35 Extinct Animals That Should Be Cloned Back Into Existence

Published February 16, 2018
Updated October 25, 2018

From the Syrian wild ass to the famed Tasmanian tiger, these extinct animals are gone forever.

Quagga Extinct Animals
Golden Toad
Tasmanian Tiger Extinct Animals
Koala Lemur Extinct Animals
35 Extinct Animals That Should Be Cloned Back Into Existence
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The Earth has seen no less than five great extinction events. The dinosaurs, sure - but roughly 180 million years prior, the cataclysmically-named ‘The Great Dying’ saw 90% of life on our planet just disappear. The culprit? The extreme warming of the planet.

So that begs the question, are we truly on the cusp of the sixth extinction event? The environmental scientists behind recent research say, "Estimates reveal an exceptionally rapid loss of biodiversity over the last few centuries, indicating that a sixth mass extinction is already underway."

A dismal realization such as this should send everyone into shock mode. Yet, the defiant among us would rather risk it all than believe it could happen. Studies show even the tiniest increment of additional warmth introduced to the planet would see more species join the extinction list.

Slowing the rate of climate change "is critical for the future of many species", Scholes and Pörtner of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warn. Making vehicles and buildings more energy efficient and increasing the use of alternative energies are just some of the things we can do. But fully engaging ourselves in how to best help species adapt to the oncoming storm will also be an indispensable resource going forward.

Another safeguard against the possible scenario of a sixth extinction event is banking the DNA of certain creatures who are already at risk. This is precisely what the ‘Frozen Zoo’ north of San Diego is doing. Vast banks of animal cells (in two separate facilities, just to be safe) sit frozen. It's essentially a modern-day ark containing over a thousand individual species’ DNA so far.

Dr. Oliver Ryder, who works at the facility pleads that no one cry Jurassic Park just yet. “It's not a time capsule. It is used”. The cellular ‘zoo’ serves as a museum or catalog of what we have on Earth now and extinct animals. With a microscope, it's the Met. But its primary use is for research. The kind of research we need to investigate what can be done to ensure species’ survival on a critical level.

Enjoy this look at interesting extinct animals? Read more about de-extinction and resurrection biology. Then explore the North Pole's amazing Arctic wildlife.

Erin Kelly
An All That's Interesting writer since 2013, Erin Kelly focuses on historic places, natural wonders, environmental issues, and the world of science. Her work has also been featured in Smithsonian and she's designed several book covers in her career as a graphic artist.
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Kelly, Erin. "35 Extinct Animals That Should Be Cloned Back Into Existence." AllThatsInteresting.com, February 16, 2018, https://allthatsinteresting.com/extinct-animals. Accessed June 13, 2024.