Scientists soon began to realize that the great auk was disappearing and it became the beneficiary of many early environmental laws, but this proved not to be enough. Its growing rarity increased interest from European museums and private collectors in obtaining skins and eggs of the bird. On 3 July 1844, the last two confirmed specimens were killed on Eldey, off the coast of Iceland, which also eliminated the last known breeding attempt.
The Irish name for the great auk is 'falcóg mhór'. The Basque name is arponaz, meaning "spearbill". Its early French name was apponatz. The Norse called the great auk geirfugl, which led to an alternative English common name for the bird, "garefowl"/ "gairfowl". The Inuit name for the great auk was isarukitsok. The word "penguin" first appears in the 16th century as a synonym for "great auk." It may be derived from the Welsh pen gwyn "white head", although the etymology is debated.
Great Auk | Animal Trophy - a 3D model by VECTARY | VECTARY This vegan trophy of Great Auk is a tribute to animals that went extinct because of human activity. 3D modeled in VECTARY using our plugin called Joints and Wires
On this day in 1844, the last Great Auk, a relative of puffins and razorbills, was killed on an island off the coast of Iceland. Humans hunted the Great Auk for over 100,000 years. With few natural predators, the Auk had no innate fear of people.