Cariamiformes

Belongs within: Telluraves.Contains: Phorusrhacidae. The Cariamiformes contain the modern Cariamidae (seriemas), long-legged primarily carnivorous birds, and related fossil taxa. Two living species are found in South America from central Brazil to northern Argentina, with the crested seriema Cariama cristata found in open pampas and Burmeister’s seriema Chunga burmeisteri in sparse forest. Cariamiformes were more diverse… Continue reading Cariamiformes

Phorusrhacidae

Belongs within: Cariamiformes. The Phorusrhacidae include the ‘terror birds’ of South America, flightless carnivorous birds that lived from the mid-Palaeocene to the Upper Pliocene/Lower Pleistocene. The latest surviving species, Titanis walleri, is also notable for being found in southern North America. Some phorusrhacids reached significant sizes, with heights comparable to a human; other species were… Continue reading Phorusrhacidae