The extinction of dodo birds is attributed largely to human activities. Dodos were large and flightless birds that lived on the eastern side of Madagascar. They lived and thrived on the island through the later part of the 17th century until the arrival of European settlers.
On Madagascar, dodos had plentiful food supplies but very few natural predators. Therefore, their population levels remained quite strong, and the birds had enough resources to keep their population levels high. They continued to thrive in Madagascar through the late 1600s, when the arrival of European settlers quickly put an end to their reproductive success. With the settlers came competition for food, water and living space, as settlers soon outcompeted the native birds for berries, fish and other products derived from the forests and waterways. The settlers also converted the lands to grow agricultural crops such as sugar cane, tobacco and cotton. In the process, they destroyed the natural environments, including the homes and food sources, of the dodos, which had immediate detrimental effects. European settlers also brought domestic animals and livestock, such as cats, dogs, pigs and sheep. Predatory mammals (such as dogs) killed the dodos, while the herbivorous creatures consumed the same foods as the birds and took over their living spaces.Learn More
An "extinct species" is a species of organism that can no longer be found in the wild or in captivity. A species is a classification of organisms which can reproduce successfully with one another.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 >
The northern white rhinoceros is considered critically endangered and is nearly extinct in the wild. As of 2014, there are only four left. Poaching drastically reduced its numbers during the 20th century. The southern white rhinoceros is not critically endangered. In 2012, there were approximately 20,000 in Africa.Full Answer >
Coastal erosion is caused by a number of factors, including natural processes such as the wind, rain and waves, as well as human activities, such as the damming of rivers. Additionally, when barrier islands are destroyed, the coastline becomes more susceptible to the destructive forces of storms and hurricanes. Barrier islands help to absorb some of these destructive forces and protect the coastline.Full Answer >