This book investigates one of the richest and most unusual faunas in the world, one that thrived in isolation for 80 million years, but that over the prit two millennia has been reduced to a shadow of its former glory. It was a fauna dominated by birds. In one of the most dramatic extinctions of modem tunes, half of these species were removed from the planet forever. Among these lost animals were the giant birds known as moa, an evolutionary novelty that included one of the largest birds ever known. In this definitive volume, Trevor H Worthy and Richard N Holdaway summarize all that is presently known about these incredible birds. The authors present the various species of moa, describe their skeletons, and reconstruct their life and ecology. Theirs is the most complete account of the moa anywhere. In addition, they describe the only threat to the survival of an adult moa, an eagle of enormous size. Paying particular attention to the more interesting and unique forms known only or largely from the fossil record, Worthy and Holdaway describe the primary herbivores, other species. These are placed in the context of the total fauna, where ducks, gruids, and even bats all followed an evolutizonaty path to flightlessness. Wonderful as these species were, most were ill-prepared to face new, mammalian predators-first rats brought by human visitors, then permanent human settlers and widespread mammal introductions. Copiously illustrated and carefully documented from the most current scientific research, The Lost World of the Moa reconstructs a fascinating evolutionary experiment that survived all manner of climatic and geological change, only to succumb to contact with the outside world.