8 Facts About The Dodo Bird

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The Dodo Bird Lived on the Island of Mauritius

Lost pigeons found Mauritius. Evolved into 3ft dodo bird. Seen by Dutch in 1598. Extinct by 1662.

Until Humans, the Dodo Bird Had No Predators

The dodo lived a safe life until people arrived. They didn't know danger, so they were easily caught by settlers' pets.

The Dodo Was 'Secondarily Flightless'

Flying takes a ton of energy, so birds only do it when they really need to. When pigeons' ancestors reached their island home, they stopped flying and got bigger like turkeys.

The Dodo Bird Laid Only One Egg at a Time

Animals have babies to continue their species. Dodo birds only laid one egg because they had no predators. This caused problems when predators arrived.

The Dodo Bird Didn't 'Taste Like Chicken'

Dutch settlers ate dodo birds, even though they didn't taste great. They ate them because there weren't many food choices. Dodos ate yummy stuff, so their meat might have been good.

The Closest Relative Is the Nicobar Pigeon

The dodo's closest relative is the Nicobar pigeon, a smaller flying bird. Another relative was the Rodrigues solitaire, now extinct, also affected by human settlers.

The Dodo Was Once Called the 'Wallowbird'

The dodo bird got its name quickly, but there was a lot of confusion for 64 years. Some called it "wallowbird" or "penguin." We're not sure where "dodo" came from.

There Are Few Dodo Specimens

Dutch & Portuguese settlers of Mauritius hunted dodos. Some dodos sent to Europe died during the journey. Few remains are in museums now.