Evolution and systematics Tinamous - animals.worldmy.info

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Evolution and systematics Tinamous

Birds > Group of birds > Tinamous-Tinamidae
Highland tinamou-Nothocercus bonapartei
Highland tinamou-Nothocercus bonapartei

Class    Aves
Thumbnail description

Small to medium-sized ground-dwelling birds with fully developed wings and capable of flight; cryptically colored in grays and browns, with three or four toes.

8–21 in (20–53 cm), 0.09–5 lb (43–2,300 g)
Number of genera, species

9 genera; 47 species

Rainforest, secondary forest, savanna woodland, montane steppe, grassland, and cropland

Conservation status
Critically Endangered: 2 species; Vulnerable: 5 species; Near Threatened: 4 species

In older natural history books, the description of birds usually began with ratites, including rheas, ostriches, cassowaries, kiwis, and the extinct moas and elephant birds of Madagascar. Because these large flightless birds have no keel on the sternum (breastbone), they are known as flat-chested birds, in contrast to all modern keel-breasted (Carinatae) birds. Today we know that the ratites descended from flying keel-breasted ancestors. Tinamous (Tinamidae) are a stillliving primitive bird family that may be close to the ancestral group of ratites.

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