# Why do animals and plants become endangered?

Generally speaking, endangered species are those animals and plants that are in decline and may be in danger of extinction. A threatened species is one that is likely to become endangered within the foreseeable future.

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### An Endangered Honeycreeper, the Akekee (Kauai Akepa), in Hawaii

Many species of Hawaiian honeycreepers have persisted into the 20th century because high elevation rain forests on the islands of Kaua’i, Maui, and Hawai’i are cool enough to limit transmission of introduced avian malaria (Plasmodium relictum). Malaria transmission is tied closely to the effects of temperature on development of malarial parasites within their

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