In recent decades, the term ''endangered species'' has been popularized in many media. Endangered species have become a major international cultural phenomena, with creatures such as the [[ Giant Panda]] becoming global celebrities. While the term probably [[TropeNamer entered common usage]] with the passage of [[ The Endangered Species Act]] in 1973, the concept is [[OlderThanTheyThink far older]]. In 1948, the [[ International Union for Conservation of Nature]] began formally [[ classifying]] certain species as 'endangered', and [[ the beginnings of wildlife conservation]] date as far back as [[OlderThanFeudalism late ancient times]].

To be this trope:
* The endangered species, A, must be a type of creature, object, phenomenon, etc., for which there is an apparent distinct possibility they will all soon be [[KilledOffForReal gone forever]].
* A group of creatures, B, who may be the audience rather than a character in the story, or the As themselves, place a significant value on As continuing to exist, for no other reason than that the world would be less without them.

* In the past Bs either placed little value on the existence of an A or else hated or feared them.
* An InferredHolocaust may have occurred, followed by a MyGodWhatHaveIDone moment. Basically MustMakeAmends at a species-wide level.
* The previously detested SmallAnnoyingCreature or MonsterOfTheWeek becomes DracoInLeatherPants, TheWoobie, etc. in the view of Bs.
* As are not {{Explosive Breeder}}s, so increasing their population is not a trivial task.

A sapient race in terminal decline - not necessarily imminent enough to make them immediately endangered - is a DyingRace. Compare LastOfHisKind, OnlyYouCanRepopulateMyRace, WhatMeasureIsANonUnique. Contrast ExplosiveBreeder.


[[folder:{{Anime}} and {{Manga}}]]
* In ''Anime/{{Doraemon}}'', Nobita tries to exploit this trope by using a gadget that turns him into a endangered species, so that he will be protected by everyone instead of being scolded and bullied as usual. However, this [[BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor backfires spectacularly]] that not only he is now protected as he wished, his house has also been modified into a zoo-like structure where everyone can enter to see his 'ecology', and he himself is later brought to a lab for study. While no such thing as [[TheyWouldCutYouUp cutting him up]] occurs, the experience is still unpleasant for Nobita as he is treated like a Chimpanzee, complete with a fruit-only diet and a playroom which consists of only a tire swing.
* One of ''Anime/{{Doraemon}}'''s authors once drew an {{Anvilicious}} comic about humans being hunted to extinction because their bodies were considered to be a potent cure for hairiness (apparently, they don't have Nair in the future). The last two humans end up stranded on an island where a rare lizard (or salamander) was hunted to extinction by earlier humans.
* In ''Manga/RosarioToVampire'', [[spoiler: Moka and Kurumu]] view [[spoiler: [[WitchSpecies Witches]]]] this way, and so they ask Tsukune not to be too hard on [[spoiler: Yukari]]. It's later implied that this is also true for many if not most monstrous species, including [[spoiler: Moka's, Kurumu's, and Mizore's]].
* The eponymous seedship in ''Manga/KnightsOfSidonia'' believe themselves to be the last humans in existence. Earth is long gone, and though there were other seed ships, all contact with them has been lost...

* After ''ComicBook/HouseOfM'' decreased the [[Comicbook/XMen mutant population]] to just a few hundred individuals, Homo superior became this. There was even a storyline with Beast visiting every EvilutionaryBiologist he knew to appeal to them for help restoring the X-gene. The first new mutant birth since M-Day has become a significant plot point in the X-Books.
* Every species from Krypton is an endangered one, if not already extinct in most Franchise/{{Superman}} stories.

* In ''Film/Tremors3BackToPerfection'', some humans want to keep at least one Graboid alive.
* Young Spock uses the exact same phrase in the new ''{{Film/Star Trek}}'' [[spoiler: after his planet was destroyed, with roughly 10,000 out of 6 ''billion'' escaping. However many were in space at the time, that's gonna leave a dent.]]
** ''Film/{{Star Trek IV|The Voyage Home}}'' suggests that humpback whales (currently ''not'' an example, although protected by international treaty) will become extinct in the near future. Presumably they'll become one of these along the way.

[[folder: Literature]]
* The Buggers, by the end of ''Literature/EndersGame'', have been reduced to a single Queen. Much of ''Literature/SpeakerForTheDead'' revolves around finding a suitable home for her so she can start a new hive. This is particularly notable because in ''Game'', the Buggers were hated and feared by humans, and it was Ender's own work that led people to regret their (near) genocide.
** Also note that as the Buggers have a hive mind, the Queen and her hive are all considered to be one individual, so it's a case of [[LastOfHisKind Last Of Her Kind]].
* Pern's dragons were placed in a similar position during the Long Intervals, in that the species' survival depended entirely on the health and fecundity of a single queen.
* ''Literature/InheritanceCycle'': dragons.
* The French novel ''{{Literature/Malevil}}'' [[AfterTheEnd takes place after]] WorldWarIII. As such, all of Emmanuel's livestock are now in danger of extinction, in particular his horses. The only surviving animals were a cave used as a "nursery" and all but one were pregnant. The pig and cow have male offspring and could inbreed to survive. The horse gives birth to a filly, so as far as Emmanuel knows there are three mares left in the world and the horse is doomed to extinction. [[spoiler: There are other surviving animals. Shortly after, Emmanuel captures the region's only stallion, bringing the known horse population to ''four'' and hopefully more in the future]].
* In ''Literature/GalaxyOfFear: The Swarm'', birdlike shreeves are a protected species. The shreeves eat [[ExplosiveBreeder drog beetles]], keeping their population in check so they don't form a HordeOfAlienLocusts. But shreeves are also very fragile, breed slowly, and are not particularly bright. Legends say that killing just one will upset the delicate ecological balance of Sk'rr and give the beetles an edge. [[spoiler: Zak kills one. On the plus side the legend is exaggerated. On the negative side, someone else has been killing thousands.]]
* In ''Literature/DragonBones'', there are no new dwarves being born, due to a mysterious illness that has something to do with there being no dragons in Hurog anymore. It doesn't seem to actually kill them, just causing the population to shrink.
* In ''Literature/{{Animorphs}}'', the titular protagonists refer to themselves as this several times.
* In ''Literature/WingsOfFire'', humans are explicitly referred to as an endangered species due to the fact that dragons have become the dominant species.

* In ''Series/BabylonFive'', the Dilgar and briefly Humans, during the Human - Minbari war.
** Also the Markab, who [[spoiler: [[KilledOffForReal really did go extinct]] from a plague]]. Humans presumably don't die out from the Drahk plague, but the ones on Earth embody this trope at the start of ''Crusade''.
* ''Series/{{Battlestar Galactica|2003}}'': Humans.
* The [[Franchise/StargateVerse Asgard]], due to millennia of cloning cloned clones and having no original genetic material left. In the series finale they perform a species wide HeroicSacrifice, but apparently there are pockets of them in other areas.

* Music/JohnZorn's album with The Dreamers, "0'0" (2009) refers to the Hawaiian songbird family Mohoidae, which was threatened with extinction back then and has now effectively gone extinct.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* After conquering a race's last planet in ''VideoGame/{{Spore}}'', any surviving ships will have their label changed from [Name of Species] to Pirate, suggesting that Pirates encountered in the game are actually surviving members of conquered species.
* In ''Franchise/MassEffect'', The Rachni are a sentient, if extremely alien, species of insectoids who were thought to be actually extinct. In the course of the game, you have the choice between setting the last surviving Queen free to let them repopulate, or extincting them entirely. A harder choice than it may seem, since the Rachni went near-extinct due to them embarking on a war with the Citadel Races, causing significant loss of life. In keeping with the trope, you'll have characters - both in your party and further abroad - arguing that you can't justify destroying an entire species, no matter how monstrous it looks, and how much damage it once caused (keeping in mind that the Rachni Wars are ancient history, and this one has PROMISED it won't rise up to threaten the world again.) And some who argue that it's time to 'finish the job.'
** Ironically, the krogan -- who were armed by the Citadel races and sent out into the galaxy to fight the rachni -- suffered a similar fate: the Council deemed them too dangerous, and the krogan were afflicted with an artificially-created plague that all but sterilized their species, which previously bred like rabbits to survive their DeathWorld. In an interesting twist, Mordin reveals that the scientists who created the disease wanted only to ''stabilize'' krogan birthrates, and are now working to make sure the krogan aren't driven to extinction.
* In the ''VideoGame/{{Homeworld}}'' backstory, the Hiigarans.
* Most terrestrial lifeforms in the ''Half-Life'' verse (marine life is said to have gone completely extinct due to billions of leeches and the occasional ichtyosaur swimming around). After a large batch of Xenian lifeforms were teleported onto Earth, a planetary-scale Combine invasion occurred and that's even before the Combine set up their reproduction suppression field which can't be ruled out as being ineffective against anything but humans... If a mini world-war and two decades of global sterility count, then humans might as well be endangered. [[spoiler: At least until the suppression field was shut down and Kleiner urged everyone to "do your part for the revival of our species"]].
* The Ing have nearly been wiped out in ''Franchise/{{Metroid}}''. Since they were created by evil and are evil themselves nobody else seems to be worried about it.
** The Metroids themselves have been hovering around the "completely extinct" event horizon ever since Samus purged their homeworld of them in ''Metroid II''. Of course, given that they're a species of genetically-engineered super-predators, opinions are split as to whether or not the galaxy is better off with or without them.
*** Turns out they kept the X on their homeworld in check, at least.
* A strong theme in the ''VideoGame/{{Oddworld}}'' series. Scrabs and Paramites have been hunted down by Glukkons to make processed food (with Meeches going extinct), Gabbits were hunted down by Vyykers for the wide variety of uses they had with only Munch [[spoiler:and 150 Gabbiar eggs]] left, and Steef were hunted for ''sport'' by Sekto [[spoiler:and of these we only ever see two - Stranger, and Sekto's host body after he's discarded it]].
* Wyverns are endangered in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyV''. [[spoiler: It was initially believed that there was only one left in the world.]]
* The ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'' series:
** The Lapras species has been deemed to be one. Due to their high intelligence and relatively powerful nature, humans have over-hunted it to near-extinction. Therefore, the only one you can get in ''VideoGame/PokemonRedAndBlue'' is from an employee guarding it at Silph Co. Later generations were slightly kinder to it, with it being a wild encounter in some places (albeit with an encounter rate of 5% or lower). However, while their population appears to be slowly recovering (potentially ''too much'', according to the ''Sun/Moon'' website), they are still incredibly rare in-game.
** Farfetch'd is stated to have been hunted to near extinction because its meat tastes good when served with the leek it carries as a weapon.
** Wild Mudbray are now found only in Alola after once being found all over the world, [[ShownTheirWork a nod to the current rarity of real life feral donkeys and horses]].
** By ''VideoGame/PokemonSunAndMoon'', [[PoisonousPerson Grimer and Muk]] have become this thanks to improvements to the environment -- such as a decrease in industrial waste, which they eat for sustenance. Their Alolan offshoots, which adapted to eating garbage instead, seem better off, however.
* ''VideoGame/MonsterHunter'' has the Monoblos, which pretty much exists to underscore that the Hunters' effect on the ecology is actually monitored and kept in check. The Monoblos are endangered, and as such the Guild will never permit targeted hunts and will only sign off on private quests if the specific beast is threatening a population center. This is [[GameplayAndStoryIntegration reflected in gameplay]], quests to hunt the Monoblos will only ever appear in the offline singleplayer "village" quests, and never in the online "guild" quests.

* Webcomic/OffWhite: There are no more baby humans being born because of the human white spirit's death. The comic implies this may also lead to the fading away of good, because she was the guardian of good, and the extinction of wolves, because they are a brother species.
* Webcomic/{{Tripp}}: The [[HumanAliens Narvans]], according to [[TinCanRobot Stats]].

* ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'':
** One episode had a mission for the Planet Express crew to rescue the animals from a planet which was about to be destroyed. That is where they find Leela's "pet" Nibbler. [[spoiler:Nibbler also eats all the endangered animals]].
** In another episode couched as a nature documentary, the Professor appears as the last male member of an endangered species of Galapagos giant tortoise, searching for the last female.
* ''WesternAnimation/TitanAE'': Humans themselves after the hostile Drej destroyed the entire planet, leaving the survivors scattered among the cosmos.
* One episode of the WesternAnimation/TheWildThornberrys had a tortoise that was [[ThereIsAnother (almost)]] the LastOfHisKind. Sadly TruthInTelevision, as he was based on a real tortoise called Lonesome George.
* An episode of WesternAnimation/TUFFPuppy had Prof. Birdbrain discover that his species, the blue-bottomed booby, is one and thus is legally protected. He uses this newly-discovered status to go on a crime spree, but ends up foiling himself when he clones a monster booby bird, thus making him no longer endangered and revoking his status.
* As of ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra'', the sky bison are now an endangered species (though since Appa was originally believed to be the LastOfHisKind this is actually an ''improvement''). Doesn't stop [[EvilPoacher evil poachers]] from stealing baby bison for the [[CruellaToAnimals Earth Queen]] to feast on.
* ''WesternAnimation/PurnoDePurno'': In the episode "Sunil Baba and the Forty Degrees", Purno states that his species, the Purnos, are an endangered species.

* Just run a search on the term "endangered species list" and try not to be too depressed. Though you can help by volunteering or making donations to save habitat, curb poaching and not buying certain products like ivory and unsustainable palm oil.