Many rare animal species around the world are suffering due to changes in their living environment. Specific criteria – habitat destruction, invasive species, pollution, population growth, and overhunting (HIPPO) was developed to identify potential threats. For this examination of HIPPO, an endangered specifies is selected to illustrate the specific criteria that affect it, which is Podocnemis lewyana commonly known as Magdalena River Turtle. This paper aims to summarize habitat destruction, overhunting, and pollution in regards to the Podocnemis lewyana.
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According to the International Union for Conservation of Animals (IUCA)
Magdalena River Turtle is subjected to the first HIPPA factor – habitat loss. More specifically, agriculture and the need to use the land for cattle breeding leaves no space for this species survival (Páez, Gallego-Garcia, and Restrepo 2016). These animals can be found in forests or wetlands, which are affected by the human-indulged destruction because those are transformed into pastures.
The second factor is overhunting, which in the case of Magdalena River Turtle leads to the inability of these animals to locate food. The IUCA states that fishing in the territory where these turtles can be found in the primary cause of the problem (Páez, Gallego-Garcia, and Restrepo 2016). This intensive harvesting can affect the Magdalena River Turtle directly as well because some local inhabitants consider it a good source of protein or medication. The final factor that hurts the number of Magdalena River Turtles is pollution, which impacts both beaches and water that these turtles use. According to IUCA, Podocnemis lewyana is unable to live normally due to damps and polluted air that affect the territory where these animals can be found.
Overall, the following three factors impact the population of Podocnemis lewyana – habitat loss, overfishing, and pollution. These animals are unable to live in forests because those are converted into pastures. The factor is worsened by human-constructed dumbs, which affect the environment. Additionally, local inhabitants hunt both Magdalena River Turtle and fish that it consumes. Finally, pollution affects nature and water; thus these turtles are unable to use beaches.
Páez, V., Gallego-Garcia, N. & Restrepo, A. 2016. Podocnemis lewyana. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T17823A1528580. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-1.RLTS.T17823A1528580.en.