Schlagwort-Archive: Early Oligocene

Winnicavis gorskii Bocheński, Tomek, Wertz, Happ, Bujoczek & Świdnicka

This is the “newest” of the European Oligocene birds with “brittly limbs”, this time only the wingbones are preserved. These are unlike the wingbones of any other passerine bird known so far, extant or extinct.

The bird was small, about the size of a Great Tit (Parus major L.), I will see if I am able to make some kind of reconstruction, whatsoever. [1]

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References:

[1] Zbigniew M. Bocheński, Teresa Tomek, Krzysztof Wertz, Johannes Happ, Małgorzata Bujoczek & Ewa Świdnicka: Articulated avian remains from the early Oligocene of Poland adds to our understanding of Passerine evolution. Palaeontologia Electronica 21(2). 2018

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Let’s have a little update here.

I’ve made a little sketch, based on a Great Tit, however, knowing that this bird was not related to any of the modern Passeriformes, I thought of a little songbird-like creature resembling some of the Australian/Papuan “primitive” songbirds.

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my reconstruction, the bird reached a size of about 15 cm or in other words was indeed about the size of a Great Tit; remember, only the wing bones and some impressions of several wing feathers are known

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edited: 06.04.2020

Palaeotodus emryi Olson

This is just a doodle, or sketch of a Palaeotodus emryi, a rather large tody ancestor from the Early Oligocene of Wyoming, USA.    

This fossil tody was nearly 50% larger, and probably had a somewhat shorter bill and larger wings than the recent species.  

Today, todies are restricted to the Caribbean, where five species, which all more or less look the same, are found on Cuba, on Hispaniola as well as on Jamaica and Puerto Rico.  

It is very strange to see how little these birds have changed during the last 30 Ma. years of their known existence!

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edited: 22.05.2018

Parvigrus pohli Mayr

This not so crane-like little birdie once inhabited in the Early Oligocene, from about 32,5 to 29,5 Ma. years ago, what today is Belgium and France and certainly other parts of Europe as well.

The species reached the size of a smaller chicken, or let’s say of about 35 cm in length in my reconstruction.

The family it belongs to is thought to be most closely related to the limpkins (Aramidae), the cranes (Gruidae) and the trumpeters (Psophidae), and indeed, my reconstruction appears to show a bird that is something in between all of these three families.  

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References:

[1] Gerald Mayr: A chicken-sized precursoor from the early Oligocene of France. Naturwissenschaften 92:389-393. 2005
[2] Gerald Mayr: Parvigruidae (Aves, core Gruiformes) from the early Oligocene of Belgium. Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments 93(1): 77-89. 2012

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edited: 20.05.2018

A suboscine bird from France

I have talked about the European Oligocene epoch and its birds with brittly limbs before.  

Here’s another such brittle-limbed bird from the early Oligocene of Europe, this one has lost its wings, or at least one wing, literally … it is known from parts of the right wing.  

The most interesting fact in this case is, the bird belonged to a group of birds that are part of the Passeriformes but aren’t songbirds, these are called suboscine birds.  

The whole group of suboscine birds is now restricted to, well, it’s actually occurring worldwide, especially in South America, but it is not found in Europe today.  

The bird appears to have been of similar size to the Sunbird Asities (Neodrepanis spp.), which today inhabit the island of Madagascar (… these are suboscine birds as well, by the way).    

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I made this little drawing of this nameless creature bearing a Neodrepanis sp. in mind, but without specialized features like an elongated beak for nectar-feeding etc..  

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References:

[1] Gerald Mayr; Albrecht Manegold: A Small Suboscine-like Passeriform Bird from the Early Oligocene of France / Una Pequeña Ave Paseriforme Tipo Suboscine del Oligoceno Temprano de Francia. The Condor 108(3): 717-720. 2006

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edited: 19.07.2017

A small bird with a ‘large’ name: take 2

Rupelramphastoides knopfi Mayr  

Well, the head appears to have also been found, yet in another specimen, so here’s the reconstruction after measuring the skull.:

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It does not really differ that much from the previous version.: 

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References:

[1] Gerald Mayr: A tiny barbet-like bird from the Lower Oligocene of Germany: the smallest species and earliest substantial fossil record of the Pici (woodpeckers and allies). The Auk 122(4): 1-9. 2005 
[2] Gerald Mayr: Avian Evolution: The Fossil Record of Birds and its Paleobiological Significance. Wiley-Blackwell 2016

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edited: 18.07.2017

ISEA AF/JAM1

It seems that the Oligocene epoch in Europe produced a lot of birds with brittly legs, since this nameless thing (ISEA AF/JAM1 is the ‘name’ given to the bones) is the next bird known only from a single leg (the twig-like thing between the drawing and the pen).

It appears to have been related to the Apodiformes or the Upupiformes, and according to my reconstruction may have reached a length of only about 6 cm.

Gosh, I need to use colors again at last!!!

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source:

>Zbigniew M. Bochenski; Teresa Tomek; Ewa Swidnicka: A tiny short-legged bird from the early Oligocene of Poland. Geologica Carpathica 67(5): 463-469. 2016

A small bird with a ‘large’ name

If my reconstruction sketch is reliable, this bird must have reached a length of some 10 to 11 cm, this is in fact quite small.  

The head, however, is not known so far.

This time I decided to made a photo of my drawing rather than a scan since my scanner is a dumbass that makes me angry.

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References:

[1] Gerald Mayr: A tiny barbet-like bird from the Lower Oligocene of Germany: the smallest species and earliest substantial fossil record of the Pici (woodpeckers and allies). The Auk 122(4): 1-9. 2005

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edited: 16.06.2016

An Early Oligocene hoopoe-relative

This species obviously was described as Bystreornis brevimetatarsis, however, I have no idea in which paper (not the one mentioned below), and by whom.

Anyway, the bird is so far known from a single leg only, which whose structure indicates that it the bird belonged to the hoopoe family, and which otherwise proves it to have been an exceptional small creature.

This is just a sketch, and I depicted the bird twice the actual size, it may in fact have reached only some 6 cm!

… maybe I got the tarsometatarsus too long?

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References:

[1] Martin Kundrát; Ján Soták; Per E. Ahlberg: A putative upupiform bird from the Early Oligocene of the Central Western Carpathians and a review of fossil birds unearthed in Slovakia. Acta Zoologica 96(4): 45-59. 2015

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edited: 09.06.2016