The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has updated its “red list” of threatened species, upgrading two kinds of albatross. However, the okapi, or “forest giraffe”, has taken a turn for the worse in Africa; the species is now listed as endangered and its numbers are dwindling, say IUCN officials.
Among species that saw an increase in population are the black-browed albatross, which was promoted from endangered to near threatened, and the black-footed albatross, which went from vulnerable to near threatened.
With stripes on its legs similar to those on zebras, the okapi is revered in its native habitat within the Democratic Republic of the Congo and even appears on the country’s currency. Protecting the species has been difficult amid political turbulence because armed rebels, elephant poachers and illegal miners encroach on parts of the okapi’s range, say conservationists.
Source: Mother Nature Network