Being in a tropical country like Malaysia, we are blessed with hundreds of rainforests around the country.

And with that many rainforests, we have thousands of tree species that can only be found in Malaysia.

Unfortunately, a lot of them are going extinct.

Dire straits

According to a landmark report published by Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI) on Wednesday (1 September), thousands of tree species in Malaysia are facing extinction.

The State of the World's Trees report revealed that more than 17,500 tree species -- which is 30 per cent of the world's total -- are at risk of extinction.

The report also found that 440 tree species have less than 50 of them left in the wild, Reuters reported.

The number is pretty eye-opening, considering that the overall number of tree species that are under risk is double the number of threatened mammals, birds, amphibians and reptiles combined.

Magnolias and dipterocarps, which are most commonly found in Southeast Asian rainforests, are listed as the most at-risk tree species.

Ebonies, maple trees and oak trees are also facing extinction, the report revealed.

Six countries are at risk

Here's the sad news: almost a third of the world's tree species that are at risk of extinction can mostly be found in six countries around the world - and Malaysia is one of them!

According to the report, Malaysia joins Brazil, Indonesia, China, Venezuela and Colombia as the top six countries in the world for tree-species diversity where its tree species are most threatened.

Brazil tops the list at 1,788 species.

The largest threats to the tree species are timber logging, livestock farming and crop production, the report said.

The extreme weather and climate change are also emerging as threats, as 180 tree species are reportedly directly threatened by severe weather and rising seas.

Things are going from bad to worse for our rainforests, so it is high time we take care of them.