Environmental factors, disease and even genetics can play a part in where a species sits on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) conservation status list. However my opinion is that the list is a reflection of the sorry state of some of the world’s governments and their inability to do any meaningful good to help protect vulnerable animals. Human activity has by far the greatest influence in both the protection and destruction of habitats and the creatures that call them home.
Extinct – No known individuals left alive.
Extinct in the Wild – Individuals in captivity but none left in the wild.
Critically Endangered – Extreme high risk of extinction in the wild.
Endangered – High risk of extinction in the wild.
Vulnerable – High risk of species becoming endangered in wild.
Near Threatened – Possibility of species becoming endangered in near future.
Least Concern – Wide–spread and abundant.
Data Deficient – Not enough information to be categorised.
Not Evaluated – Not yet evaluated.