Eggshell characteristics of moa eggs (Aves: Dinornithiformes)

  title={Eggshell characteristics of moa eggs (Aves: Dinornithiformes)},
  author={B. J. Gill},
  journal={Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand},
  pages={139 - 150}
  • B. Gill
  • Published 1 December 2007
  • Biology
  • Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand
Abstract Museums hold 36 whole moa eggs (Aves: Dinornithiformes) spanning a large size‐range (120–240 mm long and 91–178 mm wide) and with a strong positive correlation (r=0.92) between length (L) and width (W). The degree of elongation (L/W) varies greatly (1.25–1.57), as in elephant bird eggs (Aepyornithidae). The verified upper limit of moa eggshell thickness is extended to 1.89 mm, which overlaps the thickness of ostrich eggs. The largest moa egg had a shell‐thickness of only 1.2–1.3 mm… Expand
Regional comparisons of the thickness of moa eggshell fragments (Aves: Dinornithiformes). In Proceedings of the VII International Meeting of the Society of Avian Paleontology and Evolution, ed. W.E. Boles and T.H. Worthy
The study demonstrates the usefulness of eggshell-thickness histograms at particular sites as an adjunct to, or surrogate for, information on the relative abundance of moa bones, especially for North Island sites. Expand
Molecular and morphological analyses of avian eggshell excavated from a late thirteenth century earth oven
This study demonstrates how aDNA can also add to the knowledge of eggshell in both archaeological and palaeoecological contexts by demonstrating through the genetic identification of 127 moa eggshell fragments that thickness is an unreliable character for species assignment. Expand
Fossil avian eggs from the Palaeogene of southern France: new size estimates and a possible taxonomic identification of the egg-layer
The original size of the thick-shelled eggs from the Palaeogene of southern France is reconstructed, showing that they were slightly larger than ostrich eggs, with a greatest length of 17.8 cm and a mean diameter of 12.0 cm, which are among the largest known avian eggs. Expand
Explaining the lack of emu eggshell material culture in Australia: Experimental working and archaeological implications
Abstract Ostrich eggshell (OES) disc beads are among the earliest types of personal adornment produced by Modern Human populations in African and Asia, and represent the first example of a rawExpand
Ancient DNA reveals extreme egg morphology and nesting behavior in New Zealand’s extinct moa
New Zealand's extinct flightless moa radiated rapidly into a large number of morphologically diverse species, which produced an equally large range of egg morphologies, and sex-specific DNA recovered from the outer surfaces of eggshells belonging to species of Dinornis and Euryapteryx suggest that these very thin eggs were likely to have been incubated by the lighter males. Expand
Moa (Aves: Dinornithiformes) nesting material from rockshelters in the semi‐arid interior of South Island, New Zealand
Abstract The first descriptions of plant remains from the nests of extinct moa (Aves: Dinornithiformes) are presented. The samples of desiccated nesting material were collected during excavation ofExpand
Twenty-first century advances in knowledge of the biology of moa (Aves: Dinornithiformes): a new morphological analysis and moa diagnoses revised
A phylogenetic analysis based on morphological characters using a broader range of taxa and many more characters than hitherto used in moa analyses resulted in several strongly supported relationships, including monophyletic and sister to aepyornithids in the unconstrained analysis. Expand
Reproductive investment in moa: a K-selected life-history strategy?
The approach presented herein, illustrates that combining biological and paleontological data can assist in the reconstruction of species traits, which are insufficiently or not preserved in fossils, but are necessary to understand the evolution of traits. Expand
Egg Incubation Mechanics of Giant Birds
  • An Yen, Hsiao-Jou Wu, Pin-Yi Chen, Hon-Tsen Yu, J. Juang
  • Medicine
  • Biology
  • 2021
Finite element analysis was used to conduct mechanical analyses on eggshells of giant birds, and it is found that RSSD in moas significantly increases the safety margin of contact incubation by the lighter males, however, their safety margins are still smaller than those of the moa species without RSSD. Expand
Moa’s Ark: Miocene fossils reveal the great antiquity of moa (Aves: Dinornithiformes) in Zealandia. In Proceedings of the VII International Meeting of the Society of Avian Paleontology and Evolution, ed. W.E. Boles and T.H. Worthy
It is concluded that moa have a long history in Zealandia, almost certainly extending to before the Oligocene "drowning", consistent with biotic evidence from other sources, which indicates a great antiquity of several Zealandian animals and plants. Expand


There are 36 moa eggs whole enough, or suffi ciently reconstructed, to permit accurate measurement of size (length or width), and only two eggs have reliable identities from unambiguous association with an identifi ed skeleton. Expand
Morphometrics of moa eggshell fragments (Aves: Dinornithiformes) from Late Holocene dune‐sands of the Karikari Peninsula, New Zealand
Moa eggshell fragments were examined from Late Holocene coastal dunes at Tokerau Beach and Matai Bay, Kankan Peninsula, Northland The Tokerau eggshell fragments, 0 56–1 69 mm thick, were produced byExpand
It is suggested that embryos of late-laid eggs may be able to develop faster than embryos of early-lays eggs because of a greater capacity for gas exchange because of the evolutionary advantages of seasonal declines in incubation periods. Expand
Extreme reversed sexual size dimorphism in the extinct New Zealand moa Dinornis
It is shown, using the first sex-linked nuclear sequences from an extinct species, that on each island the three morphological forms actually represent just one species, whose size varied markedly according to sex and habitat. Expand
Dinornis - An insular oddity, a taxonomic conundrum reviewed
The new genetics-derived hypothesis of one species per island where the size variation seen in the morphometric data is due to reversed sexual dimorphism is assessed. Expand
Genyornis eggshell (Dromornithidae; Aves) from the Late Pleistocene of South Australia
Fossil eggshell fragments from a sand dune near Port Augusta are attributed to the extinct dromornithid, Genyornis newtoni Stirling & Zietz. Shell curvature measurements show that the eggs wereExpand
Rediscovery of the types of Dinornis curtus Owen and Palapteryx geranoides Owen, with a new synonymy (Aves: Dinornithiformes)
A left tibiotarsus BMNH A5906, carrying the original Royal College of Surgeons number 2305, is identified as the lectotype (nominated by Lydekker in his 1891 catalogue) of Dinornis curtus Owen, 1846. Expand
Preferred orientation of calcite in the ratite and tinamou eggshells
The degree of (001) texture that develops in the ratite and tinamou shells is greater than that developed in the other carinate orders, and in some species this is accompanied by the development of a very weak (104) preferred orientation. Expand
The Lost World of the Moa: Prehistoric Life of New Zealand
Preliminary Table of Contents - Introduction - The Land that Time Forgot The Early Record The Unveiling The Discovery of Moa Moa Anatomy and Evolution The Living Moa Kiwi Waterbirds of All Kinds TheExpand
Memoirs on the Extinct Wingless Birds of New Zealand, with an Appendix on those of England, Australia, Newfoundland, Mauritius, and Rodriguez
With an introduction to the digital reproduction of this work by Timothy Rowe, Jackson School of Geosciences, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas 78712