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Re: DROMORNITHIDS, GASTORNITHIDS & DUCKS



> What evidence have we that Dromornithids are carnivores? I had the
> impression that, like modern emus and cassowaries, they were predominantly
> herbivores.

Before 1997, there was no evidence for carnivory, and dromornithids were
regarded as herbivores, but then the enormous skull of *Bullockornis planei*
was discovered. See it at www.terrorvogel.de/bullockornis.html; there are
referenced the Murray & Megirian article (from which the illustration comes)
and a certain

Stephen Wroe (1999): Australiens alte Raubbeutler. Spektrum der
Wissenschaft, August 1999,

which is the German translation of

Stephen Wroe (1999): Killer Kangaroos and Other Murderous Marsupials.
Scientific American, May 1999.

BTW, *Gastornis* ( = "*Diatryma*") is now also considered to have been
carnivorous -- the skull is seriously overdesigned for herbivory, and yet it
is more gracile than that of *Bullockornis* aka "The Bird from Hell" aka
"The Demon Duck of Doom".

A Yahoo! search for Dromornithidae will also give Stephen Wroe's website.

Hope this helps!