Plant remains in coprolites: diet of a subalpine moa (Dinornithiformes) from southern New Zealand

@article{Horrocks2004PlantRI,
  title={Plant remains in coprolites: diet of a subalpine moa (Dinornithiformes) from southern New Zealand},
  author={Mark Horrocks and D. M. D'costa and Roderick Wallace and Rhys O. Gardner and Renzo Kondo},
  journal={Emu - Austral Ornithology},
  year={2004},
  volume={104},
  pages={149 - 156}
}
Abstract Analysis of plant macrofossils and pollen in putative coprolites (2538 ± 95 14C years ago) of Megalapteryx didinus, a southern subalpine species of the extinct moa, indicates that this bird browsed branchlets of forest trees (mainly Nothofagus), and grazed on tussockland and lake edge herbs (Poaceae, Cyperaceae, Isoetes). The data provide the first direct evidence of diet of an upland moa. 
First coprolite evidence for the diet of Anomalopteryx didiformis, an extinct forest ratite from New Zealand
TLDR
Pollen results, together with identified fragments of leaf cuticles from the coprolites, support the hypothesis that Anomalopteryx didiformis browsed trees and shrubs in the forest understorey. Expand
Plant microfossil analysis of coprolites of the critically endangered kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) parrot from New Zealand
TLDR
The data provide initial botanical evidence of diet from coprolites of an extant bird, and supports previous observations that kakapo are versatile feeders, using a broad spectrum of foods that may only be available for short periods and intermittent years. Expand
SHORT COMMUNICATION Pollen analysis of coprolites reveals dietary details of heavy-footed moa (Pachyornis elephantopus) and coastal moa (Euryapteryx curtus) from Central Otago
TLDR
Pollen assemblages from coprolites of the extinct heavy- footed moa and coastal moa from the Central Otago region of the South Island, New Zealand reinforce the interpretation that both species had generalist feeding ecologies. Expand
High-Resolution Coproecology: Using Coprolites to Reconstruct the Habits and Habitats of New Zealand’s Extinct Upland Moa (Megalapteryx didinus)
TLDR
The results of a multidisciplinary study of 35 coprolites from a subalpine cave on the South Island of New Zealand reveal the necessity of suitably large sample sizes in coprolite studies to overcome potential biases in diet interpretation and reflect a highly-generalist feeding ecology for upland moa. Expand
Coprolite deposits reveal the diet and ecology of the extinct New Zealand megaherbivore moa (Aves, Dinornithiformes)
Abstract The discovery in New Zealand of Late Holocene deposits of coprolites from extinct avian megaherbivores has provided a unique opportunity to gain a detailed insight into the ecology of theseExpand
Late Quaternary terrestrial vertebrate coprolites from New Zealand
Abstract Over the past decade, concerted efforts to find and study Late Quaternary terrestrial vertebrate coprolites in New Zealand have revealed new insights into the diets and ecologies of NewExpand
The diets of moa (Aves: Dinornithiformes)
TLDR
A synthesis of current knowledge about moa diets is provided, including summarising 2755 records of plant remains from 23 moa gizzard contents and 158 moa coprolites, to identify specific ecological functions and roles that have been lost due to the extinction of moa, and resolve to what extent these could be replaced via surrogate taxa. Expand
A Megafauna’s Microfauna: Gastrointestinal Parasites of New Zealand’s Extinct Moa (Aves: Dinornithiformes)
TLDR
Morphological and phylogenetic evidence supports a possible vicariant Gondwanan origin for some of the moa parasites and suggests paleoparasitological studies of megafauna coprolites may provide useful case-studies of coextinction. Expand
Resolving lost herbivore community structure using coprolites of four sympatric moa species (Aves: Dinornithiformes)
TLDR
The coprolite data are used to develop a paleoecological niche model in which moa species were partitioned based on both habitat and dietary preferences, the latter reflecting allometric relationships between body size, digestive efficiency, and nutritional requirements. Expand
Coprolites reveal ecological interactions lost with the extinction of New Zealand birds
TLDR
High-throughput sequencing of ancient eukaryotic DNA from coprolites is used to reconstruct aspects of the biology and ecology of four species of extinct moa and the critically endangered kakapo parrot from New Zealand, suggesting these birds played a role in dispersing fungi that are key to NZ's natural forest ecosystems. Expand
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