Nature

Extinct bird from Mauritius: Dodo

Looking back at world history, we come across many species that became extinct due to human activity. Endangered species include the Pyrenees ibex, Stellar seagull, Tasmanian tiger, quaga, and dodo. The dodo bird was the first to become extinct. The last recorded species of this bird endemic to the island of Mauritius was in 1662. In the 359 years since then, no dodo has been recorded in any part of the world, making it one of the world’s most endangered species.

Looking back at world history, we come across many species that became extinct due to human activity. Endangered species include the Pyrenees ibex, Stellar seagull, Tasmanian tiger, quaga, and dodo. The dodo bird was the first to become extinct. The last recorded species of this bird endemic to the island of Mauritius was in 1662. In the 359 years since then, no dodo has been recorded in any part of the world, making it one of the world’s most endangered species.

The appearance of the bird

By the time the dodo was first identified, the world was not technologically advanced. So the notes written about dodo by various sailors at that time helped to gain a later understanding of the dodo’s appearance. The pictures drawn by the explorers also gave an overview of the dodo’s appearance.

It is speculated that the dodo had blue, gray, white, and brown feathers. The bird also had short wings but could not fly. Dodo also had a large bronze beak. The average adult bird weighs about 50 pounds [50 kg]. In addition, the dodo bird had a short tail. The yellow dodo also had three toes on its front and one toe on its back.

Food eaten

According to reports written by sailors and explorers at the time, the following foods are believed to have been eaten by dodo birds. The distinctive feature of this bird was its increased consumption of plant foods.

1) Ripe fruits

2) Flower buds and leaves of trees

3) Potatoes and roots of certain plants

4) All types of grass

5) Types of small insects
Lifestyle

Dodo birds, which prefer to live in isolation, lived in pairs only during the breeding season. As the dodo was about to lay its eggs, it saw the male gathering various leafy branches to form a strong nest like a small mountain. After hatching, the male as well as the female participated in the task of protecting the nest. An unidentified dodo was not allowed within 200 meters of the cage. If an unidentified dodo enters, they are immediately chased away. Thus, it is safe to assume that dodo birds provide greater protection for their young because of their lower reproductive rate.

Reasons for extinction

Dodo birds, which lived in the distant past without any danger, became extinct very quickly, less than a century before they were discovered to the world. Historians speculate that the following may have contributed to the dodo’s extinction.
Hunting for meat

Between 1598-1662 many sailors and explorers came to the island of Mauritius. Those who came with them stayed on the island for months. Those who stayed there needed food. The only way they got food was by hunting. The dodo bird was quite indifferent and easily fell prey to poachers. Such endless poaching of dodo birds eventually led to their extinction.
Low fertility rate

Due to the low reproduction rate of dodo birds, they did not produce enough young to become extinct. Also some people used the eggs in the dodo cages to prepare food. As a result, many of the Dodo chicks that were about to be born became extinct. It was also one of the main reasons for the extinction of the dodo.
Arrival of various animals on the island with man

Animals such as dogs and cats also came with the human groups that came to Mauritius. During their stay on the island, they hunted a variety of animals. There, the animals also hunted dodo birds. It also caused the dodo to disappear from the world.
Habitat and food shortages

Dodo birds have lost their habitat due to the destruction caused by various human groups on the island of Mauritius. They also became extinct with the food they commonly consumed. Such loss of habitat and food posed a serious threat to Dodo’s survival. As a result, they disappeared from the world.

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