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RE: The Incredible Shrinking New Papers

"Gheerbrant, E., and Rage, J.-C. 2006.
Paleobiogeography of Africa: how 
distinct from Gondwana and Laurasia? Palaeogeography,
Palaeoecology 241(2):224-246. doi:

There was apparently lots of birds dispersing via a
counterclockwise route from Australasia via SE Asia,
India, the Seychelles plateau to Africa in the late
Paleogene to early-mid(?) Miocene. (Much of the
Mascarenes avifauna did, including the dodo)

Of course, being able to fly makes a difference ;-)

"Poinar, G., Jr., Voisin, C., and Voisin, J.-F. 2007.
Bird eggshell in 
Dominican amber. doi:10.1111/j.1475-4983.2007.00713.x.
If indeed a hummingbird was 
involved, this discovery would represent the first New
World record of
fossil trochilid."

I think no, there are some Pleistocene bones (of
extant and recently extinct taxa) from the Bahamas and
some older u/i fragments of (probably) a prehistoric
taxon from N(?) Brazil cave deposits.



PS: For all the rarity and delicateness of their
bones, the trochilids allow for a quite consistent
evolutionary and phylogenetic hypothesis by now. But
still, nobody knows when and why the little white dot
behind the eye of most trochilines did evolve
(phaetornithines almost all have a light superciliary
which extends to the region in question, as have
almost all treeswifts but only a very few swifts and
no - I think - swiftlets at all).

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