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Dinornis maximus
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Dinornis maximus (meaning "huge, terrible bird") was the tallest bird that ever lived. This 11 1/2 ft (3.5 m) tall moa lived in New Zealand. A flightless bird, Dinornis had long, heavily-built legs, a long neck, and a bulky body.

Diet: This slow-moving bird was an herbivore; it ate seeds and fruit. These birds swallowed stones (which went into gizzard) that helped digest the food.

When Dinornis Lived: Dinornis appeared during the Pleistocene and went extinct around 1800, due to pressures from humans.

Dinornis was named by English paleontologist Richard Owen in 1843; Owen had been sent a box of bones from a missionary in New Zealand.

Classification: Kingdom Animalia (animals), phylum Chordata, subphylum Vertebrata (vertebrates), class Aves (birds), order Dinornithiformes, family Dinornithidae, genus Dinornis, species maximus.



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