Category Archive: extinct

Oct 28 2014

Rarest birds of the World: The Himalayan Quail (Ophrysia superciliosa)

An interesting writing by Rajiv Kalsi, Rahul Kaul and S Sathyakumar. It was published as part of the ongoing study of Pheasants and allies in India. In my opinion the most complete paper-based search review for the elusive Himalayan Quail. I asked for permission by mail to publish on PoB, but have yet to receive …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.planetofbirds.com/the-himalayan-quail-ophrysia-superciliosa-extinct-or-evasive

Aug 04 2014

Rarest birds in the World: Taita Apalis (Apalis fuscigularis)

This species is endemic to the tiny, fragmented forests of the Taita Hills, where it occurs in only four remnant patches, totalling less than 150 ha in area, on a single massif. It is also found in a larger patch of lesser disturbed forest on the adjacent massif of Mbololo. The Taita Hills are a …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.planetofbirds.com/rarest-birds-in-the-world-taita-apalis-apalis-fuscigularis

Aug 03 2014

Rarest birds in the World: Sulu Hornbill (Anthracoceros montani)

Bourns and Worcester in 1894 wrote the following account: We were so fortunate as to secure aseries of fourteen specimens of this rare horn-bill from Sulu and Tawi Tawi. The tail is pure white. All other parts black, the feathers of back and wings glossed with dark green. The bill in abult birds is coal …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.planetofbirds.com/rarest-birds-in-the-world-sulu-hornbill-anthracoceros-montani

Aug 03 2014

Rarest birds in the World: Glaucous Macaw (Anodorynchus glaucus)

Comments on the Glaucous Macaw were first published by Sanchez Labrador (1767) who wrote that the Guaa’-obi lived along the banks of the Uruguay River, and to a lesser extent, in the forest near the Paraguay River. The species was first described by Vieillot in 1816, as Anodorhynchus glaucus, based on the observations of Azara …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.planetofbirds.com/rarest-birds-in-the-world-glaucous-macaw-anodorynchus-glaucus

May 22 2013

The Great Auk in Penobscot folklore

The great auk, now almost forgotten in the world by all except the ornithologists, is still remembered among the Penobscot as one of the legendary bird chiefs. While we may hesitate a moment in believing the strict identity of this now-extinct bird with the hero character in one of the creation tales, it nevertheless seems …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.planetofbirds.com/the-great-auk-in-penobscot-folklore

Mar 03 2012

Scientists get first full look at prehistoric New Zealand penguin, the largest ever.

kairuku penguin Artwork by Chris Gaskin

Story After 35 years, a giant fossil penguin has finally been completely reconstructed, giving researchers new insights into prehistoric penguin diversity. The bones were collected in 1977 by Dr. Ewan Fordyce, a paleontologist from the University of Otago, New Zealand. In 2009 and 2011, Dr. Dan Ksepka, North Carolina State University research assistant professor of …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.planetofbirds.com/scientists-get-first-full-look-at-prehistoric-new-zealand-penguin-the-largest-ever

Jul 01 2011

Tahiti Rail (Gallirallus pacificus)

The story The Tahitian Red-billed or Tahiti Rail is known only from a painting that survives today in the collection of the Natural History Museum, London. This painting was produced by Georg Forster, one of the naturalists who sailed with Captain James Cook on his second epic voyage around the world during the 1770’s. Forster’s …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.planetofbirds.com/gruiformes-rallidae-tahiti-rail-gallirallus-pacificus

Jul 01 2011

Liverpool Pigeon (Caloenas maculata)

The story Two hundred years ago there were two specimens of this species in existence. Now there is just one. No-one knows where it came from or when it was collected, although this was certainly at some time during the last half of the eighteenth century. The specimen is now in the collection of the …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.planetofbirds.com/columbiformes-columbidae-liverpool-pigeon-caloenas-maculata

Jul 01 2011

Akialoa (Hemignathus obscurus)

The story Because it is so poorly known, the honeycreeper family, in particular its extinct members, arouses a certain amount of controversy. It is classified and reclassified over and over again, and drastic revisions of the family are made from time to time. Unfortunately, these revisions are, of necessity, made from specimen material rather than …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.planetofbirds.com/passeriformes-drepanididae-akialoa-hemignathus-obscurus

Jul 01 2011

Rodrigues Solitaire (Pezophaps solitaria)

The story The island of Rodrigues, far out in the Indian Ocean, is one of the Mascarene group and here a dodo-like species evolved from an ancestral pigeon stock. This species has become known as the Rodrigues Solitaire. The Huguenot refugee Francois Leguat, whose name occurs so regularly in the stories of extinct birds, took …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.planetofbirds.com/columbiformes-raphidae-rodrigues-solitaire-pezophaps-solitaria

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