12 extraordinary pictures show animals headed for extinction

There are thousands of species that may not be around for long.

This story was updated on October 22, 2018.

The term “endangered species” usually brings to mind charismatic animals—fluffy pandas and majestic tigers. But there are thousands of lesser-known species that are in greater danger of disappearing.

These animals, categorized as “critically endangered” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN), face what the organization calls "an extremely high risk of extinction in the wild.”

Two big threats are driving these animals toward extinction: habitat loss and poaching.

Here are pictures of 12 endangered species around the world, taken from National Geographic’s archive.

This story was originally published on May 16, 2015.