Mar 22 2013
Time for a quiz!
Remember the first time you were puzzled by the arrangement of birds in your field guide? Why were loons at the beginning of the book? Why did kingfishers come after hummingbirds?
It took me a long time to get used to taxonomic order but I finally mastered it and could thumb to the right place every time.
Not anymore! DNA testing has revealed new relationships. The old order is shaken up. Ducks are first, kingfishers follow motmots, falcons have moved to be near their closest relatives.
So here’s a quiz:
Of the four birds shown below, which two are most closely related to peregrines?
Red-tailed hawk? Red-crowned parrot?
Red-legged seriema ? Yellow-crowned night heron?
Pick two and leave a comment with your answer.
Peregrine falcon (Dorothy) by Jessica Cernic Freeman,
Red-tailed hawk by Bobby Greene,
Red-crowned parrot by Roger Moore Glandauer via Wikimedia Commons,
Red-legged seriema from Wikimedia Commons,
Yellow-crowned night-heron by Chuck Tague.
Inspiration for this Tenth Page comes from a conversation with Dr. Tony Bledsoe, Dept of Biological Sciences, University of Pittsburgh)
p.s. Watch this space for clues.