Definition of moa in English:


Syllabification: mo·a
Pronunciation: /ˈmōə


  • A large, extinct, flightless bird resembling the emu, formerly found in New Zealand.
    • Family Dinornithidae: several genera and species; Dinornis maximus was the tallest known bird, with a height of about 10 feet (3 m), but Megalapteryx didinus, which may have survived until the early 19th century, was much smaller
    More example sentences
    • Ostriches, emus, cassowaries, rheas, kiwis, moas and elephant birds really are more closely related to each other than they are to any other birds.
    • Other ratites, the elephant bird of Madagascar and the moas of New Zealand, have been extinct for several centuries, probably as a result of human hunting.
    • Owen also identified New Zealand's giant flightless bird, the moa or dinornis, from a piece of shin just 15 cm long.


mid 19th century: from Maori.

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