Extinction of species is a vast phenomenon that is defined as the death or disappearance of any last remaining individual of any species. Extinction played a very important role in the evolution of the planet earth. From the firstborn living creature to the great dinosaurs, the planet earth has inhabited millions of species that have gone extinct with the passage of time.
Extinction of different species may occur due to different circumstances like natural disasters, the evolution of species, climate changes or other causes of mass extinction. In the present era, the main cause for the extinction of some species is human greed and selfish behavior. Destroying natural habitats and experimenting with nature humans have been in this race of evolving and this has caused suffering to nature and other wildlife species.
Species extinct from the Indian subcontinent
The Indian subcontinent has been a home to many wildlife creatures and still is one of the continents with a vast variety of species. But with the passage of time, many animal species have become extinct from the Indian land.
The Indian cheetah became a victim of human greed a very long time ago. This exotic animal was also called the Asiatic cheetah. The Indian cheetah was known to be the fastest animal in the world and found in parts of Gujarat and Rajasthan as it favors semi-desert conditions. Due to excessive deforestation, hunting and habitat destruction the fastest animal on planet earth is extinct from the Indian subcontinent and is found in only some parts of Iran. Therefore, the Asiatic cheetah is now known as Iranian Cheetah. There was a variety of them found in India about 80 years ago.
The Indian Aurochs was a special species of the wild cattle and was significantly larger and taller than the usual wild cattle. This animal had a weight of 1000 kilograms in a body that was about 6.6 ft. tall. The Indian Aurochs was quite similar to the modern day Indian bison and the Gaur which are presently the largest species of cattle found in the country. It was quite a challenge for hunting. Due to its wild nature, it preferred hot and dry climatic conditions. The Indian Aurochs was declared extinct 1627 years ago.
The Sivatherium was one of the tallest animals found in Asia with a height of 7 ft. This beast is wild in nature and was found only in the Indian Subcontinent. Along with height these monsters were very swift and fast and were named after Lord Shiva from Hindu mythology. This elegant creature got extinct from the Indian land about 8000 years ago.
The Sumatran Rhinoceros is found in neighboring countries but are declared extinct from the land of India. These animals have two horns and unlike other Rhinoceros, they were very small in size when compared to regular rhinoceros. They were found in rainforests with swamps and clouds on the Indian land. They were scattered around a large area about 1900 years from today and therefore, were difficult to keep track of.
The pink headed duck has been extinct from 1950 but was once found in parts of India and Bangladesh. Some searches state that they might be critically endangered in some parts of the world, but they are defiantly not found in Indian subcontinent anymore. They have a black shaded body figure with a height of about 45 cm. The long necks and pink colored heads make them distinguishable from other ducks. The pink patches match with the Indian spot-billed duck.
Bharattherium is a mammal that lived on the Indian land a long time ago. This animal has a height of 6 to 4 mm. This mammal has curved teeth that make it different from any other species found. They had tooth enamel that protected the tooth from any kind of cracks or damage.
The Malabar civet was found in the Western Ghats in the 1980s. It had grey vive rid and spotted appearance that made it look different than other similar animals in the region. They were very small with a height of less than 2 and a half ft. and weight was not more than 7 kilograms. These animals were yet another victim to human greed. They were reared constantly for extraction of civetone, which is a special and unique type of extract found only in the glands of these civets and was used in medicines or aromatics.
The Indian subcontinent has been a home for a lot of rare and unique animals. But with the passage of time, many of these animals have fallen victim to the climatic conditions, hunting, deforestation and habitat loss. While many others have gone extinct we have still a chance to save some of the most endangered ones. We as humans should keep in mind that nature is not ours to exploit. Nature gave rise to us and we do not own it. It is our responsibility as the most intelligent species on the planet to look after other animal species that make Mother Nature beautiful.