Bird Families

Blue-billed Parrot / Lophopsittacus mauritianus


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    Rat-rabbit world

    • If the extinct rabbit rats were similar to modern pikas, their daytime droppings were green and their nighttime droppings were black. In addition, they too could eat some of their droppings so as not to lose nutrients.

    The world of the giant beaver

    Several species of kangaroo rats existed in different parts of Australia, some of which have become extinct. The broad-faced kangaroo rat shown in the illustration, for example, disappeared completely from Western Australia in the early 20th century.

    John Gilbert, the great 19th century British explorer and naturalist, captured one broad-faced kangaroo rat for his collection when it was already a rare animal in its natural Australian habitat. In Europe, there have never been kangaroo rats, which got their name from their resemblance to rodents. Soon, around 1908, this species became extinct, in part due to forest fires that literally burned these animals.

    Gilbert also had a potoru species named after him, but Gilbert's kangaroo rat had become completely extinct in Western Australia a few years earlier, in 1900. This animal had a black tail and a characteristic black stripe that crossed its muzzle in the center, according to Gilbert's reports, it lived in dense thickets along streams and rivers.

    Ancient baby kangaroo

    There is also another type of this animal known as the long-nosed kangaroo rat. In fact, it is the oldest Australian kangaroo, despite its modest size - only 20 cm - and has even been described as actually a living fossil.

    This is because, according to scientists, it looks the same as it did many millions of years ago. But for many years he has not been seen either in the west or in the south of Australia, and it is likely that he became extinct in these places. Today it is only known for certain that it exists on the island of Tasmania.

    Habitat time: some species are alive to this day, others became extinct before 1908
    The size: up to 60 cm in length
    Diet: vegetation and waste
    Areal: thickets of bushes along riverbeds in Australia
    Other data: marsupials, fell prey to cats, foxes and people, long tails, the scientific name for Gilbert's kangaroo rat Potorous gilberti.


    Debois the Shepherd - an extinct bird of the shepherd family. It lived in Cuba. The last mention dates back to 1625. Fragments of bird bones were found in 1916 by Theodore de Bois in a kitchen in the Virgin Islands. The bird became extinct before the arrival of the Europeans, but there were rumors that in 1912 an individual of this species was caught and named Carrao. She was exterminated for the sake of juicy meat.

    Martinique Macaw (lat. Ara martinica ) Is a species of birds of the parrot family, a subfamily of true parrots. Lived on the island of Martinique,

    Ascension shepherd boy. Wingless dergach (lat. Mundia elpenor ) - the bird was an endemic species of Ascension Island. The last mentions date back to 1656. an extinct flightless bird from the shepherd family.

    The bird's appearance is known only from the drawing and description of Peter Mundi, who visited Ascension Island in 1656. It was a small bird, about 22 cm long, grayish-black in color with white streaks. She had strong legs and very short wings. The birds lived in semi-arid areas, ran well and quickly, but did not fly. They fed mainly on the eggs of the dark tern, and, probably, on small animals. It died out after the appearance of rats on the island in the 18th century, possibly survived until 1815. After the appearance of cats on the island, he disappeared completely. Was declared completely extinct in 1994

    Rodriguez parrot Is an extinct bird of the Parrot family. The length is possibly about 50 cm. It is assumed that the main color of the plumage was green. The tail is long. The beak is large. Mascarene Islands (Rodrigues and the Offshore Islands, Mauritius)

    red chicken. Aphanapteryx bonasia (English) Russian. - an extinct flightless bird of the shepherd family, endemic to the island of Mauritius. The first bird descriptions date back to 1602, and the last sightings date back to 1693.

    Reunion Sacred Ibis (English) Russian. or bourbon dodo (lat. Threskiornis solitarius ) Is an extinct bird of the ibis family, endemic to Reunion Island. The first mentions date back to 1613, and was originally considered to be related to the Dodo. The last mentions date back to 1705.

    Reunion pink pigeon (lat. Nesoenas duboisi ) Is an extinct bird of the pigeon family. It was first described by S. Dubois in 1674, later L. Rothschild named it in honor of the discoverer. The last mentions date back to 1705.

    (blue doves are also extinct)

    Madagascar blue pigeon - endemic to Madagascar, Seychelles - Seychelles. The Comoros blue pigeon lives in the Comoros, including Mayotte, and the Seychelles.

    Two extinct species inhabited the Mascarene Islands: Alectroenas nitidissima - Mauritius, Alectroenas rodericana - Rodriguez Island.

    Thick-billed crested pigeon or crested pigeon Mika or Choiseul pigeon (lat. Microgoura meeki ) Is an extinct bird species of the pigeon families at the beginning of the 20th century.

    The bird was endemic to Choiseul Island, one of the Solomon Islands. It had a length of about 30 cm. A crest, similar to that of crowned pigeons. She lived mainly in the swampy forests of the island, settling for the night on the lower branches of trees. Only occasionally flying out into the open, the pigeon lived mainly on the ground, and this is probably what led to its death.

    The main reason for the extinction of the species was probably the introduction of a domestic cat to the island.

    The indigenous people of Choiseul Island call this beautiful low-flying bird corn-ni-lua, which means “land bird”.

    The indigenous people skillfully imitated the vibrating cry of this bird.

    Passenger pigeon

    The most striking and illustrative example of methodical extermination is history wandering pigeon... Once upon a time, multimillion flocks of these birds flew in the sky of North America. Seeing food, pigeons, like a huge locust, rushed down, and when they were full, they flew away, completely destroying fruits, berries, nuts, and insects. Naturally, such gluttony irritated the colonists. In addition, the pigeons tasted very good. Therefore, the extermination of pigeons turned into fun. In one of Fenimore Cooper's novels, it is very well described how, when a flock of pigeons approached, the entire population of cities and towns poured into the streets, armed with slingshots, rifles, and sometimes even cannons. They killed as many pigeons as they could. The pigeons were laid in ice cellars, cooked right away, fed the dogs, or simply thrown away. Even pigeon shooting competitions were organized, and towards the end of the 19th century machine guns were also used.

    Passenger pigeon or migratory pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius) Is an extinct bird of the pigeon family.Until the 19th century, it was one of the most common birds on Earth, the total number of which was estimated at 3-5 billion individuals.

    The last wandering pigeon, Martha, died at the zoo in 1914.

    This species of Australian grass-tailed parrots has never been plentiful: but the most recent pair of lively beautiful parrots were spotted in Queensland, Australia in 1927, some 80 years after they were first described by naturalist John Gilbert.
    What wonderful birds they were, judging by the descriptions of that time! The males had a red forehead, and the lower abdomen and thighs were also red. Females were distinguished by a light yellow forehead and a pale blue belly, sometimes with red blotches.
    They were very trusting, and therefore it was very easy to catch them, which led to a drop in the number of wild individuals.
    But their behavior was somewhat strange. Instead of nesting in trees or on the ground, as most other birds do, the beautiful parrot female usually buried itself in an empty termite mound.

    Habitat time: before 1927
    The size: 28cm long
    Opened: in Australia

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