Once great flocks of passenger pigeons, numbering in the millions, filled the skies. Over 16 inches in length with a two-foot wingspan, the bird made its home mainly in the Northern regions of the country, but it did visit North Carolina. Thomas Harriot gave the first English account of their presence in the state when he observed them on Roanoke Island during the winter of 1585-86. Moravians reported them in 1760. Early writings note the great damage caused by the flocks of birds, such as breaking trees limbs and bending others to the ground. In the late 19th-century, the passenger pigeon was the most abundant wildlife species in the world, with numbers reaching five billion. Market hunters practically wiped it out in the last two decades of the 19th-century. The last passenger pigeon in North Carolina was shot in 1894, and the last passenger pigeon in the world died in the Cincinnati Zoo on September 1, 1914.