Once-Endangered Species Eventually Become Extinct. You’ll Be Surprised How They Get There.

The dodo bird. The passenger pigeon. The sabre-toothed cat. All of these species have one thing in common: they’re long gone.

These 55 once-endangered species are either extinct or are on their way. Find out how they got there.

There may have been 30 left on Earth, then 20, then 10.

And soon there were none.

55. Eastern Cougar

Eastern cougars were knocked off the endangered species list in 2015. Despite valiant conservation efforts, the North American wildcats were declared completely extinct by wildlife conservation organizations.

The thinning out of their species was spurred by 19th century European settlers killing the predators to save their livestock.

54. Golden Toad

1989 saw the vibrant golden toad disappear from Costa Rica’s Monteverde Forest.

Although early researchers believed global warming was the cause of the species’ extinction, new studies have shown that El Niño may have been the source of the severe dry season that contributed to the golden toads’ demise.

53. Falkland Island Wolf

The Falkland Island wolf – aka, the Antarctic wolf – held the distinction as the only native land mammal on the islands. Now, however, there are none.

In 1876, the wolf became extinct. Research comes up short in the search for why, but some theories suggest that settlers on the islands mass poisoned and otherwise killed the predators to save their sheep.

52. Javan Tiger

The island of Java in Indonesia was home to the Javan tiger until the 1970s. The species was on the smaller scale for a tiger, but that likely didn’t contribute to its extinction.

Habitat destruction and the hunting of these rare tigers is what did it. That, and their primary source of food – rusa deer – suffered disease and died off.

Although conservation efforts were made in the ’20s and ’30s, they sadly were not enough to save the Javan tiger.