By Anupum Pant
Not thousands, not millions, but billions of birds in this pack flew over southern Ontario. Estimates say that the flock consisted of about 3.5 Billion passenger pigeons – which was a very big part of the whole population of passenger pigeons which existed in the world at that time. The flock was 1.5 km wide and about 500 km long and took around 14 hours to pass by. As far as you could see, there were birds in the sky, for 14 long hours!
There’s another very interesting thing concerning the population of these birds. Passenger pigeon was the most abundant bird species in North America. So much that, till very recently, these birds accounted for quarter of the whole bird population in North America. And today, there isn’t even a single passenger pigeon alive. They are extinct. Their extinction has a lot to do with the European invasion and the usage of pigeon meat to feed the poor during those times.
Martha was probably the last passenger pigeon which was alive till September 1st 1914, in the Cincinnati zoo.
more about this at [AllAboutBirds]