This documentary tells the story of the mighty moa, and asks if it really is extinct. The giant, flightless bird could stretch up to three metres tall, and weighed up to 275 kilograms. In the 19th century the bird was rediscovered by English naturalist Richard Owen, who concluded from bone evidence that the moa existed (leading to ‘moa mania' bone trade). Also covered is the ignition of hope that moa may still be alive after takahē (thought to be as dead as the dodo) were discovered in Fiordland in 1948, and the digging up bird skeletons and remains of moa hunter culture in South Island swamps.
Scientists, much as they would like to make out that they are always coolly objective, have as much imagination as anyone else ... harnessing that scientific imagination into productive directions is what research is all about.– Sandy Bartle, ex Curator of Birds at museum Te Papa
Made with funding from NZ On Air