The Press: Moa DNA gives up some secrets

Paul Gorman reports in The Press on the first successful isolation of DNA from ancient eggshell fossils by an international team including researchers from the University of Otago.

The eggshell fragments include those from moa, and it is hoped they will enable reserachers to better understand the history, and demise, of the birds.

An excerpt: (read in full here)

Co-authors include Otago University archaeologists Chris Jacomb and Richard Walter and Canterbury University palaeobiologist Richard Holdaway.

“…It means we can study moa at a population level rather than as a regional presence, and it can tell us things about where the moa being hunted and laying eggs were living, so we can tell if they were in valley floors or hilltops, [said Jacomb].””