Few would deny that man’s impact on earth has had a terrible effect on the natural world. Habitats are becoming destroyed and polluted, causing millions of species to lose their homes. In addition to habitat destruction, other animals are also hunted relentlessly, often in unsustainable numbers. This has caused many species to disappear perhaps forever, and it is also likely that more will be lost as well. We have learned a great deal about our impact on the earth in recent decades, and many people are making efforts to stop the decline. In some cases, this is even having a positive effect on the numbers of endangered species.
While it may seem at first that these extinct animals are gone forever, there is some hope that some may return. Cloning technology is advancing significantly, and it might sound like something from Jurassic Park but we might one day be able to bring some of them back to life. Until then, we are left trying to limit the damage we are still causing, and learning from our mistakes.
While countless species have become extinct, some resonate with us more than others. Here’s a look at some of the better-known species to have been lost.
Extinct Animal #10: Dodo
If there is one animal that springs to mind when it comes to extinct species, it’s the dodo. The dodo is synonymous with extinction, and is used as a symbol for wildlife preservation worldwide. The dodo made its home in Mauritius, and there they lived quite happily with no threats until man arrived. Predictably, we started to kill them in their droves, but we were not the only problem that they faced. As well as having to deal with us, the hapless dodo also had to deal with what we bought with us.
Pigs, rats and other animals savaged the dodos and their nests. The dodo had evolved on its island with no natural predators. This meant they had no natural defense against attack, and they were easy prey. The dodo also had no natural defense against the diseases that were introduced, and their numbers were ravaged. All that’s left now is a single skeleton and some drawings.