Animals extinct this century

These animals have gone extinct since the start of the 21st century. Most of the pictures are public domain or released under a GNU or Creative Commons license (the majority are from Wikipedia). The descriptions are derived from the database maintained by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and from press releases. PIants and inverterbrates which became extinct haven't been included.

21st century extinctions:

The Baiji Dolphin

Image: Baiji Dolphin
Functionally extinct by 2006.
IUCN: database entry.
Scientific name:
Lipotes vexillifer.
Picture source (Wikipedia).

An expedition organized by The Baiji Foundation in late 2006 sought evidence that Baiji white dolphins still existed in their only habitat, the Yangtze river in China. Scientists from six nations on two research vessels travelled for almost 3500 kilometres to the Yangtze Delta, and then retraced their route. They were equipped with sophisticated optical instruments and underwater microphones, but were unable to detect any surviving dolphins. The Foundation published a report on the expedition and declared the species functionally extinct. What does functionally extinct mean? It means too few potential breeding pairs remain to ensure that the species will survive.

West African Black Rhino

Image: West African Black Rhino
Probably extinct by 2006.
IUCN: database entry.
Scientific name:
Diceros bicornis longipes.
Photo source (Wikipedia).

In 2006, intensive surveys were conducted to locate any surviving West African black rhinos in their last refuges in northern Cameroon. After 48 field missions, no signs were found of their continued presence, although evidence of earlier poaching remained. The IUCN issued a news release in which the chairman of the African Rhino Specialist Group stated: "As a result this subspecies has been tentatively declared as extinct."

The Golden Toad

Image: Golden Toad
Extinct by 2007.
IUCN: database entry.
Scientific name:
Incilius periglenes.
Photo source (Wikipedia).
 
The Golden Toad is sometimes referred to as the Monteverde Toad or the Orange Toad. It was only known to exist on a high altitude ridge in Monteverde, Costa Rica. The IUCN database entry states: "Formerly a common species, no specimen has been seen since 1989. It last bred in normal numbers in 1987, and its breeding sites were well known." Its demise is attributed to a combination of factors, including airborne pollution and, due to its restricted range, global warming.

Craugastor escoces

Extinct by 2007.
IUCN: database entry.
Scientific name: Craugastor escoces.
This species of frog in the Leptodactylidae family does not have a widely accepted common name. It inhabited the volcano slopes of Barva, Irazú, and Turrialba in Costa Rica. Although it has been well studied and collected, and was formerly abundant throughout its range, it has not been recorded despite extensive surveys since 1986. There have been no new records as of August, 2007.

Holdridge's Toad

Extinct by 2007.
IUCN: database entry.
Scientific name:
Incilius holdridgei.
This species lived in the lower montane rainforest around the Barva volcano in Costa Rica (altitude range: 200-2,200m). It has not been seen since 1986 despite 7 consecutive years of intensive searching to August 2007. It was formerly easy to find during the breeding season - at the onset of the rainy season. In 1975, observers recorded 2,765 males visiting two pools in an 8-day period.

Spix's Macaw

Image: Cyanopsitta spixii
Extinct in the wild by 2004.
IUCN: database entry.
Scientific name:
Cyanopsitta spixii.
Photo source (Wikipedia).

This species of Macaw was native to Brazil. The IUCN database entry says the last known individual in the wild disappeared at the end of 2000, and that the species may well have gone extinct, primarily through trapping for trade and from habitat loss. "Any remaining population is likely to be tiny, and for these reasons it is treated as Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct in the Wild)."

Po'o-uli

Image: Melamposops phaeosoma
Functionally extinct by 2004.
IUCN: database entry.
Scientific name:
Melamposops phaeosoma.
Photo source (PIERC).

The Po'o-uli, sometimes referred to as the Black-faced Honeycreeper, was first discovered in 1973 on the north-eastern slopes of Haleakala on the Hawaiian island of Maui. By mid-1997, only three individuals could be found. A few unlocated individuals may exist in the wild, but the current wild population is functionally zero since the three known birds occur in separate, non-overlapping home ranges and no breeding is probable without intervention.

Kama'o

Extinct by 2004.
IUCN: database entry.
Scientific name: Myadestes myadestinus.
The Kama'o was the larger variety of thrush on the Hawaiian island of Kaua'i (the smaller variety, Myadestes palmeri, is Critically Endangered). No sightings of this bird have been recorded since 1989, despite numerous intensive surveys.

Hawaiian Crow

Image: Hawaiian Crow
Extinct in the wild by 2004.
IUCN: database entry.
Scientific name:
Corvus hawaiiensis.
Photo source (Wikipedia).

The last Hawaiian crows were found only in one part of the Hakalau National Wildlife Refuge in Hawaii. The IUCN database entry states: "The last two known wild individuals of this species disappeared in 2002, so the species is now classified as Extinct in the Wild."

Pyrenean Ibex

Image: Spanish Ibex
 
Subspecies extinct by 2000.
Wikipedia article with illustrations.
Scientific name:
Capra pyrenaica pyrenaica.
Photo source (Wikipedia).