Paleonews

Il blog dedicato ai Paleontologi !!!!

2009-03-01 – Perù: fossile di uccello gigante (Giant fossil bird)

Perù: paleontologia, trovato fossile uccello di 10mln di anni

Sabato 28 febbraio 2009 02.25
Il fossile di un gigantesco uccello vissuto circa 10 milioni di anni fa è stato ritrovato nella regione di Ocucaje, nel Perù meridionale. Mario Urbina, paleontologo nel Museo nazionale di storia naturale, ha detto che il volatile sembra appartenere ai pelagornitidi, una specie comparsa circa 50 milioni di anni fa e estinta 2,5 milioni di anni fa a causa dei cambiamenti climatici. Questo tipo di uccello aveva un’apertura alare di oltre sei metri, nidificava in prossimità delle coste e si cibava dei pesci che riusciva a catturare tuffandosi nel Pacifico. Nel corso di scavi in corso nella regione, alcuni ricercatori hanno ritrovato la testa fossile dell’uccello, lunga circa 40 centimetri. Oltre alla considerevole apertura alare, una delle caratteristiche più curiose di questa specie è la presenza di denti all’estremità del becco.
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Fossil skull of giant toothy seabird found in Peru

LIMA, Peru (AP) — The unusually intact fossilized skull of a giant, bony-toothed seabird that lived up to 10 million years ago was found on Peru’s arid southern coast, researchers said Friday.

The fossil is the best-preserved cranium ever found of a pelagornithid, a family of large seabirds believed to have gone extinct some 3 million years ago, said Rodolfo Salas, head of vertebrate paleontology at Peru’s National History Museum.

The museum said in a statement that the birds had wingspans of up to 20 feet (6 meters) and may have used the toothlike projections on their beaks to prey on slippery fish and squid. But studying members of the Pelagornithidae family has been difficult because their extremely thin bones — while helpful for keeping the avian giants aloft — tended not to survive as fossils.

“Its fossils are very strange, very rare and very hard to find,” Salas told The Associated Press.

The cranium discovered in Peru is 16 inches (40 centimeters) long and is believed to be 8 million to 10 million years old, based on the age of the rock bed in which it was found.

“Rarely are any bones of these gigantic, marine birds found fossilized uncrushed, and to find an uncrushed skull of this size is very significant,” said Ken Campbell, curator of vertebrate zoology at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles.

Campbell, who examined photos of the find but was not involved in the dig, said he knows of “no specimen of comparable quality.”

Dan Kepska, a paleontology researcher at North Carolina State University who also was not part of the project, agreed that the skull is the most complete ever reported.

He called the birds “one of the great enigmas of avian paleontology.”

With fossils discovered in North America, North Africa and even Antarctica, Kepska said, the birds were ubiquitous only a few million years before humans evolved and scientists puzzle over why they died out. Some believe they are related to gannets and pelicans, while other say they are related to ducks.

Campbell said the Peru find “will undoubtedly be of great importance to our understanding of these gigantic birds, and it will help clarify the relationships of the other fossil pelagornithids found in the Pisco Formation.”

The formation, a coastal rock bed south of the capital, Lima, is known for yielding fossils of whales, dolphins, turtles and other marine life dating as far back as 14 million years.

source: AssociatedPress

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Fossil skull of giant toothy seabird found in Peru

The Associated Press – ‎28-feb-2009‎
The fossil is the best-preserved cranium ever found of a pelagornithid, a family of large seabirds believed to have gone extinct some 3 million years ago,
CBC.ca

 

 

marzo 1, 2009 - Posted by | - Uccelli / Birds, America Southern, An. Vertebrates, Cenozoic, Lang. - Italiano, P - Ritrovamenti fossili, Paleontology / Paleontologia | , , , , ,

2 commenti »

  1. […] ook dit is nieuws: In Peru is de schedel van een enorme zeevogel gevonden. Tot zover niks bijzonders, maar […]

    Pingback di ‘Een op de vijf Nederlanders gelooft scheppingsverhaal’ « Verzet Blogspot | marzo 1, 2009

  2. […] ook dit is nieuws: Lima, 28 februari 2009. In Peru is de schedel van een enorme zeevogel gevonden. Tot […]

    Pingback di Spectaculaire prehistorische vondsten in Peru en Kenia « Verzet Blogspot | marzo 1, 2009


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