The Skull Structure of an Ostrich

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“Dromaeognathous skull of ostrich, nat. size specimen no. 16,629, U.S. Nat Museum, by Dr. R. W. Shufeldt, U.S.A. RR, rostrum, beyond which the ossified nasal septum continues in the axis of the skull to the letters “Pmx.” V, the short vomer, borne upon R, uniting laterally with Mxp, the broad maxillo-palatines; Pl, palatines, remote from rostrum, underrunning beyond Mxp, but not to Pmx. Pt, expanded scroll-like pterygoids, atriculating behind with Btp, the strong basipterygoid processes on the body (not rostum) of the sphenoid; they underlap R, but do not articulate there. Pmx, premaxillaries; Mx, maxillaries, whose ends run forward to opposite the letters “Pmx"; jugal; qj, quadrato-jugal; Qu, quadrate. (N.B. This is the most exceptional case of dromaeognathism. Each of the Ratite families - Struthionidae, Rheidae, Casuariidae, Dinornithidae, and Apterygidae, - as well as the Carinate family Tinamidae, offers a special case of such formation, as explained in the text.).” Elliot Coues, 1884


Bird Anatomy


Elliot Coues Key to North American Birds (Boston, MA: Estes and Lauriat, 1884)


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