Feathery moa's fossilized footprints, ancient age revealed

Cosmogenic nuclide dating, a method commonly used in dating coastal areas and alluvial riverbeds for landscape reconstruction, is also useful for calculating the age of trace fossils, such as a footprint, where no remains ...

Risk of social media creating ambiguity in acute crises

In acute crisis situations, social media can play a crucial role in rapidly disseminating vital information. But there is also a risk that false or outdated facts are spread, causing unwarranted fear or panic. In a new study, ...

Giant moa find suggests moa were native to Rakiura

New research by the University of Otago and the Department of Conservation provides evidence that moa may have been indigenous on Rakiura / Stewart Island shortly after human arrival.

Fossilised moa poo paints a picture of the past

Knowledge of the diets of New Zealand's extinct moa (Aves: Dinornithiformes) comes from careful analysis of moa coprolites (fossilized poop) and gizzard contents. Moa coprolites and gizzard contents can be dissected and analyzed ...

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The moa were eleven species (in six genera) of flightless birds endemic to New Zealand. The two largest species, Dinornis robustus and Dinornis novaezelandiae, reached about 3.7 m (12 ft) in height with neck outstretched, and weighed about 230 kg (510 lb).

Moa are members of the ratite group in the order Dinornithiformes. The eleven species of moa are the only wingless birds, lacking even the vestigial wings which all other ratites have. They were the dominant herbivores in New Zealand's forest, shrubland and subalpine ecosystems for thousands of years, and until the arrival of the Māori were hunted only by the Haast's Eagle. It is generally considered that most, if not all, species of Moa died out by Maori hunting and habitat decline before European discovery and settlement.

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