There is a saying, “dumb as a dodo,” to indicate that someone is basically clueless in fundamental knowledge.  It was interesting then to read, the other day, that a bunch of dodo bones had been found in one site on Mauritius.  Portuguese sailors discovered Mauritius in the 16th century and it was later colonized by the Dutch in the 17thcentury. That is when the dodo died out.

Of course, “died out” is really a euphemism.  And it wasn’t just hunted to extinction.  The settlers also destroyed its natural habitat and brought rats which ate the dodos’eggs.  Most animals have learned that not being afraid of humans is being as dumb as a dodo.  But it’s hard for them to learn to control the second order effects.

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