Mammals as a class of animals are among the most at risk of extinction. There are currently around 5400 species of mammal. Compare this with around 10000 species of birds, 30000 species of fish and 950,000 species of insects. Each mammal that goes extinct is therefore a must bigger relative loss.
Despite the relatively small number of species, mammals come in a great variety of forms. As we ourselves are mammals, we see similar traits in them. They experience grief, dreams, trauma, anger and more.
In recent years, many more mammal species have become endangered or critically endangered. Much of this is due to increased human interaction such as habitat use, pesticides and hunting. As of late 2015 / early 2016, the IUCN red list estimates 30 species of mammals as critically endangered.
With a weight of up to 700 kg, the Irish elk is the largest deer ever to have existed. It was hunted for its large antlers.
The Tasmanian tiger was Australia's only known carnivorous marsupial. Named after its prominent stripes, it was reported to be a relatively shy animal.
The California grizzly bear was a particularly large variety of Grizzly bear. Native to California, it has become a widely recognized symbol of the state.
The Bali Tiger was the smallest known tiger subspecies, native to the Indonesian Island of Bali. It was known for its unique fur coloring.
The Zanzibar leopard was a small variety of leopard native to the Zanzibar islands in Tanzania. Local farmers believed it to be a creature of evil.
The Baiji was a species of river dolphin in China. It lived exclusively in the Yahtzee river, and is thought to be the first dolphin species to have been completely eradicated by humans.
The Pyrenean ibex was a type of Wild Goat from the Pyrenean mountains in southwestern Europe. It was known for its distinctive curved horns.
The Caribbean monk seal was a subspecies of monk seal, described as being curious and unafraid of humans. These qualities did not serve them well when settlers arrived.
The Caspian tigers was one of the largest cats ever to have lived, weighing up to 240 kg (530 lb). It inhabited the scarce forests and plains of central Asia.
The Western black rhinoceros was an extinct subspecies of black rhinoceros. It had distinctively longer legs and a square horn base in contrast to its cousins.
The Bramble Cay melomys was an extinct Australian rodent. It lived only on one small coral island, Bramble Cay. This made it the most isolated mammal in Australia.
The Indian Cheetah, or Asiatic cheetah, became extinct in India in 1948. It lives on in Iran, but is critically endangered. It is estimated that less than 100 Indian cheetahs remain in the wild.
The Indian auroch was a gigantic species of cattle. It was stocky and had characteristically large horns compared to its European cousins.
The Sivatherium giganteum was an ancient Indian grazing mammal. It was similar in appearance to a giraffe, but chunkier and with a moose-like head.
The Gigantopithecus blacki was an ancient species of ape. It weighed over half a tonne and stood 3 metres tall. This gave it the title of the largest ape ever to have existed.
As humanity progresses, the rate that animals go extinct gets faster and faster. The effects of climate change, habitat destruction...
Like mammals, the rate of bird extinction has been increasing with the continued expansion of of humanity, following the industrial...