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Martha, the last passenger pigeon, lived her entire 29-year life in the Cincinnati Zoo. Photo Credit: Cincinnati Zoo, circa 1914

From Many, to Few, to None

Once the most abundant bird in North America, the passenger pigeon was hunted to extinction in the early 1900s. The last of its kind, named Martha, died in captivity on September 1, 1914. A century later, her story serves as a somber remembrance of what our nation has lost. The passenger pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius), once numbering in the billions, was thought by some to account for one quarter of all land birds in North America. Such astonishing numbers are hard to imagine today. The birds...
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Featured Species

California condor. Credit: USFWS

Condor Watch

Biologists studying the endangered California condor have launched a new web site to enlist the help of citizen scientists in research aimed at reducing lead poisoning, the primary threat to condors in the wild.

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Photo credit: USFWS

Indiana bat

Indiana Bat

Indiana bats are found over most of the eastern half of the United States. Almost half of them hibernate in caves in southern Indiana.

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Photo credit: USFWS

Light-footed clapper rail

Light-footed Clapper Rail

The San Diego Zoo has a long history of involvement in the conservation, captive breeding, and return to the wild of light-footed clapper rails. In this interview Mike Mace talks about the efforts to recover this species

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Photo credit: USFWS

Partnership Stories

Razorback sucker spawning. Credit: USFWS

Endangered Razorback Sucker Spawning

One of the largest suckers in North America, the razorback sucker can grow to three feet in length and can live for more than 40 years. To help bolster wild populations, partners spawn and breed the endangered fish in captivity

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Last updated: August 28, 2014