As well as reflecting on the millions of lives lost in human conflict, this November marks the 250th anniversary of the extinction of Steller’s sea cow (Hydrodamalis gigas), a relative of the dugong, which lived in the Bering Sea and reached up to 9 metres in length. It is believed to have been hunted out of existence within just 27 years of its ‘discovery’ by Europeans in 1741.

The demise of the species – and its “great cautionary extinction tale” are the focus of this year’s Remembrance of Lost Species Day (30 November). Persephone Pearl, director of ...


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