Great auks were once found in the North Atlantic, between the Arctic Circle, New England, and the British Isles.
Great auks were unable to fly.
They spent the winter primarily at sea.
During the breeding season, great auks were found in huge colonies on a small number of islands.
What kind of environment did the great auk live in?
Distribution and habitat
The great auk was found in the cold North Atlantic coastal waters along the coasts of Canada, the northeastern United States, Norway, Greenland, Iceland, the Faroe Islands, Ireland, Great Britain, France, and the Iberian Peninsula.
What happened to the great auk?
Great auks were native to the Arctic and sub-Arctic, and became extinct in 1844. On July 3, 1844, fishermen killed the last confirmed pair of great auks at Eldey Island, Iceland. The great auk, was a large flightless bird native to the North Atlantic. For centuries, the penguin-like birds were popular as meat and bait.
Why did the great auk become extinct?
Around 1800, the species was under serious threat because of excessive hunting. But it was mainly sailors who hunted them on their long fishing trips in these regions. The bird was large, meaty and easy prey, as it could not fly. The great auk was also hunted for its feathers which were used in the clothing industry.
Where is Auk found?
They have short wings and legs and webbed feet. Limited in distribution to Arctic, subarctic, and north temperate regions (with a few species south to Baja California), they nest colonially on ledges of cliffs and in rock crevices or burrows adjacent to the sea, and many spend the stormy winter months far from land.