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The fauna of the high rainfall west coast beech (Nothofagus) forests that included Anomalopteryx didiformis (bush moa) and Dinornis robustus (South Island giant moa); and 2.
The fauna of the dry rainshadow forest and shrublands east of the Southern Alps that included Pachyornis elephantopus (heavy-footed moa), Euryapteryx gravis, Emeus crassus and Dinornis robustus.
This does not imply that moa were previously absent from the North Island, but that only those from the South Island survived, because only the South Island was above sea level. (2009) argued that moa ancestors survived on the South Island and then recolonized the North Island about 2 My later, when the two islands rejoined after 30 My of separation. also concluded that the highly complex structure of the moa lineage was caused by the formation of the Southern Alps about 6 Mya, and the habitat fragmentation on both islands resulting from Pleistocene glacial cycles, volcanism, and landscape changes.
The two main faunas identified in the South Island include: 1.
The feature is associated with deep, resonant vocalisations that can travel long distances.
didinus (Owen) because the bones of both share all essential characters.
One factor that has caused much confusion in moa taxonomy is the intraspecific variation of bone sizes, between glacial and inter-glacial periods (see Bergmann’s rule and Allen’s rule) as well as sexual dimorphism being evident in several species.
Dinornis seems to have had the most pronounced sexual dimorphism, with females being up to 150% as tall and 280% as heavy as males—so much bigger that they were formerly classified as separate species until 2003.
The Oligocene Drowning Maximum event, which occurred about 22 Mya, when only 18% of present-day New Zealand was above sea level, is very important in the moa radiation.
Because the basal moa split occurred so recently (5.8 Mya), it was argued that ancestors of the Quaternary moa lineages could not have been present on both the South and North island remnants during the Oligocene drowning.