Teratornis merriami Miller, 1909

Merriam's teratorn



Taxonomy & Nomenclature

Synonym/s: Pleistogyps rex Miller, 1910


Conservation Status


Last record: Late Pleistocene (18-20 ka BP)



North America


Biology & Ecology










Original scientific description:

Miller, Loye H. (1909). Teratornis, a new avian genus from Rancho La Brea. University of California Publications, Bulletin of the Department of Geology 5: 305-317.


Other references:

Campbell, K. E., Jr., and Tonni, Eduardo P. (1981). Preliminary observations on the paleobiology and evolution of teratorns (Aves: Teratornithidae). Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 1:265-272.

Campbell, K. E., Jr., and Tonni, Eduardo P. (1983). Size and locomotion in teratorns (Aves: Teratornithidae). Auk 100(2): 390-403.

Cenizo, Marcos et al. (2021). First Pleistocene South American Teratornithidae (Aves): new insights into the late evolutionary history of teratorns. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 41(2): e1927064.

Emslie, Steven D. (1995). An early Irvingtonian avifauna from Leisey Shell Pit, Florida. Bull. Fla. Mus. Nat. Hist. 37(1): 299-344.

Emslie, Steven D. (1998). Avian community, climate, and sea-level changes in the Plio-Pleistocene of the Florida Peninsula. Ornithological Monographs, No. 50: iii + 113 pp.

Emslie, Steven D. and Heaton, Timothy H. (1987). The Late Pleistocene Avifauna of Crystal Ball Cave, Utah. Journal of the Arizona-Nevada Academy of Science 21(2): 53-60. [Abstract]

Fisher, H. (1945). Locomotion in the fossil vulture Teratornis. Amer. Midland Natur. 33: 725-742.

Guthrie, D. A. 2009. An updated catalogue of the birds from the Carpinteria Asphalt, Pleistocene of California. Bulletin of the Southern California Academy of Sciences 108(2):52-62.

Harris, Arthur H. (1993). Quaternary vertebrates of New Mexico, pp. 179-197. In: Vertebrate Paleontology in New Mexico, New Mexico Museum of Natural History, Bulletin 2:i-vii, 1-338.

Hertel, Fritz. (1995). Ecomorphological indicators of feeding behavior in recent and fossil raptors. The Auk 112(4): 890-903.

Howard, H. (1930). A census of the Pleistocene birds of Rancho La Brea from the collections of the Los Angeles Museum. Condor 32(2): 81-88, 3 text figs.

Howard, H. (1962). A comparison of prehistoric avian assemblages from individual pits at Rancho La Brea, California. Angeles County Mus., Contrib. Sci. 58: 1-24.

Jefferson, G. T. 1991. A catalogue of Late Quaternary vertebrates from California. Part one; nonmarine lower vertebrate and avian taxa. Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County Technical Reports 5:1-60.

Mawby, J. E. 1967. Fossil vertebrates of the Tule Springs site, Nevada. Nevada State Museum, Anthropological Papers 13:106-128.

McCoy, John J. (1963). The fossil avifauna of Itchtucknee River, Florida. The Auk 80(3): 335-351.

Rea, A. M., and L. L. Hargrave. 1984. The bird bones from Stanton's Cave. Pp. 77-91 in The archaeology, geology, and paleontology of Stanton's Cave; Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona. Grand Canyon Natural History Association Monograph 6.

Springer, Kathleen B., Pigati, Jeffrey S. and Scott, Eric. (2017). Vertebrate Paleontology, Stratigraphy, and Paleohydrology of Tule Springs Fossil Beds National Monument, Nevada (USA). Geology of the Intermountain West 4: 55-98.

Stock, C., and J. M. Harris. 1992. Rancho la Brea: A record of Pleistocene life in California. Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Science Series no. 37, 7th ed.:i-xiv + 1-113.


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