11 Cute endangered animals we need to save

by Ally Hirschlag
May 6, 2015 at 10:30 a.m. ET

Sand cats are the only cats that live in true deserts. They're sandy in color, have long tails, very short legs and are known to adapt well to the extreme heat and cold. 

1 /11: Mexican axolotl

1/11 :Mexican axolotl

Known as the "Peter Pan" of animals (because it spends its whole life in larval form), this smiley little guy can only be found in Mexico's Lake Xochimilco. Fun fact: It can regenerate its body parts!

2 /11: Ili pika

2/11 :Ili pika

The Ili pika is one of the more illusive endangered species on this list. It was first sited in China in 1983 and wasn't seen again until 2014. It looks like a shorter rabbit with rounded ears. 

3 /11: Pygmy hippo

3/11 :Pygmy hippo

Pygmy hippos look just like their full-sized relatives, but they only grow to be about 2-1/2 feet tall. Their primary threat is loss of habitat due to deforestation, but they're also hunted extensively.

4 /11: Egyptian tortoise

4/11 :Egyptian tortoise

The Egyptian tortoise, or Kleinmann's tortoise, is one of the smallest tortoises in the world. There are only 7,500 left in the wild due to habitat destruction and illegal hunting.

5 /11: Pileated gibbon

5/11 :Pileated gibbon

These little guys are native to Thailand, and there are only 32,000 left in the world. Males are all black, while females are white/gray with black faces and bellies. They live together in monogamous pairs. 

6 /11: Amur leopard

6/11 :Amur leopard

The Amur leopard is perhaps the most endangered on this list, with only 19 to 26 left in the wild. The males have been known to stay with the females long after mating to help rear their cubs.

7 /11: Black-footed ferret

7/11 :Black-footed ferret

The black-footed ferret is considered one of America's greatest success stories. They were declared extinct in 1979, but scientists found a colony of 61 and numbers have since climbed to 1,000.

8 /11: Finless porpoise

8/11 :Finless porpoise

The Yangtze finless porpoise is one of only two dolphin species to live in the Yangtze river. It's known for its mischievious smile, and its intelligence is comparable to a gorilla's.

9 /11: Galapagos penguin

9/11 :Galapagos penguin

Native to the Galapagos in South America, this is the only penguin that lives near the equator. It is the second smallest penguin in the world and is recovering from a 70 percent population decline in the 1980s. 

10 /11: Giant panda

10/11 :Giant panda

The giant panda is the rarest member of the bear family and is a national treasure in China. They must eat 26 to 84 pounds a day and can weigh up to 330 pounds. 

11 /11: Pin endangered animals

11/11 :Pin endangered animals