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Re: possible role of echolocation in K-T survival
In Aves, the only
>nocturnal birds ( caprimulgiforms, strigiformes, some swifts ) are
>related to each other. Caprimulgiformes ( goatsuckers, frogmouths,
>nightjars ) are nocturnal and their descendents the Strigiformes ( owls
>) are also nocturnal. However, some other descendents, swifts, only a
>few live in the dark, and their near relatives ( possible descendents )
>the hummingbirds are like all other birds. This is very strange.
There are actually more nocturnal, or at least semi nocturnal, birds than
that. Some Charadriiforms (eg some coursers (Rhinoptilus), the Galapagos
Lava Gull), and the Kakapo, a flightless New Zealand parrot, for example.
So are kiwis - perhaps their extreme reliance on smell, most unusual in
birds, is connected with this.
Also - to answer another post - the oilbird is not the only bird to
echolocate - at least some of the cave-nesting swiftlets (Collocalia) do as
Ronald I. Orenstein Phone: (905) 820-7886
International Wildlife Coalition Fax/Modem: (905) 569-0116
1825 Shady Creek Court
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