WWF finds global wildlife has declined 60 percent since 1970

The World Wildlife Fund’s 2018 Living Planet report demonstrates a global wildlife population loss of 60 percent between 1970 and 2014. The report, which tracks over 4,000 species of mammals, birds, fish, reptiles and amphibians, is published every two years. “Earth is losing biodiversity at a rate seen only during mass extinctions,” the report says. These declines are steepest in the tropics, including regions in Central and South America, with almost a 90 percent decrease in wildlife populations. Freshwater species also faced the brunt of the losses with an 83 percent decline, which the report said is likely due to overfishing, pollution and climate change. Other findings show that only about a quarter of the world’s land is untouched by humans, and the United States is among the countries consuming the most natural resources.

Read more in USA Today or check out the report here.

Header Image: Tropical species such as the green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas) face the steepest declines, according to a new WWF report. ©Bernard Spragg