People are not always moderate, especially when it comes to tasty things. Although the disappearance of species has many causes, the extermination of some of them can be directly linked to the insatiable appetite of humans. In this article we present some species of missing animals that we have lost because of the monstrous and unhealthy appetite of our own species.
These missing species of animals are the testimony of the effects of man’s greed and make us think better about how we should protect nature.
1. The Dodo bird – Raphus cucullatus
These birds, who did not fly and nest their nests on Earth, once inhabited the island of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean. Larger than the turkeys, the Dodo birds weighed about 23 pounds and had a blue-gray plum and a big head.
Without having natural predators, the birds began to be hunted by the Portuguese sailors, who discovered them around 1507. These sailors quickly decimated the population of Dodo birds, which were a source of meat for them.
The subsequent introduction of pigs, monkeys and rats on the island proved to be a catastrophe for birds because the mammals fed their eggs. The last Dodo bird was killed in 1681, the animal officially entering the missing animal species list.
Unfortunately, there are very few specimens exhibited in museums.
2. Steller’s Sea Cow – Hydrodamalis Gigas
Discovered in 1741 by German naturalist Georg W. Steller, sea cows once inhabited the coastal areas of the Komandor Islands in the Bering Sea. These animals were 9-10 meters in length and weighed about 10 tonnes.
These massive and docile animals floated in coastal waters but could not sink. Thus, they became easy targets for Russian hunter seals, who used them as food during their long journeys at sea.
The species was exterminated in 1768, less than 30 years after it was discovered. No specimens were preserved.
3. Passenger pigeon – Ectopistes migratorius
Here’s another example on the missing animal list. Once famous for numerous migratory flies, the passenger pigeon was hunted until disappearing at the beginning of the twentieth century.
Millions of specimens once lived in eastern North America. As the American colonists advanced westward, the birds were hunted for meat. The Hunters fed the place where birds lay their eggs and annihilate entire colonies in one mating season.
In 1870, the decline was evident and attempts were made to multiply birds in captivity, but unsuccessfully. The last known passenger dove, named Martha, died on September 1, 1914, at the Cincinnati Zoo in Ohio.
4. Extinct species – Bourul
One of the ancestors of the modern cow, bourul , was a large, wild bovine species that once inhabited Europe, Siberia and Central Asia. It was 1.8 meters high up to the shoulder and large, curved horns in front.
He had an aggressive temperament and was used to fight in the Roman arenas. This animal was hunted excessively and disappeared from many areas. Until the 13th century, the population had so low that the right to hunt the animal was granted only to the nobles in Eastern Europe.
In 1564 there were only 38 copies. The last known piece, a female, died in 1627 in Poland, from natural causes.
5. The Great Auk – Pinguinus impennis
Here’s one of those species of missing animals hunted to the last specimen. The Great Auk was a sea bird that could not fly. Birds multiplied in colonies on the rocky islands of the North Atlantic, St. Louis. Kilda, the Faroe Islands, Iceland, and the Funk islands.
Birds were about 75 centimeters in length and short wings, used for underwater swimming. Without defense, the animals were killed by rapacious hunters, especially at the beginning of the nineteenth century.
The last known specimens were killed in 1844, on Eldey Island, Iceland, and were exhibited in the museum.
6. Disappeared animals because of man – Woolly mammoth
Thanks to well-preserved corpses in Siberia, the woolly mammoth is the best known mammoth species. These massive animals disappeared about 7,500 years ago, after the end of the last ice age.
Climate change certainly played a role in their disappearance, but recent studies indicate that people also had their part to blame.
Excessive hunting and the effects of global warming were a deadly combination. It seems that the mammoth did not withstand man’s greed, in a changing world.