There are many types of animals which are extinct. Many now-extinct animals actually flourished for a few hundred thousand years before they vanished forever. Some were around for millions of years and had nothing but time to adapt and evolve before they disappeared from the face of the Earth. Others died out in a relatively shorter amount of time, often due to changes in their environment or fierce competition from other species moving in with them on their land.
1. Passenger Pigeon
The passenger Pigeon is the most well-known passenger bird. This is because it is notable for being the most abundant bird species in North America, living in vast flocks that could stretch across 5,000 km of territory.
The Passenger pigeon is a large pigeon with a light brown body and gray wings and tail feathers. Their body is slim and their legs short. It has a pale face with horns above its eyes, but these are often not visible in the wild due to wearing feathers. It has a bright red bill and feet which help camouflage it in the forests where it lived. Its coloration helped blend into woodland habitats where it foraged for food, including seeds, fruits, shoots, and roots. Passenger Pigeons were hunted by humans to extinction by 1900. The last known of the passenger pigeons, named Martha, died on Sept. 1, 1914, in the Cincinnati Zoo in Ohio. Thus joining the list of animals which are extinct.
2. Woolly Mammoth
A woolly mammoth is a species of mammoth that lived during the last ice age. They were adapted to living in cold environments and had a thick coat of fur composed mostly of long, soft hair. Woolly mammoths joined the list of animals which are extinct around 10,000 years ago at the end of the Pleistocene era, likely due to hunting by humans and climate change.
Woolly mammoths are known for their distinctive tusks which taper towards the tip rather than pointing straight down as seen in many other animals. Recent studies from their fossils proved that the tusks functioned as a type of defense against predators. Mammoths are thought to have lived in Arctic environments.
3. Ivory-Billed Woodpecker
An ivory-billed woodpecker has a beautiful iridescent plumage with white-tipped wings. Their head is black, back, wings and tail are white and blue, and they display a red bill during the breeding season. They also have a metallic purple sheen on their belly and chest during this season. Ivory-billed woodpeckers build nests in cavities of live and dead trees in deserts or semi-desert habitats. It is the smallest member of the woodpecker family, Mimidae; adults weigh 5–11 grams.
Little is known about the habits and lifestyle of this bird. Most likely, Ivory-Billed Woodpeckers live in flocks and eat insects and nectar from flowers along with fruits and nuts.
They were declared on the endangered species list long ago, but alas became the newest member to join the list of animals which are extinct, when they were declared extinct in September 2021, by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
4. Tasmanian Tiger
The Tasmanian tiger, also known as the thylacine, was an Australian marsupial sometimes called a “marsupial wolf”. It was the last living member of its genus, Thylacinus.
They are usually black with white stripes on their stomachs. Adult males are generally larger than adult females and have a ridge of hair running along their backs to their tails. They also have large, sharp teeth. They were the largest living carnivorous marsupial of modern times.
Not much is known about the behavior of these animals, although they were observed by European settlers in the 19th century. The last known Tiger was captured in 1930. Resulting in them joining the list of animals which are extinct.
5. Pyrenean Ibex
The Pyrenean ibex, or bucardo, is a wild mountain goat that inhabited the Pyrenees mountain range. It was one of the four subspecies of the Iberian Ibex. It has a diet primarily consisting of grasses and herbs on steep cliffs. The Pyrenean ibex’s predators included wolves, golden eagles, red foxes, and human beings.
The Pyrenean Ibex joined the list of animals which are extinct in January 2000, but there have been recent attempts to bring it back from extinction with cloning methods. In 2003 scientists manages to clone it, but it died in 10 minutes owing to heart failure.
6. Steller’s Sea Cow
Steller’s sea cow was a remarkable creature that lived in the North Pacific. It was an odd-looking beast with a thick wrinkly hide and broadhead that was said to look like a bishop’s miter. The sea cow would plunge beneath the water, using its large flat tail to propel itself along. Its eyes were larger than human eyes and it had a layer of fat on its head through which blood vessels could be seen. Its diet consisted almost entirely of kelp.
At its peak, their population may have reached as high as 200,000 individuals, but after commercial hunting began in 1768, it was reduced to 1,000 by 1788. By 1768 the population had been reduced by 95% and then down to just 200 individuals that year. They were officially declared endangered in 1768 and later that year they joined the list of animals that are extinct. Although few people have reported sightings of the animal well into the 1800s.
7. Bachman’s Warbler
The Bachman’s Warbler is a species of bird endemic to the United States. This beautiful songbird has been around since the Pleistocene era. The habitat loss of the birds was due to urban development and other human activity such as logging and agriculture.
When the birds were first discovered, it was also found in the Florida wild. They were protected by the endangered species act, but, due to habitat destruction and excessive shooting by humans, it saw a steep decline in populations up until 29th September 2021, when the US Fish and Wildlife Service declared that it joined the list of animals which are extinct.
8. Yangtze River Dolphin
Also known as the baiji or whitefin dolphin, was a freshwater river dolphin found only in China. The baiji is one of two subspecies of the finless porpoise (the other subspecies is L. sibbaldii). The baiji has been extinct in the wild since 2006 but remains alive in captivity. A captive breeding program has been instituted at Tian-e-Zhou or “Heavenly Lake” nature reserve. The last known free-swimming member of the species, a female named Qiqi, lived at the aquarium in Chongqing Imperial University until it closed on July 10, 2006. She died on December 14, 2006. Resulting in them joining the list of animals that are extinct.
The baiji has been described as “the most adorable creature on the planet” because it is so rare and so gentle-natured. In addition, it is also a keystone species, having a very low rate of natural extinction. They were much more tolerant of water pollution than other river dolphins because they excrete large amounts of foul-smelling blubber.
9. The Great Auk
The Great Auk is a flightless bird that inhabited the waters of North Atlantic islands in the 18th century. They were hunted to extinction by European seafarers, who had never seen this species before.
The Blue Bird’s last year on Earth was in 1844 when its eggs were found in an abandoned fishing hut. The eggs were taken to Edinburgh for education and conservation, but they quickly started to rot and died at an institution. They are now on display at Edinburgh Zoo as a memorial for these beautiful birds.
The Great Auk had black feathers with white spots on its wings and back, making it look like a penguin. It lived on islands in the North Atlantic Ocean, which have now been named after them, such as Great Auk Island off Newfoundland, Canada. They had joined the list of animals which are extinct much earlier.
If you love animals, then you should be upset about the number of animals that are now extinct. With increased human development, increased climate change, and other factors, there are now dozens of animals that are extinct. How will the planet survive without these animals? Humans, the invasive species must do something so this doesn’t keep happening. This list of animals that are extinct is getting longer each day.