Dead as a dodo: new evidence from bones

In this activity children consider evidence from bones and contemporaneous drawings to make their own decisions.

Description

Dutch and Mauritian scientists made an exciting discovery - beautifully preserved, 2000 year old Dodo bones from about twenty of the extinct birds. The scientists are using evidence from the bones, as well as DNA analysis techniques, to discover more about the life and death of the Dodo. They now believe that Dodos were not as fat, or stupid, as was once thought and were probably well adapted to their environment. Only the arrival of Dutch settlers to Mauritius, and the animals they introduced, led to the Dodo's eventual extinction.  

Children consider evidence from bones and contemporaneous drawings to make their own decisions: were Dodos well adapted to their habitat?  Why did they become extinct?

Learning Objective:

-    That bones can provide evidence about the lives and adaptations of an extinct species

Children will learn:

-    That many extinctions happen because of human activity

 

Primary upd8
Acknowledgements

These resources were initially developed in partnership with the Centre for Science Education, Sheffield Hallam University.