New material of Barawertornis tedfordi, a dromornithid bird from the Oligo-Miocene of Australia, and its phylogenetic implications

Jacqueline M.T. Nguyen, Walter E. Boles, Suzanne J. Hand

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

New fossil material of Barawertornis tedfordi (Aves: Dromornithidae) is described from Oligo-Miocene deposits in the Riversleigh World Heritage Area, northwestern Queensland, Australia. Phylogenetic analysis incorporating data from this new material casts some doubt on the generally accepted sister group relationship between B. tedfordi and all other dromornithids. However, the phylogenetic analysis is congruent with current hypotheses regarding intergeneric relationships among the other dromornithid taxa. A formal revision of dromornithid nomenclature that reflects these relationships is presented here. Barawertornis tedfordi may have closely resembled the unrelated Southern Cassowary Casuarius casuarius (Aves: Casuariidae), in that it was a rainforest-dwelling, flightless bird of similar size. Barawertornis tedfordi also appears to have had similar cursorial abilities to C. casuarius, based on its hind limb proportions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45–60
Number of pages16
JournalRecords of the Australian Museum
Volume62
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 26 May 2010
Externally publishedYes

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