FLORIDA, USA — The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service sent a proposal on Wednesday that would remove dozens of species from the endangered list - not because of any success in protecting the species, but because they are now considered extinct. In Florida, that means the end of two feathered friends.
It’s a rare move for wildlife officials to give up hope on a plant or animal. But scientists say climate change threatens to make extinctions more common as it adds to the pressures facing imperiled species.
The factors behind this latest and largest batch of extinctions range from urbanization to water pollution and logging. In each extinction, humans were the ultimate cause.
Bachman's warbler was one of the Florida birds that have gone extinct. The small migratory bird once populated the swamps of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. According to the Center for Biological Diversity, the warbler was last seen in 1988 but was ultimately lost due to habitat destruction.
The Ivory-billed woodpecker is another Florida bird that made the list. It is the third-largest woodpecker in the world and at one point flew in nearly 13 states. Logging reduced the woodpecker's habitat. The last verified sighting was in 1944, the Center for Biological Diversity said.
In total, 22 species from across 19 states were removed from the endangered species list because of extinction.