The Moa

Moa were large, flightless birds that lived in New Zealand until about 500 years ago. There were 10 species of these extinct birds. They belong to the ratite group of birds, in the order Dinornithiformes, which also includes ostriches, emus and kiwi. Moa were hunted to extinction by Māori, who found them easy targets. Their… Continue reading The Moa

Giant Moa wasn’t so robust

As reported in the NZHerald – 22nd December 2013 The South Island Giant Moa wasn’t quite as hefty as we had thought. A new study has found its bones were more slender than first believed, which has resulted in a recalculation of the birds’ size. Instead of studying just the birds’ leg bones to determine… Continue reading Giant Moa wasn’t so robust

Maori legend of man-eating bird is true

Creature that features in New Zealand folklore really existed, scientists say By Paul Rodgers A Maori legend about a giant, man-eating bird has been confirmed by scientists. Te Hokioi was a huge black-and-white predator with a red crest and yellow-green tinged wingtips, in an account given to Sir George Gray, an early governor of New… Continue reading Maori legend of man-eating bird is true

Scientists ‘rebuild’ giant moa using ancient DNA

(PhysOrg.com) — Scientists have performed the first DNA-based reconstruction of the giant extinct moa bird, using prehistoric feathers recovered from caves and rock shelters in New Zealand. Researchers from the University of Adelaide and Landcare Research in New Zealand have identified four different moa species after retrieving ancient DNA from moa feathers believed to be… Continue reading Scientists ‘rebuild’ giant moa using ancient DNA