Bits and Pieces

Friday, October 15, 2004

The Wrath of Tibbles

It's Friday, so you can have this piece of information for free.

In the late 1800's, on a small atoll named Stephen's Island, New Zealand, lived a lighthouse keeper and his cat 'Tibbles'. The cat often brought to the lighthouse the bodies of unfortunate flightless birds that had been too slow to escape the claws. The lighthouse keeper, a keen naturalist, sent some specimens of the birds to various museums, where they were identified as a newly discovered species, the Stephen's Island flightless wren.

The lighthouse keeper was understandably delighted at the news. However, it appeared that in the time it took for the museums to identify the birds, Tibbles had managed to hunt down and eradicate every one of them.

The Stephen's Island flightless wren remains the only species in history to have been made extinct by a single animal. It could also be argued that loveable Tibbles is the single most evil creature to ever have walked the face of the earth.

I knew there was a reason I don't trust cats.
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