300 pages, colour & b/w photos, colour & b/w illustrations
The moa were the most unusual and unique family of birds that ever lived, a clan of feathered monsters that developed in isolation for many, many millions of years. They became extinct reasonably quickly after the arrival of the Maori, and were a distant memory by the time European explorers arrived. So the discovery and identification of their bones in the 1840s was a worldwide sensation, claimed by many to be the zoological find of the century.
Moa: The Life and Death of New Zealand's Legendary Bird begins by recounting the story of discovery, which was characterised by an unbelievable amount of controversy and intrigue. Since then there has been an unbroken chain of new discoveries, culminating with intriguing revelations in recent years about the moa's biology, that have come to light through DNA testing and radio-dating. This is a fascinating and important book that richly recounts the life and death of our strangest bird.
Packed with a fantastic range of illustrations, Moa: The Life and Death of New Zealand's Legendary Bird fills an important gap in our natural history literature, a popular but serious book on this national icon.
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Quinn Berentson is a writer, documentary film maker and photographer. After graduating with a B.Sc. Honours from Otago University he began writing and directing children's educational television, before moving to Natural History New Zealand, where he wrote, directed and produced documentaries, working for such clients as Discovery Channel, National Geographic and Animal Planet. He continues to do this alongside other writing projects. He is based in Dunedin.