Sunday, February 21, 2016

Meet One of the World's Rarest Animals

This is the Amur Leopard

The rarest big cat in the world is the amazing wild Amur Leopard. There are only 50 to 60 adults left southeastern Russia and parts of China.

This big cat lives in an area where there are very hot summers and very cold winters. You might think an animal with fur would not survive in hot summers. The Amur Leopard is different than other big cats. It's fur is short in the summer and grows long in the winter. And walking in the snow isn't hard for this leopard because it's legs are longer than all the other leopards. 

At one time, hundreds of this wild leopard lived in Amur and shared it's habitat with the Amur Tiger. Now, there are so few of them, they are rarely seen in the wild. They are disappearing because hunters kill them for their fur and their bones. Their bones are used for some Chinese medicines, and their soft fur is used to make coats and rugs and furniture. And their food is disappearing. The animals they hunt like musk deer are hard to find, so they hunt the sheep and cattle raised by farmers. This causes farmers to kill them. This is how extinction starts. An animal's food disappears when people move in. The animal hunts the people's livestock. And the farmers kills the animals.

You can help save this beautiful leopard by learning more about them. To see how you can help check out World Wildlife website, or visit Boris and Kia, two Amur Leopards, at the Oregon Zoo.

Saving this leopard is important. Every animal has something to offer the world and all of us. Losing it would mean kids like me would never be able to see a real live Amur Leopard.

"Some people think this is cool, but I think it's cruel" Animalgirl

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Meet the critically endangered Hawksbill Turtle

 Saving the Hawksbill Turtle

Hi! This is Animalgirl again here to show you the Hawksbill turtle. I love these turtles. They need our help, so they won't disappear forever.

It is called a Hawksbill turtles because it's beak is like a hawk's. Do you know what else?

  • Their favorite food is sponges, so eating the sponges helps protect the reef.
  • Their shell is smooth and flat. It's streamlined so the water flows across their shell making it easier for them to swim.
  • The front flippers power the swim and the back ones are short for steering.
  • Like other turtles, Hawksbills need to come up for air.
  • They are reef turtles because the reef feeds and shelters them from tiger sharks.
  • The predator of the hawksbill is the Tiger shark. 
  • To defend itself, the Hawksbill leans on its side so the shark bites its shell and not it. 

These amazing turtles are super endangered because fishermen catch them in their nets and the turtles drown when they can't get air to breathe. This is called bycatch. It is also because of their beautiful orange, green, brown, or yellow shells. People poach them to use their tortoise shells for jewelry and furniture. Their meat is also used for soup. 

Some people think this is cool, but I think it's cruel.

Sea Turtle Conservancy 

Note: All photos courtesy of

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Meet the Gentle Red Ape

This is the amazing and endangered orangutan. There are only about 30,000 left in the world.

The name orangutan means"forest person" because the native peoples thought they were people hiding in the trees to get out of doing their work. They live high in the trees on the islands of Borneo and Sumatra. Orangutans have everything they need in the tree tops so they never have to come out of the trees. 

They are omnivores meaning they eat plants and insects. Bark, leaves, and bugs are part of their diet. But they also like a really stinky, fruit that looks like a spiky ball with bananas inside that is called durian.

Orangutans are disappearing because loggers are chopping down the forest trees where they live. This is called deforestation. They are also disappearing because mothers are killed so poachers can steal the babies and sell them for a lot of money as part of the pet trade. When they get too big, though, they are usually killed or abandoned. 

Some people think this is cool, but I think it's cruel!

For more information on how can you help, check out these websites.