Passenger Pigeons: Native to N. America, flocks of birds at one time were so large it was said they could block out the sun. One flock in 1866 was described as being 1 mile wide, 300 miles long and took 14 hours to pass, with estimated numbers of birds in excess of 3.5 billion. The species went from being one of the most abundant birds in the world to extinction during the space of just 100 years. Martha, thought to be the world's last Passenger Pigeon, died on Sept. 1, 1914 at Cincinnati…

Passenger Pigeons: Native to N. America, flocks of birds at one time were so large it was said they could block out the sun. One flock in 1866 was described as being 1 mile wide, 300 miles long and took 14 hours to pass, with estimated numbers of birds in excess of 3.5 billion. The species went from being one of the most abundant birds in the world to extinction during the space of just 100 years. Martha, thought to be the world's last Passenger Pigeon, died on Sept. 1, 1914 at Cincinnati…

Martha, the last passenger pigeon. She died Sept 1, 1914, marking the 100th anniversary of the extinction.

Martha, the last passenger pigeon. She died Sept 1, 1914, marking the 100th anniversary of the extinction.

Girl with Passenger Pigeon. The extinction of the Passenger Pigeon had two major causes: commercial exploitation of pigeon meat on a massive scale and loss of habitat. Another significant reason for its extinction was deforestation.

Girl with Passenger Pigeon. The extinction of the Passenger Pigeon had two major causes: commercial exploitation of pigeon meat on a massive scale and loss of habitat. Another significant reason for its extinction was deforestation.

Ancient DNA Could Return Passenger Pigeons to the Sky Genetic engineering could restore the once profuse North American bird after a century...

Ancient DNA Could Return Passenger Pigeons to the Sky Genetic engineering could restore the once profuse North American bird after a century...

A Feathered River Across the Sky: The Passenger Pigeon's Flight to Extinction by Joel Greenberg

A Feathered River Across the Sky: The Passenger Pigeon's Flight to Extinction by Joel Greenberg

The Harvard Museum of Natural History recently opened an exhibit commemorating the 100th anniversary of the bird's extinction, in hopes of reminding the public of this cautionary tale.

The Harvard Museum of Natural History recently opened an exhibit commemorating the 100th anniversary of the bird's extinction, in hopes of reminding the public of this cautionary tale.

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