October 29, 2018 10:51 pm
Updated: October 30, 2018 7:31 pm

Earth’s wildlife population declined by 60 per cent in 44 years: WWF

Southern resident killer whales were listed as endangered in 2003.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Elaine Thompson
A A

A startling report from the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has shown that Earth’s wildlife population declined by nearly two-thirds over the course of just over four decades.

“In a nutshell, it’s our own human activity that is leading to these declines,” said James Snider, vice-president of science, research and innovation at WWF.

READ MORE: Humans have a long history with extinction. A new report says we’re wiping out more species

Snider said habitat loss is the key issue causing this decline, and it comes in many forms.

“Conservation, fragmentation of land, pollution and introduction of invasive species. In some cases, especially in marine environments, over-exploitation and overuse are the drivers of the decline of these species,” he said.

As a result, global wildlife populations have declined 60 per cent between 1970 and 2014.

The “Living Planet Report” focused on vertebrate species, which includes mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians.

Vertebrate species showed an 83 per cent decline in Canada specifically, Snider said.

READ MORE: Feds announce new monitoring of vessel noise impacts on endangered killer whales

He said global warming also plays a role.

Insects and plants were not included in the report.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Report an error

Comments

Want to discuss? Please read our Commenting Policy first.