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Japanese Murrelet named "Endangered Species of the Month" by News Penguin

23 Feb. 2023

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An illustration of a Japanese Murrelet by Jin Kwanwoo. The illustration is made up of the Korean words "뿔쇠오리" (Japanese Murrelet).

PUBLISH is pleased to announce that News Penguin has selected the Japanese Murrelet as February's "Endangered Species of the Month", highlighting the need for conservation efforts to protect the species.

The Japanese Murrelet is a small seabird native to the remote rocky coastlines and islets of Japan and nearby regions, including Russia and South Korea.

With an estimated population of 5,200 to 9,400 individuals, the Japanese Murrelet is listed as a Class 2 Endangered Wildlife by the Ministry of Environment in Korea and as a Vulnerable (VU) species on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List.

In Korea, breeding was observed on Gugul Island (구굴도) and Dok Island (독도) in 1987 and 2008, respectively. However, the observed number of inviduals declined from approximately 200 in 1987 to as few as 10 in 2004 and 2008.

The birds have also been spotted on Mara Island (마라도), South Korea’s southernmost island. However, they are threatened by an unusually large number of cats that hunt the birds.

News Penguin, a news media outlet focused on the protection of endangered animal and plant species, has previously selected the Korean fir and the banded houndshark as the focus of its awareness-building “Endangered Species of the Month” campaign.

PUBLISH is proud to support News Penguin in its efforts to protect the world’s biodiversity by minting and distributing NFTs of digital artworks depicting the endangered species.

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