, Volume 149, Issue 2, pp 211-216
Date: 19 Dec 2007

An Old World hummingbird from the Oligocene: a new fossil from Polish Carpathians

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Abstract

A near-complete, partially articulated skeleton of a hummingbird was recently found in the menilite shales of the Polish Flysh Carpathians. The specimen is dated to the Early Oligocene (Rupelian, approx. 31 Myr). It shares derived characters with extant hummingbirds and plesiomorphic characters with swifts. Its long, thin beak and short and stout humerus and ulna are typical for hummingbirds, but the coracoid resembles that observed in swifts. The osteology of the specimen is generally similar to that of the hummingbird described from the Early Tertiary of Germany but because it clearly differs in some characters from the German hummingbird Eurotrochilus inexpectatus, it is described as a new species of the same genus.

Communicated by J. Fjeldså.