Dodo birds became extinct because of the combination of overhunting by humans and non-native predators that were introduced by humans to their native island. Dodo birds only inhabited the island of Mauritius, where they had no natural predators. Accordingly, the dodo bird had lost the power of flight and possessed few defensive behaviors by the time humans arrived on the island.Know More
Dodo birds were eaten by Dutch settlers who colonized the island. Because the birds could not fly and were clumsy when walking, they were easy for the humans to catch. Even though the birds did not taste very good, the settlers hunted them ruthlessly, preserving those they could not eat immediately.
While this overhunting was an important factor in their extinction, it was nest-raiding predators, such as rats, cats and monkeys, that caused the most damage to the dodo. As dodo birds only produce one egg at a time, they could not cope with the intense pressure they faced in the introduced animals.
It only took about 75 years for humans and introduced animals to completely eradicate the strange birds. While no living person has ever seen a dodo bird alive, some scientists hope to produce living specimens by using DNA contained in the fossils, bones and feathers kept in museums.Learn more about Birds
The dodo bird lived on the isolated Mascarene Islands, east of Madagascar. The Mascarene Islands have a warm, tropical climate during the summer and the dodo had no enemies within its habitat.Full Answer >
The last confirmed sighting of a dodo bird occurred in 1662 on the small island of Mauritus. Unconfirmed sightings persisted until the 1690s, but most experts agree the bird species was fully extinct by 1700.Full Answer >
A reduction in bird populations leads to more plant damage from insect consumption and more diseases spread to humans, according to a study published in 2004 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The study predicted 10 percent of all bird species will disappear by 2100.Full Answer >
The heaviest flying birds are the kori bustard and the great bustard, which can both weigh up to 42 pounds each. The males of each species are the largest, with females weighing far less.Full Answer >