An Huge Eagle Evolves
Written by Bob Sundstrom
That is BirdNote.
[New Zealand soundscape, https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=GhoBfvPa2rc]
Evolution on remoted islands can produce uncommon — and generally unusually giant — outcomes. A number of the largest birds ever to have lived developed on the islands now often called New Zealand, together with an infinite raptor referred to as Haast’s Eagle.
With a wingspan of 9 toes and weighing as much as 30 kilos, greater than twice the mass of a Bald Eagle, this enormous predator hunted the moa — a flightless hen that stood over ten toes tall.
In evolutionary time, Haast’s Eagle bulked up shortly, from an ancestor in regards to the measurement of a Crimson-tailed Hawk. One in all its closest residing kinfolk is the Little Eagle present in Australia —the world’s smallest eagle.
[Little Eagle, ML 273379511, 0.03-.05]
With no land predators to compete with and loads of moas to prey on, Haast’s Eagle attained about ten instances the burden of its founding ancestor in simply two million years.
After the Maori [MOW-ri] folks arrived on the islands, the large birds started to go extinct. The eagles in all probability vanished not lengthy after their moa prey, about 500 to 600 years in the past.
Nonetheless, a protected website on New Zealand’s South Island referred to as the Cave of the Eagle incorporates Maori work of Haast’s Eagles. Their art work preserves the legacy of this immense raptor.
For BirdNote, I’m Ariana Remmel.
Senior Producer: John Kessler
Content material Director: Allison Wilson
Producer: Mark Bramhill
Affiliate Producer: Ellen Blackstone
Managing Producer: Conor Gearin
Bird sounds supplied by The Macaulay Library of Pure Sounds on the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York. Little Eagle ML 273379511 recorded by C. Andrews.
BirdNote’s theme was composed and performed by Nancy Rumbel and John Kessler.
© 2022 BirdNote April 2022 Narrator: Ariana Remmel
ID# HAAEAG-01-2022-04-21 HAAEAG-01