1. The phrase “dead as the dodo” was first recorded in 1904, though the dodo went extinct in the 1660s.
2. “Extinct as the dodo,” dates back to 1870; “dead as a doornail” was used earlier.
3. There have been five known mass extinctions on Earth, each of which killed off at least half the species alive at the time.
4. The Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction around 65 million years ago killed off the dinosaurs. Click here to read more
5. The woolly mammoth, giant kangaroo and giant sloth died out between 45,000 and 10,000 years ago.
6. The Glyptodon, an armadillo the size of a car, also became extinct about 10,000 years ago.
7. In 1883 the quagga became extinct. In 1984, it became the first extinct animal to have its DNA sequenced.
8. The Californian state flag features the last known captive Californian grizzly bear. The bear, named Monarch, died in 1911. The species became extinct in 1924.
9. The last passenger pigeon died in 1914. She was named Martha, after George Washington’s wife.
10. The World Wildlife Fund estimates that 10,000 species or sub-species go extinct every year.
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