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MOA EAGLES ATE
Greg Paul asked about the moa-eating habits of New Zealand's giant
eagle _Harpagornis_ (AKA Haast's eagle). Here is the addendum to my
previous email on this subject.
Dug out an old email from Richard Holdaway. Specifically, the moa
species that seem to have been preyed upon by _Harpagornis_ are
_Emeus crassus_, _Pachyornis elephantopus_ and __Euryapteryx
geranoides_. Like I said before, Holdaway also has a _Dinornis
giganteus_ specimen which bears signs of _Harpagornis_ attack.
Incidentally, though I suggested previously that the eagle may have
preyed upon the two SMALLER _Pachyornis_ species, _P. elephantopus_
is actually the biggest of the three - at an estimated mass of 250
kg, it's the heaviest of all the moa (presuming, that is, that
current moa mass estimates are correct and not inflated - Greg, have
you done modelling work on these birds?).
Finally, note that Holdaway proposed a specific mode of attack
style (or rather, a typical accipitrid mode of attack) for
_Harpagornis_: one foot would secure the rump, while the other would
strike the base of the neck. Previously published restorations of
_Harpagornis_ striking at moa heads are not presently thought to be
"Assault weapons have gotten a lot of bad press lately, but they're
weapons manufactured for a _reason_: to take out today's modern
*SUPER* animals, such as the 'flying squirrel.... and the 'electric