When we think of endangered species, we often think of charismatic animals like pandas, tigers, elephants, and whales. These are the ones that get the most attention and funding from conservation efforts, and rightly so. They are important for maintaining the balance and diversity of life on Earth.
But what about the species that are less visible, less known, and less loved? The ones that live in remote habitats, have obscure lifestyles, or lack appealing features? These are the unseen species, and they are also in danger of extinction.
According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), there are more than 38,000 species that are threatened with extinction, and many more that are data deficient or not assessed. Among them are countless plants, fungi, insects, mollusks, fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals that are vital for the functioning of ecosystems and the provision of ecosystem services.
Some examples of these unseen species are:
These are just a few examples of the many unseen species that are facing extinction. They may not be as popular or attractive as other species, but they deserve our attention and protection. They have intrinsic value as living beings, and they also have instrumental value as sources of food, medicine, materials, and knowledge.
How can we save these unseen species? There is no simple answer, but some possible actions are:
Saving the unseen species is not only a moral duty, but also a smart investment for our own survival and well-being. By protecting them, we are also protecting ourselves and our future generations. Let us not let them disappear before our eyes.