Megapodius alimentum Steadman, 1989

Consumed scrubfowl, Consumed megapode, Tonga megapode



Taxonomy & Nomenclature

The tarsometatarsus of Megapodius alimentum were redescribed by (Worthy, 2000:341-342).


Conservation Status


Last record: Late Quaternary



Tonga; Lakeba and Mago, Lau Group, Fiji


Biology & Ecology










Original scientific description:

Steadman, David W. (1989). New species and records of birds (Aves: Megapodiidae, Columbidae) from an archaeological site on Lifuka, Tonga. Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 102: 537-552.


Other references:

Franklin, Janet and Steadman, David W. (2008). Prehistoric species richness of birds on oceanic islands. Oikos 117: 1885-1891. [Abstract]

Hume, Julian Pender and Walters, Michael. (2012). Extinct Birds. London: T & AD Poyser. 544 pp.

Sayol, Ferran, Steinbauer, Manuel J., Blackburn, Tim M., Antonelli, Alexandre and Faurby, Søren. (2020). Anthropogenic extinctions conceal widespread evolution of flightlessness in birds. Science Advances 6(49): eabb6095. [Supplementary Material (Data File S1)]

Steadman, David W. (1993). Biogeography of Tongan birds before and after human impact. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 90(3): 818-822.

Steadman, David W. (1995). Prehistoric Extinctions of Pacific Island Birds: Biodiversity Meets Zooarchaeology. Science 267(5201): 1123-1131.

Steadman, David W. (1999). The biogeography and extinction of megapodes in Oceania. Proceedings Third International Megapode Symposium. Zool. Verh. Leiden 327: 7-21.

Steadman, David W. (2006). Extinction and Biogeography in tropical Pacific birds. Chicago & London: University of Chicago Press.

Steadman, D.W., A. Plourde & D.V. Burley. (2002). Prehistoric butchery and consumption of birds in the Kingdom of Tonga. Journal of Archaeological Science 29: 571-584.

Steadman, David W., Pregill, Gregory K. and Burley, David V. (2002). Rapid prehistoric extinction of iguanas and birds in Polynesia. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 99(6): 3673-3677.

Tyrberg, Tommy. (2009). Holocene avian extinctions, pp. 63-106. In: Turvey, Samuel T. (ed.). Holocene Extinctions. Oxford, UK & New York, USA: Oxford University Press. xii + 352 pp.

Worthy, Trevor H. (2000). The fossil megapodes (Aves: Megapodiidae) of Fiji with descriptions of a new genus and two new species. Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand 30(4): 337-364.

Worthy, Trevor H. and Burley, David V. (2019). Prehistoric avifaunas from the Kingdom of Tonga. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, zlz110, [Abstract]

Worthy, Trevor H. and Clark, Geoffrey. (2009). Bird, mammal and reptile remains, pp. 231-258. In: Clark, Geoffrey and Anderson, Atholl (eds.). Terra Australis 31: The Early Prehistory of Fiji. Canberra: ANU Press.


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