Megapodius molistructor Balouet & Olson, 1989

Pile-builder megapode



Taxonomy & Nomenclature

Anderson's megapode

A hypothetical species based upon the very brief description given by Anderson (unpublished MS), it may be synonymous with either this taxon or M. sp. nov. 'New Caledonia'.


Conservation Status


Last record: subfossil remains



New Caledonia & Tonga


Biology & Ecology




Holotype: NCP 600

Type locality: "Pindai Cave, Nepoui Peninsula, west coast of New Caledonia; 21° 20'S, 164°57'E."


Paratypes (Pindai cave):

NCP 601

NCP 602

NCP 603

NCP 604

NCP 605


Paratypes (Kanumera):

NCK 600

NCK 601

NCK 602

NCK 603

NCK 604

NCK 605

NCK 606

NCK 607

NCK 608


Anderson et. al. (2010) reported a further single coracoid from Pindai in addition to the material first reported when (Baleout & Olson, 1989) described the species.






Original scientific description:

Balouet, Jean Christophe and Olson, Storrs L. (1989). Fossil Birds from Late Quaternary Deposits in New Caledonia. Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology 469: 1-38, 16 figures, 13 tables.


Other references:

Anderson, Atholl, Sand, Christophe, Petchey, Fiona and Worthy, Trevor H. (2010). Faunal Extinction and Human Habitation in New Caledonia: Initial Results and Implications of New Research at the Pindai Caves. Journal of Pacific Archaeology 1(1): 89-109.

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

Steadman DW (2006) Extinction and Biogeography of Tropical Paci; c Birds. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

Steadman, David W., Pregill, Gregory K. and Burley, David V. (2002). Rapid prehistoric extinction of iguanas and birds in Polynesia. PNAS 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.


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