Habitat destruction, indiscriminate killing and poaching and scarcity of food have put country’s wildlife at risk of extinction.
A total 31 species have been extinct in the country and 390 more are threatened species, according to the latest Red List of International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Habitat destruction and indiscriminate hunting and killing are the main causes for the extinction of wildlife animal from the country, said Dr M Monirul H Khan, associate professor of Department of Zoology at Jahangirnagar University.
Majority of the extinct species are big animals and they disappeared due to indiscriminate killing, he said.
Natural habitat loss, mainly destruction of natural forest and wetland, is one of the most causes for wildlife extinction, said the wildlife specialist.
To save the wildlife, the government has to bring the important habitat under restricted area for wildlife and ensure those actually restricted, he said.
There are some restricted areas in our country legally but those are not actually restricted for habitat, he said.
The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List 2015, published on July 15 in 2016, categorised 390 threatened species. Of them, 56 are critically endangered (CR), 181 are endangered (EN), 153 are vulnerable (VU) and sadly, 31 species have been classified as regionally extinct (RE).
They conduct their assessment of 1,619 species under seven groups of wildlife --mammals, reptiles, amphibians, birds, freshwater fish, crustaceans, and butterflies -- in Bangladesh.
The extinct species of Bangladesh include the striped hyena, banteng, blackbuck, grey wolf, Indian rhinoceros, Javan rhinoceros, nilgai, sloth bear, Sumatran rhinoceros, swamp deer, wild buffalo, marsh crocodile, bar-tailed tree creeper, Bengal florican, black-breasted parrotbill, Indian peafowl, greater adjutant, greater rufous-headed parrotbill, green peafowl, grey francolin, lesser florican, pink-headed duck, red-headed vulture, rufous-throated partridge, rusty-fronted barwing, white-winged duck, sarus crane, spot-breasted parrotbill, spot-billed pelican, swamp francolin, and white-bellied heron.
The Forest Department exhibited some 14 extinct species in Bangladesh.They are Striped Hyena (Hyaena hyaena)-until 19th century, Striped Hyena (Hyaena hyaena)-until 19th century, Grey Wolf (Canis lupus)-until 1940s, Swamp Deer (Cervus duvaucelii)-until 1950s, Blackbuck (Antilope cervicapra)-end of 19th century, Nilgai (Boselaphus tragocamelus)-until 1940s, Gaur (Bos gaurus)-until 1970s, Banteng (Bos javanicus)- until 1930s, Wild Water Buffalo (Bubalus arnee)-until early 1940s, Sumatran Rhinoceros (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis) -until 1880s, Javan Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros sondaicus)-until 1908, Indian Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis)-until end of 19th century, Common Peafowl (Pavo cristatus)-until early 1980s, Pink-headed Duck (Rhodonessa caryophyllacea)-until early 20th century and Marsh Crocodile (Crocodylus palustris)-until 1950s.
The World Wildlife Day 2017 was observed across the country and the world with the theme “Listen to the young voices” on Friday.
Engaging and empowering the youth was the call of the 2017’s UN World Wildlife Day.
The Forest Department of Bangladesh observed the World Wildlife Day at all divisional offices, said Mohammed Shafiul Alam Chowdhury, Chief Conservator of Forests.
They also arranged a programme at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Safari Park in Gazipur on Friday and school students participated in it. In the programme, the department tried to create awareness among school students about wildlife.
He also said they are taking actions against poachers according to the Wildlife (Preservation & Security) Acts to protect the wildlife from extinction.