• Question: how do animals become extinct?

    Asked by leigha1234 to Angela, Gabriele, Karen, Shane on 20 Nov 2013.
    • Photo: Karen McCarthy

      Karen McCarthy answered on 20 Nov 2013:

      Animals can become extinct because of a variety of factors – evolution is a complicated system!

      Animals, like people need a few main things – food, heat, shelter health and protection. A change in any of these factors and how available they are can have huge effects on a population or animal species. For example if rabbits ran out of a food source, this would damage the growth and survival of the population. The introduction then perhaps of a new predator, like a fox, would cause further damage, on this occurring on a wide or global scale could potentially cause extinction

    • Photo: Angela Stevenson

      Angela Stevenson answered on 20 Nov 2013:

      Hi Leigha!

      Many animals become extinct through natural causes. This might be a change in the climate of a particular region, and the plants or animals just can’t survive in that region can t survive the change in weather, it might be to cold, too wet, too dry. Also, some animals depend on others, so if one is destroyed another might disappear shortly after. Animals also compete for food, space and many other factors in the environment, sometimes a stronger or faster animal (or plant even) could conquer and cause the extinction of another animal (or plant) – a good example of this is us! Over the past hundreds of years, humans have caused the extinction of many animals on Earth due to hunting, pollution, or the destruction of the places where they live. The Irish Elk became extinct as a result of over hunting and habitat destruction.