The World Wildlife Fund for Nature’s Living Planet report reveals a 69% decline in wildlife numbers.
Freshwater species have suffered an 83% decline in the past 50 years. The report found that the number of freshwater fish globally decreased by 76% from 1970 to 2016.
Forest exploitation, habitat degradation and loss, invasive species, pollution, climate change, river obstruction and disease are the main drivers of this decline in wildlife numbers, the report says.
Wildlife experts say creating a nature-positive community would help reverse this downward trend.
Wildlife populations, including birds, mammals, amphibians, reptiles and fish, have experienced an average decline of 69% since 1970, according to the WWF’s (formerly WWF) Living Planet Report 2022, released On the 13th of October. .
The report reads that forest and animal exploitation, habitat degradation, introduction of invasive species, pollution, climate change, and disease are the main drivers of this decline in wildlife numbers. Obstacles in the way of fish migration are an important reason behind the decline of aquatic organisms.
Asian countries, including India, saw a 55% decline in wildlife numbers, while African countries saw a 66% decline.
The largest decline was observed in Latin America and the Caribbean where there was a 94% decline in wildlife populations from 1970 to 2018.
The long-distance survival of fish is at risk due to the construction of dams on rivers and other projects to generate energy that block the migration paths of fish. Only 37% of the world’s rivers flow without interruption for 1000 km.
In India, sand extraction, dams and increasing pollution in rivers are major challenges. For example, sand mining in the Narmada River in Madhya Pradesh has started to have adverse effects. As a result, the flow of the river decreased and the mahsir fish reached the brink of extinction.