Martinborough’s Cave of Bones

How thousands of flightless birds met their end

Fossilised bird grave sites are common in New Zealand, but one particular cave in Martinborough has revealed thousands of bones of flightless birds who plunged to their deaths.

Curator of vertebrates Alan Tennyson describes how over thousands of years rare and extinct birds such kakapo, kiwi, North Island takahe, and moa fell through the concealed entrance.

Alan says “It might not look like a spectacular cave but this site has become the richest site in the whole of New Zealand for some species including the nearly one metre tall extinct adzebill.”

Photo above:  ⇡  Extinct adzebill skulls. Photo by Rachael Hockridge. Te Papa

Photo above:  ⇣ Curator Alan Tennyson holds an adzebill skull next to a painting of the extinct bird on his book ‘Extinct Birds of New Zealand’, published 2007. Te Papa

To read more of the blog go to TE PAPA'S BLOG

Karina Hailwood
Creative Director
Martinborough Village 
Guest writer: Te Papa
"Let us show you the magic of our region" 
enquiries to karina@coolc.co.nz
Copyright MV 2017


This product has been added to your cart