For hundreds of years we have been hunting animals. In ancient times it was for food or for medicinal purposes. In the colonial era, we hunted them for simple sport or to boast that we had shot a lion on the great plains of Africa or to bring back tiger skins from India. Whatever the reason, we have hunted many animals into extinction or near extinction. It is only in recent times that some really special, kind-hearted people took it upon themselves to try and preserve these beautiful animals God made for us to love and look after.
However, mankind isn’t the only reason certain species have died out. Climate changes have forced animals to adapt or die. The world isn’t the same as it was thousands of years ago. Before the Great Flood mentioned in Genesis 7 – 8, there existed a very different world. Before the Flood, the Earth was 70% land mass while the sea was 30%. However after the Flood, the ratio was swapped leaving us with a different climate and under half the land mass we had before. This climate would have made it difficult for certain species to have lived and, if so, for perhaps half of their previous lifespan. There are some who believe that certain species survived, but are half the size they would’ve been previously. There have been many sightings of these species. Of late there has been lots of controversy over the Loch Ness monster (Nessie) and the Megaladon, both thought to be extinct. In this article I will be discussing other animals thought to be extinct, yet proven to still be alive and well.
The Lazarus Species
This name is used to specifically refer to species that, like their namesake, have seemingly risen from the dead. I will be discussing some of the species that fall into this category.
1. Wild Dog
Also known as the Singing Dog of New Guinea. This adorable little creature is a relative of the Australian Dingo. These dogs have been seen and photographed by scientist and tourist alike. They were thought to be extinct until 15 were found and able to be photographed in the remote mountain regions of New Guinea.
2. The Tree Lobster of Australia
If you ever happen to visit Australia, you will find the most amazing wildlife. From the colourful birds to the wombats, kangaroos and Kuala bears, however along with these adorable and beautiful creatures, you will find this creature.
The Tree Lobster, now being bred in Melbourne Zoo, was thought to be extinct since a plague of rats were said to have supposedly eradicated the species. They were declared extinct in 1960. These insects live in the trees and can grow up to 6-inches in length. They were re-discovered in 2001, after hints of their existence were caused by a discovery of four dead tree lobsters.
3. The Tiny Nelson Shrew of Mexico
This adorable little baby is called the Tiny Nelson Shrew. He was thought to be extinct for 100 years after explorers killed some to take back to the Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. In 2009, this little guy made his first appearance in 100 years on the slopes of the San MartAn Tuxtla volcano in Mexico, turns out he was just shy.
4. The Giant Palehouse Earthworm
When it comes to places to live, if you have an aversion to giant earthworms, you may want to avoid the backyards of any house in Washington. Although proven to be the most effective natural fertilizer, the giant palehouse earthworm has been known to reach lengths of between 1 – 5 feet. As you can see in the above photograph taken in Australia, these earthworms have seemed to make a sudden appearance in Australia as well as America. These earthworms were thought to be extinct until the 1980s when they made their first appearance in the backyards of Washington.
5. The Small Elephants of Java
These magnificent creatures have quite a story of blessed irony behind their survival. Found to be happily living in the Borneo mountains for decades, these elephants were saved by poaching. Ironic? Well, here’s where it gets miraculous. Hunted to extinction in their home in Asia, these little elephants were saved by poachers who sold and shipped them all over the world, this in turn, saved them from being wiped out by the other of their species in Asia. Since then, they have been leading a peaceful life in the Bornean Mountains. God preserves His creation in the most amazing ways, doesn’t He?
The Venomous Cuban Solendon
The Venomous Cuban Solendon looks a lot like our Tiny Nelson Shrew, but with one different he has venomous saliva. Thought to be extinct since sightings of the solendon had stopped for 80 years, until the discovery of three different species were found in 1973 and 1974. The most recent sighting of the venomous solendon was in 2003. He was named Alejandrito.
To Be Continued
There was so much I wanted to write that I have decided to split this into two parts. I have covered only a few of the many species man thought to be extinct, but what of the species many cultures claim to still exist? This is what I will be discussing in the second part of this article.
Stay tuned for part two of “Are we Really Extinct?”
God bless you, all my darling avids 🙂