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Extinct Animals from Recent Years to the Saber-Toothed Cat

Angela, an animal lover, has a passion for learning and understanding God's creatures. As a born teacher, she enjoys sharing her knowledge.

It is amazing how many animals had once walked this earth and are no longer around. Many met their demise due to unwise decisions of the people whom God placed to look after them. Pollution, destruction of rainforests, and global warming are a few of the most popular reasons people will cite for the extinction of animals. Unfortunately, the most easily preventable cause has ended several entire species of animals, and that is hunting, trapping, and poaching. Although each species below became extinct through different means, they all found their demise in the past two hundred years.

2009 - Pyrenean Ibex

Extinct since 2009: This is one of the most newly extinct animals in existence, or rather non-existence. Their original extinction date was in 2000, when the last natural Pyrenean Ibex died in captivity on January 6, 2000. She was a female named Celia and was killed by a falling tree. In 2000, the scientist decided to bring back this species through cloning. It was momentarily successful for about 7 minutes, the length the cloned Pyrenean Ibex lived before it died of breathing problems. Even if they were to have a more successful clone of the Pyrenean Ibex, they only have DNA from a female; therefore, there is no male for it to breed with.

2006 - Baiji River Dolphin

Functionally Extinct Since 2006: This dolphin was believed to have its numbers eliminated due to entanglement in fishing gear in China, where it initially originated. In the past five decades, China has been fishing more and more in the rivers where they once thrived. Although some believe that some may remain, in 2006, a six-week study revealed that there were none detected. Although some are still alive, they have been declared "functionally extinct," which means if there are some that still exist, there are not enough to allow the species to continue and thrive. The last documented sighting was in 2007, although none have been recorded.

1989 - Golden Toad

Extinct Since 1989: Two years before the last sighting of the previous golden toad, there was an American biologist who studied the area where they were prevalent. At this time, the scientist counted over 1500 of them in breeding pools.

Unfortunately, that spring was unusually warm and dry, and most of these breeding pools dried up before the tadpoles could mature into a full-grown toad. In 1988, only one male and two females were sighted at one breeding site; another site had seven males and two females. In 1989, the last male toad was seen, and no other females. The final survey was done in 1994 when no golden toads were left, and the species was considered extinct.

1936 - Thylacine

Extinct Since 1936: The thylacine was also known as the Tasmanian wolf or Tasmanian tiger. It was native to Tasmania, New Guinea, and Australia. Most people believe that the massive hunting of these animals caused their extinction. Some claim that the animal is still around today, with possible sightings of this creature. None of these sightings are confirmed. If a creature has not been sighted for over 50 years, it is declared extinct.

Despite its misleading alternate names, it is not related to either the wolf or tiger. It is a marsupial. One of the few who have both males and females carry their young in their pouch. In 1936, the last known living thylacine, named Benjamin, who lived in captivity, died.

Hopefully, the reports are accurate, and this animal still exists.

1 September 1914 - Passenger Pigeon

The last known passenger pigeon died on September 1, 1914, at 29 years old. The extinction of this bird was tragic because it happened so suddenly and due to men using the bird for their interest. When Europeans landed on American soil, passenger pigeons made up 40 percent of the total bird population, and there were at least three billion alive. By the time of the twentieth century, passenger pigeons became scarce.

They migrated and stayed together in huge groups that would darken the sky as they flew overhead. They were fast, too, flying at about 60 miles per hour. One of the major contributing factors to their extinction was the loss of land. Because their groups were abundant, they needed large tree-covered areas to rest. Unfortunately, as the regions dwindled, so did this bird. Then in the 1800s, hunters began hunting them and selling them in markets for food. A law was passed in Michigan to protect these birds in 1897; it was too late. The last passenger pigeon known to have been alive was named Martha and died on September 1, 1914.

Quagga - Picture taken in 1870.

Quagga - Picture taken in 1870.

1883 - Quagga

Extinct since 1883: This animal looks like a cross between a zebra and a donkey, initially habituated in dry parts of South Africa in grasslands. It is believed to have become extinct because humans hunted it for its hide and meat. The last known living quagga died in 1883 in captivity. The last one in the wild was believed to have died a decade earlier.

The quagga was the first extinct animal to have its DNA tested. They discovered that the quagga is more closely related to the zebra than they had previously thought and possibly the same animal, with different variations. With this knowledge, in 2006, scientists began trying to breed back the quagga by carefully selecting its parents. They were able to reproduce after three or four generations of animals to an animal that looks very close to the quagga.

Dodo - Now, all we have our the dodo's fossils.

Dodo - Now, all we have our the dodo's fossils.

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17th Century - Dodo

Extinct Mid to Late 17th Century: The dodo is probably one of the most famous extinct animals with portrayals in such movies as Disney's version of Alice in Wonderland. It stood about 3 feet and nested on the ground. The dodo was one of the first extinct animals known in human recorded history, which is why it is so famous. Many believe that humans were the result of their demise in the mid to late seventeenth century. Not only was the dodo bird flightless, but it was also not afraid of humans. Its diet mainly consisted of fruit.

There is speculation that the current portrayal of a dodo bird is inaccurate; they believe that the images of these birds we often see were overfed. Since they lived in captivity, their caretakers may have been feeding them excessively. The birds in the wild most likely were much thinner than the traditional portrayal of these birds.

BC - Saber-Toothed Tiger

Extinct BC: The Saber-Toothed Tiger was more closely related to the lion than a tiger. The more appropriate names are the Smilodon and the Saber-Toothed Cat. They were known for their saber-shaped teeth that measured as long as 28 centimeters or 11 inches. They are the most prolonged teeth in the cat family, although their bite was weaker than many other big cats still around today. Their teeth's weakness may be part of why they became extinct, and the teeth themselves were somewhat fragile and could easily become damaged. They became extinct nearly 1.6 million years ago.

More and more animals become extinct or endangered each year. Many are due to human activity, either because humans hunt them or move into their habitat. Now we are not the only cause, but we are a culprit in many extinctions and endangerments. So let's take care of our world.


  • Campbell, Cameron. "The Thylacine Museum - A Natural History of the Tasmanian Tiger." Go to the NATURAL WORLDS introduction page. Accessed February 26, 2018.
  • Moss, Laura. "10 animals presumed extinct in the last decade." MNN - Mother Nature Network. May 31, 2017. Accessed February 26, 2018.
  • "Saber Tooth Tiger Facts | Behavior, Habitat, Diet, Extinction, Species." Animals Time. February 04, 2018. Accessed February 26, 2018.

© 2010 Angela Michelle Schultz


Kaley on May 07, 2019:

I really love animals what can we do to save them

kale on May 07, 2019:

I love animals what about the snowy owl

Alex Anghel from Romania on November 24, 2017:

There are so many species now threatened to be extinct. We humans should be aware that by disturbing the balance we will pay the price.

Lili maria on March 02, 2017:

Dodo's bones is beautiful

I like that wolf

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on October 24, 2010:

That's kind of the point of pointing out the animals that have become extinct. When we become aware of the animals that have become extinct, then we can better understand why animals of today are endangered and ways to prevent that.

JASON NICHOLS on October 24, 2010:

I say forget the past and think about the future. If you all think about the animals that have become extinct, What about the animals of today they are also becoming extinct and people are killing them or they are dying due to some reason. Eg= dolphins, lions, tigers, white lions and tigers, bird's etc. Please save them first.

fast diet tips on September 06, 2010:

Those creatures are really magnificent. sad to say our amazement will come to end because we people are also the ones who destroyed them T_T.. this issue is already been addressed many years ago but people are not listening.

fast diet tips on September 06, 2010:

Those creatures are really magnificent. sad to say our amazement will come to end because we people are also the ones who destroyed them T_T.. this issue is already been addressed many years ago but people are not listening.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on August 11, 2010:

I actually think I agree with you starchild. There are so many other scientific things that we should work towards, like finding ways to prevent cancer or other things like that. But that is my opinion?

StarChild11 on August 11, 2010:

It is sad that some animals go extinct because of us, but we should be cloning them. We had our chance to help some of these animals but we failed. We should learn from our mistakes and work to preserve the animals we have now; not play god.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on July 10, 2010:

TH, you do have a very legitimate point. I do have mixed feelings. How much is supposed to happen, and how much is because a lack of concern for things around us. I don't know. By the way, I think the shark will be around for awhile. I'd be more worried if house cats became extinct personally.

tom hellert from home on July 10, 2010:


People say liva and let live I say live and let die-had the dinosaurs lived they may have been dealing with the death of mamals and said what does it mean that these little critters have died off... who knows what may have happened had the dinos not died out around 65 mya!!! the only creature I am truly worried about for extinction is the shark....


Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on June 20, 2010:

Thanks Mquee for the nice comment. We really need to be thinking about the habitat we are invading on before we build. I'm glad there are many people out there making their stand. Making a difference.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on June 20, 2010:

lol outdoorsguy, I have heard that before!!!

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on June 20, 2010:

Tom, interesting, I have not really heard any true evidence of the rock theory. Maybe someday I'll look into it, so I can better understand that. :) I'm so glad you stopped by. My grandma used to have a cat that looked like the thylacine.

mquee from Columbia, SC on June 20, 2010:

Very good hub on a subject that we should all pay more attention to. Habitat for wild animals is being encroached upon more and more every day. Thanks for a very educational hub.

outdoorsguy from Tenn on June 18, 2010:

Well Dallas Id have to agree with that. besides, the latest surgeons generals warning is that life is the leading cause of death. LOL.

tom hellert from home on June 18, 2010:

The Thylacine looks like my cat...As for everything else had a big old rock not crashed into the earth 65.5 million years ago we might all be talking dinosaurs...talking on the dino-world-net. d we be chastized for that? aaaalife is a big dice throw and its akways best to be the shooter if you're gonna win. anotice the irony.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on June 11, 2010:

dallas, thanks for clarifying that for us.

Dallas W Thompson from Bakersfield, CA on June 11, 2010:

outdoorsguy, good to question ! One does not have to be present to know how many are extinct. Fossil records etc indicate most bio systems change, or become extinct... including animals, plants and etc. 98% may or may not be a valid number. Point is, most prior life as we know it, (evidence thereof) is not living now.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on June 07, 2010:

I was debating on whether you were serious, or whether that was a joke about goldentoad?

Anyway, I loved Born Free, in fact, I wish I could see that again, it's been so long. I also was a big Ranger Rick magazine!

Kari Poulsen from Ohio on June 07, 2010:

My favorite film as a child was "Born Free". I have always believed in conservation...even as far back as my "Ranger Rick" magazines. "Functionally extinct" is a very hopeless term, and I am glad I do not belong to that species. How would it be to know that your children really don't have a chance in a million of meeting a mate?

On a brighter (*please don't let this be inappropriate!*) note...a goldentoad was spotted on HubPages last year. He stayed a played with us for a while, but, sadly, decided to move on to new pools. Not yet extinct, he hides behind the spider's web and creates greatness. My hope is that his species survives!

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on June 06, 2010:

Thanks outdoorsguy for looking into that for me. I"m sure everyone else who reads the comments will appreciate that as well. :)

outdoorsguy from Tenn on June 06, 2010:

okay found out where that came from.. its based on the number of known species to have ever existed on the planet from back in the amphib days till now. learn something new every day LOL

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on June 05, 2010:

garnetbird, that is really sad about the dodo bird. I really wish I would have had a chance to see a dodo bird. I love animals, and if I didn't want to write, I would have become a zoologist and worked at a zoo or out on a safari somewhere studying animals.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on June 05, 2010:

outdoorsguy, I was actually wondering the same thing from Dallas. But figured 98 percent of statistics are made up on the spot. LOL... no, I figured there was truth in it. I was just playing. :)

My husband would so love to go out there and check for himself. It's so funny that he is fascinated by Big foot, since he is the most skeptical person in the world. Everything else he doubts, but Big foot, he's not unconvinced that it exists.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on June 05, 2010:

Dallas, That's actually a really interesting perspective. I never realized what percentage of animals are considered to be extinct. That is really fascinating. It makes sense, because if you think of all the dinosaurs, and so many others. There is so many creatures we will never even know about.

Garnetbird on June 05, 2010:

NICE work!! I did not know about the Quagga. Fascinating. The poor Dodo Bird was flightless and they hunted them down without mercy. When I taught, I had my 5th graders draw posters of it.

outdoorsguy from Tenn on June 05, 2010:

well I live in an area where people claim to have seen Bigfoot. even got paid to guide a Bigfoot hunter out for two days in early spring. the only thing Ive seen are big bear prints and a Rather tall hairy hillbilly wanting to borrow my axe. well there was ... Naw... might be a hub in that LOL.

Still a great hub. keep up the good work.

Dallas.. just a question.. but how did they reach the number 98 percent. IMO that implys knowing how many animals are or were on the planet. Just curious

Dallas W Thompson from Bakersfield, CA on June 05, 2010:

Great informative hub..!

As a former science instructor, I had learned over 98% of animals are extinct.. Not good. Not bad. Just the natural process of selection, survival of the fittest... Hopefully "us" humans will learn to adapt to mother earth and survive...

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on June 03, 2010:

Thanks Valerie, it is a problem, and hopefully people are becoming more aware of the problem, and going to prevent it from happening to more animals.

valeriebelew from Metro Atlanta, GA, USA on June 03, 2010:

This was a very informative and useful hub. As an animal lover, I am very concerned about endangered species. Thanks for writing about the problem. The pictures were also interesting. (: v

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on May 31, 2010:

LOL thehands, it's so funny you say that, my husband and I were just talking about that the other day. I wonder if the fact that the Tasmanian tigers had pouches means that they were life mates with their partners?

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on May 31, 2010:

BK Creative, I think there is a lot more talk about endangered species than there is action. Let our actions speak louder than our words. Maybe I should research ways to help out endangered species, do a hub on it, and then do some of that stuff!

Jorge Vamos on May 31, 2010:

I didn't know male Tasmanian tigers had pouches. Strange. Well, I guess if female spotted hyenas can have phalluses, it's only fair.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on May 31, 2010:

divacratus. Actually a lot of different tigers were on the list. I didn't write about them, because I couldn't find a photo that was unique enough to separate it from other tigers.

My favorite tiger of all time is the white Bengal (or Indian) tiger.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on May 31, 2010:

Pamela, I hope you are right, and I think that is what scientists are trying. Although I believe mentalistacer is right. Until we start preserving their habitat the numbers are going to continue to dwindle.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on May 31, 2010:

I agree with you mentalistacer.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on May 31, 2010:

Outdoorsguy! Really, maybe I will have to research that and do a hub on them. That makes me really curious. I did hear of a recent plant that they assumed was dead that has been rediscovered. Hmmm.... When I mentioned this to my husband he's trying to convince me that Sasquatch is real. If whole colonies of animals can be hidden from us, can't the Sasquatch. LOL.

BkCreative from Brooklyn, New York City on May 29, 2010:

What an informative hub. How sad that we keep polluting the environment, even building giant homes and forcing nature to be disturbed and unbalanced - then talk about saving creatures while we ourselves create and benefit from this toxic environment.

We need to be informed (thank you) and then act accordingly.

Thanks for this hub.

Kalpana Iyer from India on May 29, 2010:

Sad reality. Hopefully we can prevent any such further disasters from happening. I am so worried about the Indian tiger!

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on May 28, 2010:

Angela_Michelle, This hub was very interesting although sad. I think with all the new knowledge about DNA that maybe we can stop any further extinction. I hope so. Great hub.

Mentalist acer from A Voice in your Mind! on May 28, 2010:

Loss Can be eternal without preservation of important Hub angela_michelle.

outdoorsguy from Tenn on May 28, 2010:

but on a brighter note they keep finding new species too. and I know of at least three species they thought extinct only to find they had moved locales.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on May 28, 2010:

I think that's what shocks me most about the animals that are becoming extinct. It's amazing that we are still losing animals.

Ethel Smith from Kingston-Upon-Hull on May 28, 2010:

How sad. Especially that we are still losing some despite our modern knowledge. Interesting hub thanx

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on May 28, 2010:

I actually think you so are right. I believe they really are working on it. But they have to DNA samples from both a male and a female. It was sad to read about the Pyrenean ibex, I wonder if they will try to clone a second baby from it and try to cross breed with another surviving ibex until they can "create" the Pyrenean ibex.

outdoorsguy from Tenn on May 28, 2010:

great hub. ive always wondered why we dont fund a DNA foundation to recover DNA samples of animals who have become extinct over the last hundred years and clone breeding pairs and repopulate the species.

to me it would be a greater use of time for some groups than protesting. Id love it personally .

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on May 28, 2010:

Thanks Stars439! I find it very sad. I didn't realize how many have become extinct in the past 100 years, even though people are fighting for the thriving of many of these animals. There were so many, I only touched on ones that we might be familiar with!

stars439 from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State. on May 28, 2010:

Thank you for a great hub. Sad but reality of extinction. God Bless You.

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