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Giant Penguins Once Roamed the Waters off New Zealand
By Joanna Lentini, December 15, 2017 @ 06:45 PM (EST)
Source: NPR


Scientists recently discovered a giant prehistoric penguin, quite similar in size to humans, that once roamed the waters around New Zealand. The penguin has been given a name from the Maori language that means 'monster bird' or Kumimanu biceae. Researchers believe the penguins weighed approximately 220 pounds and reached a height of 5 feet 10 inches! The largest penguins today are only about 4 feet in height.

The penguins likely lived between 55 and 60 million years ago, which is about 20 million years before marine mammals entered the oceans. Scientists believe the arrival of larger marine mammals could be one reason why the giant penguins went extinct.

The study was led by paleontologist Gerald Mayr from the Senckenberg Research Institute and Natural History Museum in Frankfurt, Germany. He is the lead author of the study, which was published in the journal Nature Communications.

Read more here.




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