Animals we nearly lost to extinction

23 animals nearly lost to extinction
23 animals nearly lost to extinction

Over 40,000 animal and plant species are on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) red list of threatened species and over 16,00 endangered species are threatened by extinction.

"The rapid loss of species we are seeing today is estimated by experts to be between 1,000 and 10,000 times higher than the natural extinction rate," according to WWF Global.

These facts are bleak -- but there has been some success in recovering threatened species.

27 animals spent time on the endangered species list and were nearly lost to extinction, according to the US Fish and Wildlife Service. But thanks to efforts by conservationists, they have been recovered.

Click through the slide show below to see some of the now-thriving animals: