palaeopedia: The giant Moa, Dinornis (= terrible bird)…



palaeopedia:

The giant Moa, Dinornis (= terrible bird) (1843)

Phylum : Chordata
Class : Aves
Superorder : Paleognathae
Order : Dinornithiformes
Family : Dinornithidae
Genus : Dinornis
Species : D. novaezealandiae, D. robustus

  • Extinct in 1500
  • 3,6 m high and 240 kg (size)
  • New Zealand (map)

Although Dinornis wasn’t the heaviest prehistoric bird that ever lived—that honor belongs to Aepyornis, or the Elephant Bird—it was definitely the tallest, with some individuals attaining 12 feet in height, about twice as tall as an adult human. Considering its size and bulk, though, Dinornis seems to have been a relatively gentle creature, subsisting entirely on vegetation, unlike its omnivorous or carnivorous giant bird cousins.

Like other giant birds of the Pleistocene epoch, Dinornis was doomed by the fact that it evolved in a relatively isolated environment (New Zealand) without any natural predators, and thus without the need to develop natural defenses. The arrival of human beings in about the 10th century AD spelled its doom, as individuals were easily hunted down (and their eggs stolen and eaten) over the ensuing centuries.

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I take comfort in the fact that All of this Will burn Some Day.

I take comfort
in the fact that
All of this
Will burn
Some
Day.