Belongs within: Falconidae. The Polyborinae includes the caracaras of South and southern North America. Caracaras are relatively long-legged falcons that often feed as scavengers. They have more or less extensive areas of bare reddish skin on the face around the base of the bill. The concerns of caracaras Published 20 May 2024 Falcons are typically… Continue reading Polyborinae


Belongs within: Psittacidae. Little green parrots Published 19 March 2024 The continent of South America is justly renowned for its parrots. The Neotropics are home to an abundance of parrot species, all of them now recognised as belonging to the subfamily Arinae. Among the most famous of the arines are their larger representatives, such as… Continue reading Brotogeris


Belongs within: Picinae. Dryocopus is a genus of medium-sized to large, predominantly black woodpeckers with a red crown found in Eurasia and the Americas. Claimants to the crown Published 22 January 2024 Woodpeckers are among the most recognisable birds of northern temperate forests. Songs have been written about them, cartoons have featured them prominently, proverbs… Continue reading Dryocopus


Belongs within: Psittaciformes.Contains: Micropsitta, Prioniturus, Eclectus, Psittacula, Alisterus, Platycercini, Psittacella, Loriinae, Agapornis, Loriculus. The Psittaculidae are a clade of brightly coloured parrots united by molecular data. The greater diversity of species are found in southern Asia and Australasia with the genus Agapornis found in Africa. The tail may be particularly long in species of the… Continue reading Psittaculidae


Belongs within: Accipitridae. Haliaeetus, the sea eagles, is a genus of large eagles found in the Old World and North America that feed predominantly on fish; species commonly have white heads, white tails and/or yellow beaks and feet. Eagles of the sea Published 28 November 2023 The bald eagle Haliaeetus leucocephalus may have a claim… Continue reading Haliaeetus


Belongs within: Ornithothoraces.Contains: Hesperornithes, Palaeognathae, Neognathae. The Ornithurae are a clade of birds including all modern species together with related fossil forms possessing a very short pygostyle and completely fused tarsometatarsus (Zhou & Zhang 2005). Basal members of this clade include the famous toothed seabirds Ichthyornis and Hesperornis from the Late Cretaceous of North America.… Continue reading Ornithurae

Categorised as Ornithurae


Belongs within: Pardirallini. Rails of the wood Published 12 September 2023 Recent years have seen a number of shifts in the classification of rails, as authors have attempted to resolve conflicts between molecular and morphology-based studies of relationships, and clarified the status of divergent insular taxa. Nevertheless, one genus of rails that has so far… Continue reading Aramides


Belongs within: Telluraves.Contains: Cacatuidae, Psittacidae, Psittaculidae. The Psittaciformes, including the parrots and their fossil relatives, are zygodactyl birds of which living species possess a robust bill specialised for breaking open seeds and nuts. Known stem parrots from the Eocene of Europe and India include the Quercypsittidae and Psittacopes lepidus. Psittacopes lepidus, from the Messel Formation… Continue reading Psittaciformes


Belongs within: Palaeognathae. The genus Struthio includes the ostrich S. camelus of Africa and its fossil relatives. The ostrich is readily distinguished from other living birds by its gigantic size and the presence of only two toes on the foot. Fossil species of Struthio are also known from Eurasia. Most authors have recognised only a… Continue reading Struthio


Belongs within: Neognathae.Contains: Rallidae, Sarothrura, Eogruidae, Gruidae. The Gruiformes, cranes, rails and their relatives, are a group of generally large-footed birds commonly associated with damp habitats. A number of families previously associated with this group, such as the Otididae (bustards), Cariamidae (cariamas), and Eurypygiformes (sunbittern and kagu), are now recognised as independent lineages within the… Continue reading Gruiformes