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Re: origin of Palaeognathous Pallet



This was from an abstract from SVP (I think) a year or so ago.  If the
ostrich and emu descended (as it were) from different volant ratites,
doesn't this challenge the no-neoteny idea for ratite origins.  Or, is
there something about primitive ratites that predisposed them to dominate
the flightless niche?


HETEROCHRONY SUGGESTS MULTIPLE FLIGHT LOSS EVENTS IN THE
RATITES
MARSHALL, Cynthia L., Museum of the Rockies, Montana State
University,>Bozeman, MT, USA>Studied wing development/loss in ratite
embryos.  Finds very different>sequence in emus vs. ostriches.>Proposes
that emus and clan were small birds that became big, and that ostriches
were large fliers.