Our top 10 animal stories of 2015

Pandas

We do a lot of animal coverage here at CCTV America (hello, pandas). Here are our top 10 most-read or watched animal-related stories from 2015. 

 

10. Adorable alert: Watch panda cub Bei Bei try to convince mom to play rather than go to sleep

Watch panda cub Bei Bei play with his mom instead of going to bed

Four-month-old giant panda cub Bei Bei is more interested in snuggles and play than going to bed.

Bei Bei is seen playing in a nest when Mei comes along for a snuggle before bed. But while mom is interested in sleep, Bei Bei doesn’t appear to have the same priorities. Story


 

9. Rare northern white rhino dies, only three remain on earth

Rare northern white rhino dies, only three remain on earth

One of only four northern white rhinos believed left in the world died Sunday at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. Nola, a 41-year-old female who has been at the park since 1989, was euthanized after her health took a turn for the worse, according to a statement from the zoo.


There is very little chance that any living Northern Whites can reproduce naturally due to age and reproductive issues. So it’s up to science to save them. Story


 

8. Scientists have deciphered 13 different panda phrases. (This is way ‘coo-coo’)

Screen Shot 2015-12-30 at 12.32.27 PM

Panda roars, barks, and squeaks reveal all sorts of information, scientists have found. Giant pandas baa like sheep to say “I love you.” They also warble a cheerful “I do” when wooed by a suitor. Story


 

7. Losing Nemo: Find out which animal characters are in danger in real life

Photo by Nathan Rupert on Flickr.

The Spix parrot species that inspired the animated movie “Rio” is considered critically endangered with only about 100 birds in the world, all in captivity. It’s also very possible that the species is extinct in the wild as well. Story


 

6. This elephant will never forget meeting John Kerry

Kerry elephant selfie

OK, so it’s time for us to talk about the elephant in the room…..and we mean literally. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry made a new friend on his trip to Kenya in May, and it wasn’t the typical diplomat. This fun and friendly acquaintance was a cute and approachable (though slightly clingy) baby elephant. Best of all: they took a selfie. Story


 

5. The endangered Jaguar makes a comeback in Brazil 

The endangered Jaguar makes a comeback in Brazil

Goias, Brazil is known as the heartland of the country’s agriculture. With thousands of acres designated to sugar cane, soy and cattle, it might not be the typical environment for the endangered Jaguar. According to a research conducted by Leandro Silveira of the Jaguar Conservation Fund, this magnificent predator continues to adapt to a changing ecosystem.

Goias, Brazil is known as the heartland of the country’s agriculture. With thousands of acres designated to sugar cane, soy and cattle, it might not be the typical environment for the endangered Jaguar. But according to a research, this magnificent predator continues to adapt to a changing ecosystem. Story


 

4. China discovers bird-related dragon dinosaur

Zhao Chuang's painting of Zhenyuanlong shows how strange this feathered beast may have looked

Scientists believed the dinosaur was an ancestor of the velociraptor, one that they say was on the border of becoming a bird. Story. 


 

3. Animal rights groups protest dog meat festival in Yulin

Protest against Yulin dog meat festival

A controversial annual festival which puts dog meat on the menu in a small southern Chinese city has once again met with anger and protests from animal rights activists.

The Lychee and Dog Meat Festival, slated to mark the summer solstice, the longest day in the Chinese lunar calendar, has put Yulin, a city with a population of 600,000 in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, into the media spotlight every June. Story.


 

2. Why are people eating pangolins?

Photo by Wildlife Alliance on Flickr.

Authorities in China busted a pangolin smuggling ring in November, confiscating 2,674 carcasses of the endangered species. Meanwhile, voters in the U.S. state of Washington approved a ballot measure that would make it a crime to sell or trade in endangered animals, including pangolins. So just what are these scaly creatures? Story


 

1. How endangered are lions?

Zimbabwe Lion Killed

The death of Cecil The Lion had the world — or at least what seems like most of the internet — in an uproar. While trophy hunting of lions is nothing new, we wondered: What’s the current state of the lion? Story