I have often wondered what the now extinct dodo bird looked like when it was still around and roaming in the wild.
Harri Kallio has tried to give us an insight into this lost-forever part of our world with his series “The Dodo and Mauritius Island”
Kallio undertook extensive research into the dodo, what it looked like, its likely habits and its habitats. He then built two life-size models of the bird and traveled to Mauritius – the only island where the dodo is known to have existed. There he set up tableaux and photographed his birds in what would have been their natural settings.
Kallio’s image bring back a world that we have destroyed. European explorers arrived in Mauritius in the 16th century. They brought with them dogs, pigs, rats and other animals that plundered the dodo’s nests. Combined with forest destruction that destroyed the bird’s habitat, the dodo became extinct within 200 years. This pattern of destruction and extinction continues today – only at a much accelerated rate. The list of threatened and endangered species continues to grow in the face of human destruction.
Harri Kallio’s work makes me wonder how many more animal models we our children have to build in the future to recreate that which we are happily destroying.