New Zealand's vast collection of prehistoric animal fossils has increased after a human-sized penguin was discovered.
The Canterbury Museum in Christchurch said yesterday that the fossils of a huge bird that could not fly, believed to be 1.6 meters long and weigh about 80 kilograms, were found last year in South Island.
The penguin, who lived about 56 or 66 million years ago, is in addition to the list of huge but extinct animals in New Zealand, which includes the largest parrot in the world and a huge eagle.
After an amateur paleontologist discovered penguins in 2018, a team from the Canterbury Museum and the Museum of Natural History in Frankfurt, Germany, analyzed the bones and found that they belonged to a previously unknown penguin species, crucifolia and aparensis.
The closest faction of this type of penguins is the crucifixia uninuella, who lived almost at the same time, and was identified from a fossil skeleton found in the Antarctic Cross Valley in Antarctica in 2000.
Paul Schofield, an official at the Canterbury Museum, said the finding of close-range birds in New Zealand and Antarctica shows the close connection between Wellington and the snow continent.
The weight of a huge bird, discovered last year in South Island.