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Re: DROMORNITHIDS, GASTORNITHIDS & DUCKS



> > I miss something here... the mihirung (Dromornithidae), giant
> > flightless birds of Eocene -- Pleistocene Australia, which were just
> > found out to be _carnivorous ducks_, with enormous beaks much
> > like *Gastornis* ("*Diatryma*")
>
> My text was only about ducks. Dromornithids might be anseriforms
> but, AFAIK, there is no evidence that they are actually members of
> the Anatidae. Similarly, nobody (to my knowledge) has proposed that
> gastornithids are anatids [note: there's stuff in the archives about a
> possible gastornithid-anhimind link].

Oh, yeah, true, dromornithids are anseriforms, but not anatids -- I have
wrongly remembered the anseriform cladogram in -- mercy -- Feduccia's 1996
book which I thought showed ducks spread all over it. There have been
proposals that gastornithids are anseriforms instead of "gruiforms"; while I
can't comment on that, I've found a ref for anseriform dromornithids
somewhere on the web :-] (Yahoo search for Dromornithidae). However, at
least *Bullockornis* has been called "The Demon Duck of Doom" (forgot the
ref for that; New Scientist?)
        I'll read the archives anyway. Just arrived at May 1994 :-)

> On the duck poem thing, David Marjanovik wrote..

Marjanovic, with an acute on the c which I can cut & paste into HTML mails,
but most e-mail readers can't read it... pronounced between ts and ch. :-)