Endangered species in Africa  Knysna Seahorse & Cape Vulture                 By: Karim ghalebSNC 1DBPavel FreimannWednesday 27th of December, 2017Knysnaseahorse   The Knysna seahorse also known with itsscientific name (Hippocampus capensis) is themost endangered seahorse in the world. It is known by its horse shaped head anda muscular tail that they use as an anchor. Knysna seahorses are onlydiscovered in the Knysna, Keurbooms and Swartvleiestuaries on the south shoreof South Africa.

They are green to brown in color and grow to about 12cm inlength. They live at depths of 50cm to 8m, on sandy bottoms or around plants.The knysna seahorse’s population is estimated to be 62,000 and decreasing due totheir exceptionally limited distribution range as they are endemic to a fewsouthern Cape estuaries.            Knysnaseahorse prefers to swim in pairs with their tails linked together. Theyavoid predators by camouflaging into the color of underwater plants. Due to thefact that it is too bony and they cannot digest it, not many marine predatorseat the Knysna seahorse, with an exception to crabs.

 The Knysna seahorse is mostly found in quiet and deephabitats throughout the world, from around 45°S to 45°N and live in protectedareas, for instance, sea grass beds, bays, coral reefs, or mangroves. Theseahorse has no stomach that is the reason it needs to graze continuallybecause food travels through their stomach rapidly. They have to eat up to 3000little copepods daily to get the vitality they required. The knysnaseahorses are one of a kind while giving birth because the male seahorse gives birth to offspringand the female lays her eggs in the male’s pouch and when they are ready, thebabies hatch out of the pouch into the water.

 Why is the knysna seahorse endangered?  The knysna seahorse is among the mostjeopardized species, which is a consequence of their astoundingly confinedspread as they are endemic to two or three southern Cape estuaries. Another reason is because of the massive pollution weare doing to the waters by dumping fuels and other chemicals into the ocean,and it has a restricted and fragmented distribution, only knownin a few estuaries. Its habitat is highly threatened by development and water poising.The seahorse is a very important part of the ecosystem; they need to beprotected for ecological, biological, economic, and medical reasons. Theyare important predators on bottom-dwelling organisms; removing themmay disrupt ecosystems. Only the male becomes pregnant and many seahorse speciesare mates for life. Factsabout the knysna seahorse Seahorses have no teeth or stomach so they digest the food very quickly they always have to eat to stay alive and can eat around 3,000 shrimps or more a day.

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Seahorses are committed and mate for life. They are only very few animal species on Earth, where the male bears the unborn young by freeing the female to produce more eggs right away and thus they reproduce quicker. They reproduce by going through a long courtship dance that lasts up to 8 hours. This dance is done by spinning around, changing colors and swimming side by side. When breeding, the female seahorse releases up to 50 eggs into a sack on the male’s stomach. The  eggs are carried in the male’s pouch to keep them warm until they hatch, and when they are fully formed and mature enough, he releases them into the water and between 5 and 1,500 young seahorses are born.                                       Bibliography  https://www.

aquarium.co.za/species/entry/knysna_seahorse www.

scienceinafrica.com/knysna-seahorse-curious-legendary-african-fish video.nationalgeographic.com/video/seahorse_knysnaCape vulture     The Cape Vulture has unique features someof them are, that their head and necks are nearly naked. Their eyes areyellowish, the youngsters and the immature are generally darker and morecovered, and brown to orange eyes and red neck. The bottom of their wings canlook like they are white from far away.

The bottom of the neck is bare skin andis also the same with the white backed vulture, which sense’s the temperatureand also feel the presence of thermals. Those beautiful creatures areunfortunately endangered now. But maybe if we know a little bit more aboutthem, and how we can help them grow in number that can save them because our planet losses a little bit of its essencewith each creature that we drive to extinction without lack of knowledge andcompassion. And now let us preview some more features about the cape vultures.         The beautiful cape vulture is found in alot of different countries like in Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, SouthAfrica, and Zimbabwe, it is occasionally found in the Democratic Republic ofCongo and Zambia.

It has a very unique way when laying its eggs, the CapeVulture usually lays its eggs on cliffs or near mountains where she can flylong distances to search for the carcass which means (dead body of an animal)which it is specialized in. As a scavenger, the Cape vulture feeds mainly oncarrion. When searching for food they form a foraging net across the sky,watching each other as they search large areas to locate a suitable carcass.The cape vulture has been decreasing in population since the 1980s, when it wascategorized as threatened.

It was then upgraded to vulnerable, and in 2015 backto endangered. It has a small population of about 4,700 pairs and 9,400individuals.    The capevulture is endangered to go instinct and that is because of a lot of differentproblems that face it.

One of the most dangers that face the cape vulture areelectrocution on power lines two thirds of young cape vultures are killed dueto electrocution on power lines, and the amount of food that is disappearing bygetting buried when they die so their food diminishes. Another problem is themass accidental poisonings of the rare and endangered species in Namibia, whereCape Vultures are the most endangered of all animal species. Facts aboutthe Cape Vulture •           Its scientific name is Gypscoprotheres•           It can eat up to 20 percent of theirown body weight in one sitting.•           Theydo not go after healthy prey, but will attack wounded and dying animals.

•           The cape vulture usually mates forlife•           One of the few animals to use tools, the cape vulture uses rocks to break openostrich eggs•           OldWorld vultures do not have a good sense of smell  they rely on their incredible eyesight tolocate food  a Cape Vulture can spot a 3foot animal carcass from 4 miles away. How can wehelp?First we canstop the pollution that we do to the air, we should stop the mass poisoningthat some farmers do, because it destroys and kills a lot of innocent species,farmers sometimes poison carcasses and leave them out to kill unwantedpredators, such as leopards and jackals, but often the poison kills largegroups of Cape Vultures and other species that also feed on the carcass. Humansare the most lethal weapon on earth we are the ones who destroy and pollute ourenvironment.         Bibliography                  www.arkive.org› Species › Birdswww.pbs.org/wnet/nature/the-beauty-of-ugly-why-is-the-cape…vulture…/420/datazone.birdlife.org/species/factsheet/22695225