The upward growth of mankind has been marked by the extinction of countless other species that got in our way, from the mammoths were were too tasty for their own good, to all the animals dumb enough to live where supertankers ply. It's natural selection!
But then, there are those species that, to any rational person, are being wiped out for no good reason at all. These are just some of the creatures who we're rapidly slaughtering for the pure hell of it.
6Guajon: The Frog Too Horrifying To Live
Also known as "Cook's Robber Frog" and the slightly unfair "Demon of Puerto Rico," the guajon are small cave dwelling frogs. They are endangered for many of the normal reasons: habitat encroachment, introduced species eating them. Oh, and people killing them out of sheer terror.
Yes, in Puerto Rico, an innocuous two inch-long frog is being killed because they think it's kinda scary looking, believing that one look from the frog can bring down destruction and doom. So far, no one knows if Puerto Ricans have found anything peculiar in the fact that the creature they're so terrified of is also so easily defeated, but the smart money says that, no, they have not.
We're pretty sure this isn't the first species to get the genocide treatment because people were afraid of it, but we are also pretty sure this is the first one that didn't have fangs or claws and couldn't do much but ribbit.
El Chupacabras. Go back to hunting and spreading legends of a non-existent monster and leave the damned frogs alone.
5The Manus Island Tree Snail Makes Great Earrings
Of all the things to hunt to extinction, why snails? Sure, some people eat them, but it's not like people are ordering super-sized boxes of them at fast food chains. And it's not like they're causing much of a threat or anything; their most dangerous activities are "hiding in cracks if the weather's too dry" and "trying not to drown."
And while these creatures are partially threatened for the standard reasons (that is, chopping down the forest that the snails call home) there is another, far more ridiculous reason:
The booming market for people who want overpriced snail jewelry.
Ironic jewelery for hippies.
Yes, even though through most of history snails on a woman was a sign of poor hygiene, these days there's a demand for bling made from the brilliant green shells the snails are living in. Thus, now you find Manus Island locals making a living off of killing and selling these creatures.
Boy, this is a tough one. After all, the dazzling colors of the shells really can't be imitated. Well, you know, unless you have some paint. It can't really be that hard; go to the beach, pick up shells, paint them green. Or use green rocks, like emeralds. They were born dead.