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Palaeontology

Giant bird had a head the size of a horse's

By T.K. Randall
February 13, 2016 · Comment icon 5 comments

Gastornis was a force to be reckoned with. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 2.0 markow76
A huge flightless bird called Gastornis is thought to have once roamed what is now the Arctic Circle.
The 6ft behemoth, which is believed to have eaten both plants and small animals, lived 53 million years ago on what is now Ellesmere island which at the time was a warm and humid swamp.

With a huge head similar in size to that of a horse and weighing in at several hundred pounds, Gastornis would have been a sight to behold and may have even roamed around in packs.
Its existence in the Arctic was confirmed thanks to the discovery of a fossilized specimen in Wyoming which happened to match a fossil Gastornis toe bone found on Ellesmere island back in the 1970s.

"We knew there were a few bird fossils from up there, but we also knew they were extremely rare," said Associate Professor Jaelyn Eberl of the University of Colorado.

"In addition to the Gastornis bone from Ellesmere, another scientist reported seeing a fossil footprint there, probably from a large flightless bird, although its specific location remains unknown."

Source: The Guardian | Comments (5)




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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Aitrui 8 years ago
Looks a bit like a whales skull.
Comment icon #2 Posted by TonopahRick 8 years ago
I wonder if it tasted like chicken?
Comment icon #3 Posted by third_eye 8 years ago
I doubt it ... all it needs is the Colonels secret recipe ... ~
Comment icon #4 Posted by Myles 8 years ago
They call it the Sarah Jessica Parker fowl.
Comment icon #5 Posted by Infernal Gnu 8 years ago
I LOVE THIS KIND OF STUFF! A giant flightless bird. Amazing.


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