Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Categories Updated

NOTE that I am now working with a simplified version of all this. This is for documentation of a more complicated hypothesis:
Here is the list of updated categories (proposed lineages). This is a work in progress.
(Click the links to view details).



  • Landbirds (General)
    • Pterosaur (eg. Dsungaripteroidea)  eg. Nemicolopterus -->
    • Enantiornithes/Confuciusornithids landbird subgroups -->
    • Modern landbird groups  (eg. Passerines, Falconiformes etc)
  • Landbirds (Owl)
    • Pterosaur (eg. Dsungaripteroidea)  eg. Nemicolopterus -->
    • Enantiornithes/Confuciusornithids landbird subgroup -->
    • Primitive owls, (eg. Sophiornithidae?--> 
    • Strigiformes (eg. owls), Caprimulgiformes (eg. nighthawks)
  • Landfowl
    • Pterosaur (eg.  Dsungaripteroidea)  eg. Nemicolopterus -->
    • Enantiornithes/Confuciusornithids landbird subgroup -->
    • Modern "Galliformes"(eg. Chicken, Turkey, Pheasant, Quail) and Tinamiformes (Tinamou)

  • Waterfowl (Presbyornithid line)
    • Pterosaur (eg. Ctenochasmatidae ) --->
    • Presbyornithid subgroup--> 
    • Modern Anseriformes (eg. Duck, Geese , Swan)
    • Pterosaur (eg.  Ctenochasmatidae) eg. Pterodaustro   -->
    • Presbyornithid subgroup--> 
    • Primitive bird, Palaelodidae (Phoenicopteriformes)  --> 
    • Flamingo (Phoenicopteriformes)
  • Aquatic birds (Hesperornithes line)
    • Pterosaur (eg.  Ctenochasmatidae)    eg. Pterodactylus --> 
    • Baptornithidae  (Hesperornithes) --> 
    • (primarily foot-propelled) WEB FOOT diving bird orders, eg. Cormorants (Phalacrocoracidae), Loons (Gaviidae),  Penguins  (Sphenisciformes)
    • Pterosaur (eg.  Ctenochasmatidae)    eg. Pterodactylus -->
    • Hesperornithidae (Hesperornithes) --> 
    • (primarily foot-propelled) LOBE FOOT diving bird orders eg. Grebes (Podicipedidae).
  • Seabirds (Ichthyornithes line)
    • Pterosaur (eg. Ornithocheiroideaeg. PteranodonAnhanguera -> 
    • An Ichthyornithes subgroup --> 
    • Gulls, Skimmers (Charadriiformes/Lari)
    • Pterosaur (eg. Ornithocheiroidea ) eg. Pteranodon Anhanguera -> 
    • An Ichthyornithes subgroup --> 
    • Petrels, Albatross (Procellariiformes)

  • Waders/shorebirds
    • Pterosaur (eg. Azhdarchoidea) --->
    • Primitive shorebird (eg. Graculavus) --> 
    • Modern shorebirds - eg. plovers, oystercatchers, sandpipers (Charadriiformes/Charadrii) and storks (Ciconiidae)

  • Flightless birds
    • Pterosaur -->
    • Primitive flying birds? -->
    • Modern (flightless) ratites - Ostrich (Struthio), Rhea (Rheidae), Cassowary, Emu (Casuariidae), Kiwi (Apteryx) 

For reference:

Cladogram showing the most recent classification of Neoaves, based on several phylogenetic studies.

The Cretaceous saw the rise of more modern birds with a more rigid ribcage with a carina and shoulders able to allow for a powerful upstroke, essential to sustained powered flight. They also had a more derived pygostyle, with a ploughshare-shaped end. An early example is Yanornis. Many were coastal birds, strikingly resembling modern shorebirds, like Ichthyornis, or ducks, like Gansus. Some evolved as swimming hunters, like the Hesperornithiformes – a group of flightless divers resembling grebes and loons. While modern in most respects, most of these birds retained typical reptilian-like teeth and sharp claws on the manus.

Gansus was described as the oldest known ornithuran. The Ornithurae, however, has been given several very different definitions. In the definition used by You and colleagues (that is, the clade containing all living birds plus Hesperornis and Ichthyornis), Gansus is indeed the oldest known member. However, several birds from the older Yixian Formation and contemporary Jiufotang Formation are considered ornithurans under other definitions. Under any definition, all living birds, including taxa as diverse as ostriches, hummingbirdsand eagles, are descended from basal ornithurans, many of which were semi-aquatic. It is now thought possible that all modern birds descended specifically from a semi-aquatic bird similar to Gansus. Thus, while Gansus is not necessarily a direct ancestor of today's birds, it is closely related to such an ancestral species.[5] This hypothesis was corroborated by later phylogenetic studies that included this taxon.[3][8]

Not yet categorized:
  • Pelican
  • Vulture
  • Condor

1 comment:

  1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anchiornis#Feathers
    "As in other early paravians such as Microraptor, Anchiornis had large wings, made up of pennaceous flight feathers attached to the arm and hand (as in modern birds) as well as flight feathers on the hind legs, forming an arrangement of fore and hind wings."