Latest Dromornithidae Stories

Ecosystem Changes Drove Extinction In Pleistocene Australia
2012-06-07 06:50:19

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com Scientists may have finally established the explanation for the disappearance of the giant koala and other Australian megafauna. Between 50,000 and 45,000 years ago, around 60 species of mammals, predominantly foraging herbivores called browsers, went extinct. These animals included 19 species that weighed over 100 kilograms, like the rhinoceros-sized giant wombat and half-ton marsupial Palorchestes azael. Slightly smaller animals like the flightless bird...

2005-07-07 13:08:17

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A study of ancient eggshells and teeth supports the controversial theory that early humans caused the extinction of many of Australia's huge animals by setting brush fires, researchers said on Thursday. The study also showed why it sometimes does not pay to be a picky eater -- the giant birds that were more choosy about their diets perished, while the indiscriminate emu survived. "We speculate that human firing of landscapes rapidly converted a drought-adapted mosaic...

2005-07-07 14:51:12

A shifting diet of two flightless birds inhabiting Australia tens of thousands of years ago is the best evidence yet that early humans may have altered the continent's interior with fire, changing it from a mosaic of trees, shrubs and grasses to the desert scrub evident today, according to a University of Colorado at Boulder-led team. The unprecedented ecosystem disruption is now thought to have led to the extinction of Australia's large terrestrial mammals, which disappeared shortly after...

2005-07-07 13:50:50

WASHINGTON -- The extinction of most of Australia's large animals occurred around 45,000 years ago, shortly after the arrival of humans. A study suggests that human burning of the landscape forced dietary changes that killed off many of the animals. Researchers studying ancient eggshells from two types of large birds, as well as the teeth of wombats, found a change in the types of carbon the animals had ingested, indicating a change in diet. Before the extinction, grasses, trees and shrubs...

Word of the Day
  • Boughs or branches.
  • Warbling of birds in trees.