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Commission: Bathornis veredus

October 24, 2016


Bathornis veredus sketch by @paleoart. For use in Wikipedia

Easily the most underated of all theropods, Bathornis was a highly successful genus of predatory, flightless birds related to the more iconic terror birds and the modern seriemas, spawning several species across the Eocene to Miocene… in North America. Some of these were as large as modern ratites at over 1,20 meters of height, ergo the genus’ name, “tall bird”. One species, Bathornis grallator (aka “Neocathartes”), has a reasonably preserved skull, which indicates that these were, in fact, predators.

Hunting leaves one spleepy, which is why this one is yawning.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. October 28, 2016 10:36 pm

    Here I must corect you. Bathornis means deep bird, not tall.

    • October 28, 2016 11:57 pm

      In context, it means “tall”. Maybe not grammatically correct, but it’s the reason for the naming

  2. October 31, 2016 8:44 pm

    I am Greek and so I can translate a scientific name easily. Perhaps the author confused deep with tall, because for example in english you say for a fish with some height that is deep-bodied, while in greek it would be called tall. Not all scientific names are grammatically or semanticly correct, some authors have chosen really elegant combinations of words, while others just took some latin or greek roots and combined them together disregarding grammar, syntaxe or meaning. Thrinaxodon and xiphosura are two utter solecisms for example.

    • October 31, 2016 8:51 pm

      True. Even today there are many grammatically unsound scientific names, such as Lacusovagus.

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