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Staus: officially extinct Family: Dinornis
This is perhaps New Zealands best known cryptid. This large flightless bird is a relative of the kiwi and the Australian emu. It is thought to have died out about 500 years ago, although some speculate that a few stragglers may have persisted in remote corners of New Zealand until the 18th or 19th centuries. Their extinction is now attributed to hunting and forest clearance by the Polynesian ancestors of the Māori, who settled in New Zealand a few hundred years earlier. Moa were hunted by Haast's Eagle, the world's largest eagle, which is also now extinct.
Moas are unique in having no wings at all, not even small wings resiudual wings, unlike other ratites. Ten species of varying sizes are known, with the largest species, the giant moa (Dinornis robustus and Dinornis novaezelandiae), reaching nearly 4m in height and about 250 kg. They were the dominant large herbivores in the New Zealand forests.
Modern day sightings
, there are many who believe the Moa is possibly alive.
It is almost certain the Moa is extinct, there has been occasional speculation that some may still exist in deepest south Westland, a rugged wilderness in the South Island of New Zealand. Despite many expeditions no hard evidence or actual specimens have ever been found.
long neck ending in a small
head and covered in reddish feathers. The thick legs were covered to the