Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Diversity of pseudo-toothed birds (Pelagornithidae) from the Eocene of Antarctica

  • Marcos Cenizo (a1) (a2), Carolina Acosta Hospitaleche (a3) and Marcelo Reguero (a3) (a4)
Abstract

The Antarctic pelagornithid record is restricted to few isolated remains from the Eocene of Seymour Island in the Antarctic Peninsula. Here we report the oldest Antarctic pseudo-toothed bird. It is represented by an incomplete humerus lacking its proximal end, which comes from the lower Eocene levels of the La Meseta Formation (Seymour Island). This new specimen facilitates a review of all known pelagornithids from this continent. Antarctic pelagornithids were classified into two morphotypes that exhibit a mix of putative plesiomorphic and derived characters. Considering the worldwide pelagornithid record and according to estimated wingspans, four approximate size-types were identified. The oldest Antarctic specimens (two fragmentary humeri, middle Ypresian) were assigned to morphotype 1 and correspond to the large size-type. The younger materials (Bartonian/?Priabonian) here assigned to morphotype 2 (some cranial remains, fragmentary tarsometatarsus and humerus) correspond to the giant size-type and represent one of the largest known pseudo-toothed birds. Even though species level phylogenetic affinities of Pelagornithidae remain poorly resolved, three key evolutionary events can be recognized: (1) the disappearance of Dasornis in the Early Eocene and the appearance of more advanced forms with a trend to the specialization of large soaring capacity, (2) the origin of Pelagornis sensu lato species in the early Oligocene, and (3) the appearance and dominance of a highly specialized terminal group at Mio/Pliocene time span.

Copyright
References
Hide All
Acosta Hospitaleche, C, 2015, New penguin giant bones from Antarctica: systematic and paleobiological significance: Comptes Rendus Palevol, v. 13, p. 555560.
Acosta Hospitaleche, C., and Haidr, N., 2011, Penguin (Aves, Sphenisciformes) cranial remains from the La Meseta Formation (Eocene) of Antarctic Peninsula (Antarctica): Antarctic Sciences, v. 23, p. 369378.
Acosta Hospitaleche, C., and Reguero, M., 2010, Taxonomic notes about Ichtyopteryx gracilis Wiman, 1905 and Orthopteryx gigas Wiman, 1905 (Aves, Spheniscidae): Alcheringa, v. 35, p. 463466.
Acosta Hospitaleche, C., and Reguero, M., 2015, Palaeeudyptes klekowskii, the most complete penguin skeleton found in the Eocene of Antarctica: taxonomic remarks: Geobios, v. 671, p. 19.
Andrews, C.W., 1916, Note on the sternum of a large carinate bird from the (?) Eocene of Southern Nigeria: Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London, v. 1916, p. 519524.
Baumel, J., and Witmer, L., 1993, Osteologia, in Baumel, J., King, A., Breazile, J., Evans, H., and Vanden Berge, J., eds., Handbook of Avian Anatomy: Nomina Anatomica Avium, Boston, Massachusetts, Publications of the Nuttall Ornithological Club, p. 45132.
Bieñkowska-Wasiluk, M., Bonde, N., Moller, P., and Gazdzicki, A., 2013, Eocene relatives of cod icefishes (Perciformes: Notothenioidei) from Seymour Island: Antarctica, Geological Quarterly, v. 57, p. 567582.
Bourdon, E., 2005, Osteological evidence for sister group relationship between pseudo-toothed birds (Aves: Odontopterygiformes) and waterfowls (Anseriformes): Naturwissenschaften, v. 92, p. 586591.
Bourdon, E., 2011, The pseudo-toothed birds (Aves, Odontopterygiformes) and their bearing on the early evolution of modern birds, in Dyke, G., and Kaiser, G., eds., Living Dinosaurs, The Evolutionary History of Modern Birds, London, John Wiley and Sons Ltd, p. 209234.
Bourdon, E., and Cappetta, H., 2012, Pseudo-toothed birds (Aves, Odontopterygiformes) from the eocene phosphate deposits of Togo, Africa: Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, v. 32, p. 965970.
Bourdon, E., Amaghzaz, M., and Bouya, B., 2010, Pseudotoothed birds (Aves, Odontopterygiformes) from the early Tertiary of Morocco: American Museum Novitates, v. 3704, p. 171.
Boessenecker, R.W., and Smith, N.A., 2011, Latest Pacific Basin record of a bony-toothed bird (Aves, Pelagornithidae) from the Pliocene Purisima Formation of California, U.S.A.: Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, v. 31, p. 652657.
Bowerbank, J.S., 1854, On the remains of a gigantic bird (Lithornis emuinus) from the London Clay of Sheppey: Annals and Magazine of Natural History, v. 14, p. 263264.
Brodkorb, P., 1963, Catalogue of fossil birds, part 1: Archaeopterygiformes through Ardeiformes: Bulletin of the Florida State Museum, Biological Sciences, v. 7, p. 179293.
Case, J., Reguero, M., Martin, J., and Cordes-Person, A., 2006, A cursorial bird from the Maastrichtian of Antarctica: Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, v. 26 (3, supplement), p. 48A.
Cenizo, M.M., 2012, Review of the putative Phorusrhacidae from the Cretaceous and Paleogene of Antarctica: new records of ratites and pelagornithid birds: Polish Polar Research, v. 33, p. 239258.
Chavez, M., Stucchi, M., and Urbina, M., 2007, El registro de Pelagornithidae (Aves: Pelecaniformes) y la avifauna neógena del Pacífico sudeste: Bulletin del ’Institut Français d’Études Andines, v. 36, p. 175197.
Clarke, J.A., Ksepka, D., Stucchi, M., Urbina, M., Giannini, N., Bertelli, S., Narváez, Y., and Boyd, C.A., 2007, Paleogene equatorial penguins challenge the proposed relationship between biogeography, diversity and Cenozoic climate change: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, v. 104, p. 1154511550.
Del Valle, R.A., Elliot, D., and MacDonald, D.I., 1992, Sedimentary basins on the east flank of the Antarctic Peninsula: proposed nomenclature: Antarctic Science, v. 4, p. 477478.
Elliot, D.H., and Trautman, T.A., 1982, Lower Tertiary strata on Seymour Island, Antarctic Peninsula, in Craddock, C., ed., Antarctic Geoscience: Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, p. 287297.
Fitzgerald, E.M.G., Park, T., and Worthy, T.H., 2012, First giant bony-toothed bird (Pelagornithidae) from Australia: Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, v. 32, p. 971974.
Fürbringer, M., 1888, Untersuchungen zur Morphologie und Systematik der Vögel, zugleich ein Beitrag zur Anatomie der Stützund Bewegungsorgane, Amsterdam, van Holkema, 1751 p.
Goedert, J.L., 1989, Giant Late Eocene marine birds (Pelecaniformes, p. Pelagornithidae) from north-western Oregon: Journal of Paleontology, v. 63, p. 939944.
González-Barba, G., Scwennicke, T., Goedert, J.L., and Barnes, L.G., 2002, Earliest Pacific Basin record of the Pelagornithidae (Aves: Pelecaniformes): Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, v. 22, p. 722725.
Harrison, C.J.O., and Walker, C.A., 1976, A review of the bony-toothed birds (Odontopterygiformes): with description of some new species: Tertiary Research Special Paper, v. 2, p. 162.
Hopson, J.A., 1964, Pseudodontornis and other large marine birds from the Miocene of South Carolina: Postilla, v. 83, p. 119.
Howard, H., 1957, A gigantic “toothed” marine bird from the Miocene of California: Bulletin of the Department of Geology of the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History, v. 1, p. 123.
Howard, H., 1978, Late Miocene marine birds from Orange County, California: Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Contributions in Science, v. 290, p. 125.
Howard, H., and Warter, S.L., 1969, A new species of bony-toothed bird (Family Pseudodontornithidae) from the Tertiary of New Zealand: Records of the Canterbury Museum, v. 8, p. 345357.
Ivany, L.C., Lohmann, K.C., Hasiuk, F., Blake, D.B., Glass, A., Aronson, R.B., and Moody, R.M., 2008, Eocene climate record of a high southern latitude continental shelf: Seymour Island, Antarctica: Geological Society of America Bulletin, v. 120, p. 659678.
Jadwiszczak, P., and Acosta Hospitaleche, C., 2013, Distinguishing between two Antarctic species of Eocene Palaeeudyptes penguins: a statistical approach using tarsometatarsi: Polish Polar Research, v. 34, p. 237252.
Jones, C.M., 2000, The first record of a fossil bird from East Antarctica, in Stilwell, J.D., and Feldmann, R.M., eds., Paleobiology and paleoenvironments of Eocene rocks, McMurdo Sound, East Antarctica, American Geophysical Union, Washington, DC, Antarctic Research Series, v. 76, p. 359364.
Ksepka, D.T., 2014, Flight performance of the largest volant bird: PNAS doi/10.1073/pnas.1320297111.
Ksepka, D.T., and Bertelli, S., 2006, Fossil penguin (Aves: Sphenisciformes) cranial material from the Eocene of Seymour Island (Antarctica): Historical Biology, v. 18, p. 389395.
Ksepka, D.T., and Clarke, J.A., 2010, The basal penguin (Aves: Sphenisciformes) Perudyptes devriesi and a phylogenetic evaluation of the penguin fossil record: Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History, v. 337, p. 177.
Ksepka, D.T., and Ando, T., 2011, Penguins past, present, and future: trends in the evolution of the Sphenisciformes, in Dyke, G., and Kaiser, G., eds., Living Dinosaurs, The Evolutionary History of Modern Birds, West Sussex, UK, Wiley-Blackwell, p. 155186.
Lambrecht, K., 1930, Studien über fossile Riesenvögel: Geologica Hungarica, Series Palaeontologica, v. 7, p. 137.
Lartet, E., 1857, Note sur un humérus fossile d’oiseau, attribué à un très grand palmipède de la section des Longipennes: Compte Rendu Hebdomadaire des Séances de l’Académie des Sciences, v. 44, p. 736741.
Louchart, A., Sire, J.Y., Mourer-Chauviré, C., Geraads, D., Viriot, L., and de Buffrénil, V., 2013, Structure and growth pattern of pseudoteeth in Pelagornis mauretanicus (Aves, Odontopterygiformes, Pelagornithidae): PLoSOne, p. e80372.
Marenssi, S.A., 2006, Eustatically controlled sedimentation recorded by Eocene strata of the James Ross Basin, Antarctica, in Francis, J., and Crame, J.A., eds., Cretaceous-Tertiary High-Latitude Palaeoenvironments, James Ross Basin, Antarctica, London, Geological Society of London, Special Publications, v. 258, p. 125133.
Marenssi, S.A., Santillana, S.N., and Rinaldi, C.A., 1998aStratigraphy of La Meseta Formation (Eocene), Marambio Island, Antarctica, in Casadío, S., ed., Paleógeno de América del Sur y de la Península Antártica: Buenos Aires, Revista de la Asociación Paleontológica Argentina, Publicación Especial, v. 5, p. 137146.
Marenssi, S.A., Santillana, S.N., and Rinaldi, C.A., 1998bPaleoambientes sedimentarios de la Aloformación La Meseta (Eoceno), Isla Marambio (Seymour), Antártida: Instituto Antártico Argentino, Contribución, v. 464, p. 151.
Marenssi, S.A., Net, L.I., and Santillana, S., 2002, Provenance, environmental and paleogegraphic ontrols on sandstone composition in an incised-valley system: the Eocene La Meseta Formation, Seymour Island, Antartica: Sedimentary Geology, v. 150, p. 301321.
Mayr, G., 2008, A skull of the giant bony-toothed bird Dasornis (Aves: Pelagornithidae) from the lower Eocene of the Isle of Sheppey: Palaeontology, v. 51, p. 11071116.
Mayr, G., 2009, Paleogene Fossil Birds, Heidelberg, Springer, 262 p.
Mayr, G., 2011, Cenozoic mystery birds, on the phylogenetic affinities of bony-toothed birds (Pelagornithidae): Zoologica Scripta, v. 40, p. 448467.
Mayr, G., and Rubilar-Rogers, D., 2010, Osteology of a new giant bony-toothed bird from the Miocene of Chile, with a revision of the taxonomy of Neogene Pelagornithidae: Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, v. 30, p. 13131330.
Mayr, G., and Smith, T., 2010, Bony-toothed birds (Aves: Pelagornithidae) from the Middle Eocene of Belgium: Palaeontology, v. 53, p. 365376.
Mayr, G., and Zvonok, E., 2011, Middle Eocene Pelagornithidae and Gaviiformes (Aves) from the Ukrainian Paratethys: Palaeontology, v. 54, p. 13471359.
Mayr, G., and Zvonok, E., 2012, A new genus and species of Pelagornithidae with well-preserved pseudodentition and further avian remains from the middle Eocene of the Ukraine: Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, v. 32, p. 914925.
Mayr, G., Hazevoet, C.J., Dantas, P., and Cachao, M., 2008, A sternum of a very large bony-toothed bird (Pelagornithidae) from the Miocene of Portugal: Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, v. 28, p. 762769.
Mayr, G., Goedert, J.L., and McLeod, S.A., 2013, Partial skeleton of a bony-toothed bird from the late Oligocene/early Miocene of Oregon (USA) and the systematics of neogene Pelagornithidae: Journal of Paleontology, v. 87, p. 922929.
Montes, M., Nozal, F., Santillana, S., Marenssi, S., and Olivero, E., 2013, Mapa Geológico de Isla Marambio (Seymour), Antártida, 1ª edición: Serie Cartográfica, escala, v. 1, p. 20.000.
Mourer-Chauviré, C., and Geraads, D., 2008, The Struthionidae and Pelagornithidae (Aves: Struthioniformes, Odontopterygiformes) from the late Pliocene of Ahl al Oughlam, Morocco: Oryctos, v. 7, p. 169194.
Noriega, J., and Tambussi, C., 1996, The non penguin avifauna from the Eocene (early Oligocene?) of Seymour Island, Antarctic Peninsula: Fourth International Meeting of the Society of Avian Paleontology and Evolution, Abstracts, p. 13.
Okazaki, Y., 1989, An occurence of fossil bony-toothed bird (Odontopterygiformes) from the Ashiya Group (Oligocene), Japan: Bulletin of the Kitakyushu Museum of Natural History, v. 9, p. 123126.
Olson, S.L., 1984, A brief synopsis of the fossil birds from the Pamunkey River and other Tertiary marine deposits in Virginia, in Ward, L.W., and Krafft, K., eds., Stratigraphy and Paleontology of the Outcropping Tertiary Beds in the Pamunkey River Region, Central Virginia Coastal Plain, Guidebook for the 1984 Field Trip, Norfolk, Virginia, Atlantic Coastal Plain Geological Association, p. 217223.
Olson, S.L., 1985, The fossil record of birds, in Farner, D.S., King, J.R., and Parkes, K.C., eds., Avian Biology, v. 8. New York, Academic Press, p. 79238.
Olson, S.L., and Rasmussen, P.C.P., 2001, Miocene and Pliocene birds from the Lee Creek Mine, North Carolina: Smithsonian Contributions to Paleobiology, v. 90, p. 233365.
Ono, K., 1980, Pliocene tubinare bird from Kakegawa, Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan: Memoirs of the National Science Museum, v. 13, p. 2935.
Owen, R., 1870, On Dinornis (Part XIV), containing contributions to the craniology of the genus, with a description of a fossil cranium of Dasornis londinensis Ow., from the London Clay of Sheppey: Transactions of the Zoological Society of London, v. 7, p. 123150.
Owen, R., 1873, Description of the skull of a dentigerous bird (Odontopteryx toliapicus, Ow.) from the London Clay of Sheppey: Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society of London, v. 29, p. 511522.
Porebski, S.J., 1995, Facies architecture in a tectonically controlled incised-valley estuary, p. La Meseta Formation (Eocene) of Seymour Island, Antarctic Peninsula, in Birkenmajer, K., ed., Geological Results of the Polish Antarctic Expeditions, Part XI: Studia Geologica Polonica, v. 107, p. 797.
Reguero, M., Goin, F., Acosta Hospitaleche, C., Dutra, T., and Marenssi, S., 2013, Late Cretaceous/Paleogene West Antarctica Terrestrial Biota and its Intercontinental Affinities, London, Springer Briefs in Earth System Sciences, London, 120 p.
Rincón, R.A.D., and Stucchi, M., 2003, Primer registro de la familia Pelagornithidae (Aves: Pelecaniformes) para Venezuela: Boletín de la Sociedad Venezolana de Espeleología, v. 37, p. 2730.
Rubilar-Rogers, D., Yury-Yáñez, R., Mayr, G., Gutstein, C., and Otero, R., 2011, A humerus of a giant late Eocene Pseudo-toothed Bird from Antarctica: Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology (supplement to the online), p. 182.
Shufeldt, R.W., 1916, New extinct bird from South Carolina: Geological Magazine, v. 6, p. 343347.
Stidham, T.A., 2004, New skull material of Osteodontornis orri (Aves: Pelagornithidae) from the Miocene of California: PaleoBios, v. 24, p. 712.
Stilwell, J.D., Jones, C.M., Levy, R.H., and Harwood, D.M., 1998, First fossil bird from East Antarctica: Antarctic Journal, v. 23, p. 1216.
Tambussi, C., and Acosta Hospitaleche, C., 2007, Antarctic birds (Neornithes) during the Cretaceous-Eocene times: Revista de la Asociación Geológica, v. 62, p. 604617.
Tambussi, C.P., and Degrange, F.J., 2013, South American and Antarctic continental Cenozoic birds, paleobiogeographic affinities and disparities, London, Springer Briefs in Earth System Sciences, 120 p.
Tonni, E.P., 1980, Un pseudodontornitido (Pelecaniformes, Odontopterygia) de gran tamaño, del Terciario temprano de Antártida: Ameghiniana, v. 17, p. 273276.
Tonni, E., and Cione, A., 1978, Una nueva colección de vertebrados del Terciario inferior de la isla Vicecomodoro Marambio (Seymour Island), Antártida: Obras Centenario Museo de la Plata, v. 5, p. 7379.
Tonni, E., and Tambussi, C., 1985, Nuevos restos de Odontopterygia (Aves: Pelecaniformes) del Terciario temprano de Antártida: Ameghiniana, v. 21, p. 121124.
Wetmore, A., 1928, The systematic position of the fossil bird Cyphornis magnus: Canada Department of Mines Geological Survey Bulletin, v. 49, p. 14.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Journal of Paleontology
  • ISSN: 0022-3360
  • EISSN: 1937-2337
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-paleontology
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 6
Total number of PDF views: 23 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 781 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 22nd September 2018. This data will be updated every 24 hours.