Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Interesting Facts #8

The Canary Islands are named after dogs, not birds.

When the Romans first visisted the group of islands that make up the Canary Islands, they found an endemic species of large, fierce dog in great numbers. They named the main island Insularia Canaria, meaning Island of the Dogs. The Romans took some of the local dogs and the local birds back with them to Rome. The dogs did not do well and have since died out in the islands. The birds flourished and became known as canaries.

Dogs are still featured on the coat of arms of the Canary Islands.

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