facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Tiny sun bear listed as 'vulnerable'

Nov. 13, 2007 at 4:08 PM   |   Comments

GLAND, Switzerland, Nov. 13 (UPI) -- The world's smallest bear, the sun bear, is now "vulnerable" on the World Conservation Union's Red List of Threatened Species, the Swiss-based group says.

The sun bear, which inhabits mainland Southeast Asia, Sumatra and Borneo, previously was listed as Data Deficient, meaning not enough was known about the species to give it a status on the organization's Red List, the group said in a news release.

"Although we still have lot to learn about the biology and ecology of this species, we are quite certain that it is in trouble," said Rob Steinmetz, co-chairman of the Bland, Switzerland, organization's Bear Specialist Group's sun bear expert team. "We estimate that sun bears have declined by at least 30 percent over the past 30 years, and continue to decline at this rate."

Steinmetz said the sun bear, which stands about 4 feet tall and weighs less than 145 pounds, is threatened by commercial poaching and its habitat is compromised by deforestation.

"We are working with governments, protected area managers, conservation groups and local people to prevent extinctions of the many small, isolated sun bear populations that remain in many parts of Southeast Asia," he said.

© 2007 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Most Popular
1
Wisconsin shuts down three wolf hunting zones, two remain open Wisconsin shuts down three wolf hunting zones, two remain open
2
Earth's magnetic field may soon flip, according to new data Earth's magnetic field may soon flip, according to new data
3
Harvard scientist startled by giant bird-eating spider on rainforest walk Harvard scientist startled by giant bird-eating spider on rainforest walk
4
Three Mars probes hide behind planet, avoid comet debris Three Mars probes hide behind planet, avoid comet debris
5
Japanese man who 3D printed guns sentenced to two years in prison Japanese man who 3D printed guns sentenced to two years in prison
Trending News
Around the Web
x
Feedback