Although it seems that some animals are completely extinct, there are still some animals that are still alive, just living in invisible places. This is more than you think. Some animals have been deliberately wiped out or extinct by humans, but they are still alive, sometimes even as part of a large healthy population, completely unaware of their so-called extinction. This is what biologists call the Lazarus taxa. They are thought to have died and then “brought back to life” by new discoveries.
Today we are going to talk about Takahe
The takahe is also known as the notornis, but presumably only as a supervillain alter-ego. Seriously, start calling Thanos Notornis in your head; it just works. The takahe, native to New Zealand, is a flightless bird with dark, iridescent plumage that looks halfway between a raven and a peacock.
When it was first discovered in the 1800s, the bird’s numbers had been on the decline for centuries, as its preferred habitat, alpine grassland, was diminishing due to a cycle of global warming. Polynesian and European settlement was the cherry on its extinction sundae, it seemed. Only a few living specimens were ever found, and after 1898 only fossil remnants turned up. The bird was written off as extinct.
It was “extinct” for 50 years, until 1948, when it was rediscovered in an isolated mountain range. Since then, conservationists have protected and bred the species, and various populations—some as large as 400 individuals—now exist across New Zealand.