How many of you have heard about the Atlas bear? If your answer is no then you are right. The unfortunate Atlas bear is no more. It was a species of bear that was native to Africa and made its home around the Atlas Mountains. Its demise can be traced back to the Roman Empire.
At that time animals were not just hunted for sport but they were also captured and brought back to Rome. There they were expected to do battle with gladiators and do way with criminals in a fearsome spectacle known as damnatio ad bestias. More and more Atlas bears were destroyed all through the Middle Ages due to large areas of forest being cut out for timber in northern Africa. Sometime in the mid-1800s the last surviving wild Atlas bear was shot and killed.