The fossil rails (Aves: Rallidae) of Fiji with descriptions of a new genus and species

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Abstract

A new genus and species of Gallirallus‐like flightless extinct rail is described from deposits in western Viti Levu, Fiji, south‐west Pacific. It is distinguished by having a longer, more decurved bill, than all other rails. Fossils of the barred‐wing rail Nesoclopeus poicilopterus (Hautlaub, 1866) are reported from eastern parts of Viti Levu and several fossil bones suggest the former presence of a probable gallinule. A total of seven rails in seven genera were, therefore, sympatric on Viti Levu in the immediate prehuman period.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)295-314
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of the Royal Society of New Zealand
Volume34
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Fiji
  • Late Quaternary fossils
  • New genus
  • New species
  • Rails
  • Rallidae

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