Sporadic Musings about Birds and Birding on both Sides of the Atlantic
I didn't realize today was such an important anniversary.
Oh, that's depressing. Horrible.
The thing that makes the extinction of the Great Auk so tragic is the fact that it didn't just disappear because of "general" reasons, e.g. habitat destruction or accidentally introduced mammalian predators to its breeding islands. The last birds were actually killed deliberately, for collections or through sheer stupidity. I mean, a witch? Please!!!Very, very simple actions could have easily prevented its demise but nothing was done.Humanity at its best.
Truly depressing, indeed. Even worse, we've learned nothing from mistakes and nothing from stupidity. At times, I despair.
I'd like to think that as individuals, we learn from past mistakes. I'm not so sure about the ability of populations to improve themselves.
Wren, I suppose the key question is the assessment of what actions are deemed as mistakes by those who undertake them.I am not sure those who strangled the last Auks thought that this had been a mistake - they sure made some fine money selling the corpses. They probably said (or thought) that they'd do it again - anytime, anywhere, any bird.
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