Pachyornis elephantopus

Elephant-footed Moa
(Pachyornis elephantopus)

syn. Dinornis elephantopus, Dinornis elephantopus var. minor, Dinornis queenslandiae, Dromiceus queenslandiae, Euryapteryx ponderosus, Pachyornis immanus, Pachyornis murihiku, Pachyornis inhabilis, Pachyornis valgus, Pounamua murihiku


New Zealand: South Island

local name: -

size: ca. 90 cm (at the back)

extinction date: ca. 1500

Remains of this species have been found on New Zealand's South Island

In live it must have been the most ponderous built of the moa species.

The photograph shows a reconstruction in the 'old way', now it is known that such an erect posture was almost impossible for the living Moa, the birds walked in a rather crouched pose with their necks held in an almost horizontal position.


Elephant-footed Moa (Pachyornis elephantopus)

Photo: Alexander Lang


- Trevor H. Worthy, Richard N. Holdaway: The Lost World of the Moa, Prehistoric Life of New Zealand. Indiana University Press, Bloomington 2002