|Modern magpie goose, Anseranas semipalmata|
This family is placed in the order Anseriformes, having the characteristic bill structure, but is considered to be distinct from the other families in this taxon. The related and extant families, Anhimidae (screamers) and Anatidae (ducks, geese and swans), contain all the other taxa.
A cladistic study of the morphology of waterfowl found that the magpie goose was an early and distinctive offshoot, diverging after screamers and before all other ducks, geese and swans.
This family is quite old, a living fossil, having apparently diverged before the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event – the relative Vegavis iaai lived some 68–67 million years ago. The fossil record is limited, nonetheless. The enigmatic genus Anatalavis (Hornerstown Late Cretaceous or Early Paleocene of New Jersey, USA – London Clay Early Eocene of Walton-on-the-Naze, England) is sometimes considered to be the earliest known anseranatid. Another Paleogene bird genus sometimes considered an anseranatid is Anserpica, from the Late Oligocene of Billy-Créchy (France). The earliest known member of the group in Australia is Eoanseranas handae represented by fossils found in the late Oligocene Carl Creek Limestone of Queensland. Additional fossils from North America and Europe suggest that the family was spread across the globe during the late Paleogene period.
The American tree sparrow (Spizelloides arborea), also known as the winter sparrow, is a medium-sized sparrow.
It had been classified under the genus Spizella, but multilocus molecular evidence suggested placement in its own genus.
Adults have a rusty cap and grey underparts with a small dark spot on the breast. They have a rusty back with lighter stripes, brown wings with white bars and a slim tail. Their face is grey with a rusty line through the eye. Their flanks are splashed with light brown. They are similar in appearance to the chipping sparrow.
Their breeding habitat is tundra or the northern limits of the boreal forest in Alaska and northern Canada. They nest on the ground.
These birds migrate into southern Canada and the United States to spend the winter. Usually, chipping sparrows are moving south around the same time as these birds arrive.
These birds forage on the ground or in low bushes, often in flocks when not nesting. They mainly eat seeds and insects, but also eat some berries. They are commonly seen near feeders with dark-eyed juncos.
This bird's song is a sweet high warble descending in pitch and becoming buzzy near the finish.Anatalavis
Anatalavis is genus of prehistoric birds related to ducks and geese, perhaps in particular the magpie-goose. The species Anatalavis rex – formerly placed in Telmatornis – is known from the Hornerstown Formation (Late Cretaceous or Early Paleocene, some 66 million years ago) of New Jersey. Anatalavis oxfordi was described based on fossils found in the Eocene (Ypresian age) London Clay (about 55 mya) at Walton-on-the-Naze, England.Anatidae
The Anatidae are the biological family of water birds that includes ducks, geese, and swans. The family has a cosmopolitan distribution, occurring on all the world's continents. These birds are adapted for swimming, floating on the water surface, and in some cases diving in at least shallow water. The family contains around 146 species in 43 genera. (The magpie goose is no longer considered to be part of the Anatidae and is now placed in its own family, Anseranatidae.)
They are generally herbivorous, and are monogamous breeders. A number of species undertake annual migrations. A few species have been domesticated for agriculture, and many others are hunted for food and recreation. Five species have become extinct since 1600, and many more are threatened with extinction.Anseriformes
Anseriformes is an order of birds that comprise about 180 living species in three families: Anhimidae (the 3 screamers), Anseranatidae (the magpie goose), and Anatidae, the largest family, which includes over 170 species of waterfowl, among them the ducks, geese, and swans. Most modern species in the order are highly adapted for an aquatic existence at the water surface. With the exception of screamers, all have phalli, a trait that has been lost in the Neoaves. Due to their aquatic nature, most species are web-footed.Bluebird
The bluebirds are a group of medium-sized, mostly insectivorous or omnivorous birds in the order of Passerines in the genus Sialia of the thrush family (Turdidae). Bluebirds are one of the few thrush genera in the Americas. They have blue, or blue and rose beige, plumage. Female birds are less brightly colored than males, although color patterns are similar and there is no noticeable difference in size between the two sexes.Eoanseranas
Eoanseranas handae, also sometimes referred to as Hand's dawn magpie goose, is an extinct genus and species of bird, allied to the Anseranatidae family represented by modern magpie geese, from the Late Oligocene or Early Miocene of northern Australia. It was described from fossil material (a left coracoid and two left scapulae) found at a Carl Creek Limestone site at Riversleigh, in the Boodjamulla National Park of north-western Queensland. It was slightly smaller than its perceived descendant, the extant magpie goose. The generic name comes from the Greek eos ("dawn") and Anseranas, for the apparent ancestral connection to the modern species Anseranas semipalmata. The specific epithet honours Australian palaeontologist Suzanne Hand, a prominent researcher of the fossil faunas of Riversleigh.Goose
A goose (plural geese) is a bird of any of several waterfowl species in the family Anatidae. This group comprises the genera Anser (the grey geese), Branta (the black geese), and Chen (which includes the white geese); the latter being commonly placed within the genus Anser. Some other birds, mostly related to the shelducks, have "goose" as part of their names. More distantly related members of the family Anatidae are swans, most of which are larger than true geese, and ducks, which are smaller.
The term "goose" is more properly used for a female bird, while "gander" refers specifically to a male one. Young birds before fledging are called goslings. The collective noun for a group of geese on the ground is a gaggle; when in flight, they are called a skein, a team, or a wedge; when flying close together, they are called a plump.List of birds of Australia, New Zealand and Antarctica
This list is based on the Handbook of Australian, New Zealand and Antarctic Birds list, May 2002 update, with the doubtfuls omitted. It includes the birds of Australia, New Zealand, Antarctica, and the surrounding ocean and subantarctic islands.
Australian call-ups are based on the List of Australian birds.
New Zealand call-ups are based on the List of New Zealand birds.List of birds of South Australia
This is a list of birds of South Australia, a state within Australia.Magpie goose
The magpie goose (Anseranas semipalmata) is the sole living representative species of the family Anseranatidae. This common waterbird is found in northern Australia and southern New Guinea. As the species is prone to wandering, especially when not breeding, it is sometimes recorded outside its core range. The species was once also widespread in southern Australia, but disappeared from there largely due to the drainage of the wetlands where the birds once bred. Due to their importance to the local aboriginals as a seasonal food source, as subjects of recreational hunting, and as a tourist attraction, their expansive and stable presence in northern Australia has been "ensured protective management".Olive-sided flycatcher
The olive-sided flycatcher (Contopus cooperi) is a passerine bird. It is a medium-sized tyrant flycatcher.Rallus
Rallus is a genus of wetland birds of the rail family. Sometimes, the genera Lewinia and Gallirallus are included in it. Six of the species are found in the Americas, and the three species found in Eurasia, Africa and Madagascar are very closely related to each other, suggesting they are descended from a single invasion of a New World ancestor.These are slim, long-billed rails with slender legs. Their laterally flattened bodies are an adaptation to life in wet reedbeds and marshes, enabling them to slip easily through the dense semi-aquatic vegetation. Typically these birds have streaked brown upperparts, blue-grey on the face or breast, and barred flanks. Only the African rail has a plain back, and the plain-flanked rail lacks any blue-grey in its plumage and has no flank bars.Three endemic South American species are endangered by habitat loss, and the Madagascan rail is becoming rare.Sibley-Monroe checklist 2
The Sibley-Monroe checklist was a landmark document in the study of birds. It drew on extensive DNA-DNA hybridisation studies to reassess the relationships between modern birds.Streaked spiderhunter
The streaked spiderhunter (Arachnothera magna) is a species of bird in the family Nectariniidae.Suzanne Hand
Suzanne J. Hand (born 1955) is an associate professor at the University of New South Wales, where she teaches geology and biology, who has a special interest in vertebrate palaeontology and modern mammals. Her research has been published in over a hundred articles, and is especially focused on the subjects of evolutionary biology, functional morphology, phylogenetics, and biogeography. Hand is a co-leader of the research team investigating the Riversleigh World Heritage Area, regarded as one of the four most important site of fossil-bearing formations in the world.Amongst the recognitions of Hand's contributions is a specific epithet of a fossil species of bird, Eoanseranas handae, discovered in the Riversleigh fossil sites.Tadorninae
The Tadorninae is the shelduck-sheldgoose subfamily of the Anatidae, the biological family that includes the ducks and most duck-like waterfowl such as the geese and swans.
This group is largely tropical or Southern Hemisphere in distribution, with only two species, the common shelduck and the ruddy shelduck breeding in northern temperate regions, though the crested shelduck (presumed extinct) was also a northern species.
Most of these species have a distinctive plumage, but there is no pattern as to whether the sexes are alike, even within a single genus.Whimbrel
The whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus) is a wader in the large family Scolopacidae. It is one of the most widespread of the curlews, breeding across much of subarctic North America, Asia and Europe as far south as Scotland.
The whimbrel is a migratory bird wintering on coasts in Africa, southern North America, South America, and South Asia into Australasia. It is also a coastal bird during migration. It is fairly gregarious outside the breeding season.Whistling duck
The whistling ducks or tree ducks are a subfamily, Dendrocygninae, of the duck, goose and swan family of birds, Anatidae. They are not true ducks. In other taxonomic schemes, they are considered a separate family, Dendrocygnidae. Some taxonomists list only one genus, Dendrocygna, which contains eight living species, and one undescribed extinct species from Aitutaki of the Cook Islands, but other taxonomists also list the white-backed duck (Thalassornis leuconotus) under the subfamily.