The Countries With The Most Endangered Mammals

Indonesia, Madagascar, and Mexico are faring the worst.

In the last decade, animals like the West African Black Rhino and Baiji Dolphin have gone extinct. The list of threatened mammals around the world has climbed to 1,199 different species. Who’s next?


“A staggering 25% of mammals are at risk of extinction,” says Jon Whiting, who created the maps for Eco Experts, a U.K.-based solar power company, using data from the World Bank. “The data is really alarming and suggests we need to do something urgently if we are going to prevent the extinction of many species around the world. Many of our most beautiful mammals are just silently slipping away, so it is incredibly important to raise awareness and pressure nations to be more responsible.”

Indonesia, which has the highest rates of deforestation in the world, tops the list with 184 threatened mammals. “Despite only occupying 1% of the Earth’s land mass, Indonesia’s rainforests are home to 12% of mammal species in the world, but deforestation has put many of these at risk, including orangutans and critically endangered Sumatran tigers and rhinos,” says Whiting.

Madagascar follows with 114 threatened mammals, most of which aren’t found anywhere else in the world. 22 different species of lemur on the island are critically endangered. Next on the is Mexico, with 101 threatened mammals, and India with 94, both of which are quickly losing habitat to new development.

Flickr user Thangaraj Kumaravel

“I hope visualizing the data country by country helps more people fully appreciate the scale of the issue facing us,” says Whiting. “Turning data into a visual graphic like this will hopefully reach a wider audience and ultimately help pressure nations to be more responsible.”

It’s worth noting that problem of extinction is much bigger than what’s shown on these maps, since they’re limited to mammals alone. If other types of animals are included, and plants, at least 22,413 species are at risk–and that’s only counting the ones we know about.


About the author

Adele Peters is a staff writer at Fast Company who focuses on solutions to some of the world's largest problems, from climate change to homelessness. Previously, she worked with GOOD, BioLite, and the Sustainable Products and Solutions program at UC Berkeley, and contributed to the second edition of the bestselling book "Worldchanging: A User's Guide for the 21st Century."