World Wildlife Day is observed on March 3rd each year to celebrate and raise awareness about the flora and fauna around the globe! The United Nations selected this date as it corresponds with the signing of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in 1973. CITES is one of the world's most powerful tools for wildlife conservation the world community has because it regulates the international trade of over 38,000 species of wild animals and plants to ensure that international trade in such species is sustainable, legal and traceable. Additionally that trade should contribute to both the livelihoods of the communities that live closest to them and to national economies for a healthy planet and the prosperity of the people in support of UN Sustainable Development Goals.
This year's theme for WWD is "Recovering key species for ecosystem restoration". Each species plays a vital role in its ecosystem, and when one of those species is lost it can trigger a cascading effect. And with more and more organisms being pushed to the brink of extinction, we risk these cascades increasing. According to the International Union of Conservation of Nature's Red List of Endangered Species, over 30,000 species are endangered or vulnerable with another 8,400 species listed as critically endangered. Continued loss of these species and degradation of ecosystems is a threat to people around the world that rely on wildlife and biodiversity-based resources to meet their needs
Dagmar the Dragonfly wants you to know what Ohio is doing to protect its vulnerable wildlife populations, like the 13 species of endangered dragonflies! In Ohio, the Division of Wildlife uses six categories of classification for wildlife status in the state:
By assessing and tracking these species we can take the best steps to conserve their populations and habitat to protect them from further decline. Want to know which animals are endangered in Ohio? Learn more from the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the Ohio Division of Wildlife by clicking the buttons below!