Have you heard this popular expression, "As dead as a dodo?" The dodo bird is one of the few species of extinct bird that has been described in modern times. It was last sighted about 600 years ago on Mauritius Island off the coast of Madagascar by Dutch settlers. Unfortunately, these amazing birds were driven to extinction even before photography could capture their likeness.
Fun Facts about the Dodo:
- The scientific name of the dodo is Raphus cucullatus.
- The dodo bird is an extinct species. It once lived on Mauritius island off the coast of Madagascar.
- Dodos were only found in Mauritius.
- Dodos were flightless.
- Although the dodo bird was viewed as clumsy, studies of its anatomy reveal that this bird could run at fast speeds. Scientists believe they didn't fly because they were not used to having natural enemies.
- Dodos were slow to reproduce as they laid only one egg at a time, also likely due to a lack of predators.
- Pigeons and other doves are dodos' distant relatives of pigeons.
- Dodos were vulnerable to humans and rats, and the introduction of domesticated animals threatened their existence.
- About a century after the sixteenth century, the only memories of dodos were a few written descriptions, paintings, and a small collection of bones.
- The last documented sighting of a dodo was in 1662.