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10 of the cutest endangered species

By: Laura Moss on Sept. 20, 2012, 5:57 p.m.
sand cat kitten

Photo: Junko Kimura/Getty Images

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Conservation competition

While all endangered species are worth saving, it comes as no surprise that the cute and fuzzy members of the animal kingdom stand a better chance of protection. According to research scientist Ernie Small, after “the cuddlies” and the "poster species" like whales and elephants, human conservation efforts tend to stall.

In addition to those animals that make us go "aww," big predators and species that are useful or commercially important top the list of the most-protected species. The losers in this competition are mostly plants, reptiles and amphibians, which are some of the most endangered groups in the world.

In honor of Endangered Species Day, here’s our list of the world’s most adorable endangered species — but not all of them are quite as cuddly as the sand cat kitten pictured here. (Text: Laura Moss)