The number of forest animals has fallen drastically
In recent decades, the population of forest animals has declined by more than half, worldwide. A current study by the environmental organization WWF comes to this frightening result.
Animals like the Borneo orangutan are losing their habitat – Image: WWF / Tim Laman
According to the WWF report Below The Canopy, there are fewer and fewer forest animals around the world. According to the study, the number of forest animals has fallen by a full 53 percent since 1970. Amphibians such as frogs are particularly affected by this development, as are mammals such as monkeys and forest elephants.
The WWF study looked at data from 268 vertebrate species and 455 populations. It is the first of its kind specifically dedicated to the world’s forest wildlife.
The reason given by WWF is that animals are losing their habitat due to deforestation and conversion of forests. This is exactly what is responsible for the collapse of the forest animal population.
The fact that the number of forest animals remains high is also important for the tree population. dr Susanne Winter, Forest Program Manager at WWF Germany, explains in a press release: “The vast majority of all land animals live in forests and depend on them. But this dependency is mutual: Forests depend on intact wildlife that fulfills vital functions for them , such as the pollination and dispersal of tree seeds. Without animals, the ability of forests to store carbon also decreases. Tree species that are important for climate protection in particular are at risk of being lost without animals.”