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Genyornis newtoni Stirling & Zietz, 1896

Genyornis, Mihirung, Newton's large-jawed bird (archaic)

 

 

Taxonomy & Nomenclature

 

 

Conservation Status

Extinct

Last record: 50,000 yBP +/- 5ka

 

Distribution

Australia

 

Biology & Ecology

 

 

Hypodigm

SAM P17044 ("pedal digits")

 

Media

 

 

References

Original scientific description:

Stirling, Edward Charles and Zietz, Amandus Heinrich Christian. (1896). Preliminary notes on Genyornis newtoni; a new genus and species of fossil struthious bird found at Lake Callabonna, South Australia. Transactions and Proceedings and Report of the Royal Society of South Australia 20: 171-190.

 

Other references:

Anderson, C. and Fletcher, H. O. (1934). The Cuddie Springs bone bed. The Australian Museum Magazine 5(5): 152-158.

Angst, Delphine and Buffetaut, Eric. (Due October 2017). Palaeobiology of Extinct Giant Flightless Birds. ISTE Press.

Baird, Robert F. (1985). Avian fossils from Quaternary deposits in "Green Waterhole Cave", south-eastern South Australia. Records of the Australian Museum 37(6): 353-370.

Barker, Bryce et al. (2017). Archaeology of JSARN-124 site 3, central-western Arnhem Land: Determining the age of the so-called 'Genyornis' painting, pp. 423-496. In: David, Bruno et al. (eds.). Terra Australis 47. Acton, A.C.T.: ANU Press. xxvi + 499 pp.

Basedow, H. (1907). Felsgravierungen hohen Alters in Zentral-Australien (translation: "Rock engravings of high ages in central Australia"). Zeitschrift für Ethnologie 39: 707-717. [claimed depiction of Genyornis in rock art]

Bednarik, Robert G. (2013). Myths About Rock Art. Journal of Literature and Art Studies 3(8): 482-500.

Bird, M.I., Turney, C.S.M., Fifield, L.K., Smith, M.A., Miller, G.H., Roberts, R.G., Magee, J.W. (2003). Radiocarbon dating of organic- and carbonate-carbon in Genyornis and Dromaius eggshell using stepped combustion and stepped acidification. Quaternary Science Reviews 22(15-17): 1805-1812.

Chalmin, É., Castets, G., Delannoy, J. J., David, B., Barker, B., Lamb, L., ... and Geneste, J. M. (In Press, 2016). Geochemical analysis of the painted panels at the “Genyornis” rock art site, Arnhem Land, Australia. Quaternary International. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quaint.2016.04.003 [Abstract]

Chan, Nicholas R. (2014). Does size variation in Genyornis newtoni (Aves, Dromornithidae) encompass eggshell safety limits? Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 34(4): 976-979.

Chinsamy, Anusuya and Worthy, Trevor H. (2021). Histovariability and Palaeobiological Implications of the Bone Histology of the Dromornithid, Genyornis newtoni. Diversity 13(5): 219. https://doi.org/10.3390/d13050219

Cobden, Rommy et al. (2017). The identification of extinct megafauna in rock art using geometric morphometrics: A Genyornis newtoni painting in Arnhem Land, northern Australia? Journal of Archaeological Science 87: 95-107. [Abstract]

Coltrain, J. Brenner, Field, J., Cosgrove, R. and O'Connell, J. (2004). Stable isotope and protein analyses of Cuddie Springs Genyornis. Archaeology in Oceania 39(1): 50-51. [Abstract]

Demarchi, Beatrice et al. (2022). Ancient proteins resolve controversy over the identity of Genyornis eggshell. PNAS Preprint e2109326119. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2109326119

Dodson, John et al. (1993). Humans and megafauna in a late Pleistocene environment from Cuddie Springs, north western New South Wales. Archaeology in Oceania 28(2): 94-99.

Field, Judith H. and Boles, Walter E. (1998). Genyornis newtoni and Dromaius novaehollandiae at 30,000 b.p. in central northern New South Wales. Alcheringa 22(2): 177-188.

Field, J. & J. Dodson, 1999. Late Pleistocene megafauna and archaeology from Cuddie Springs, southeastern Australia. Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society 65, 275–301.

Fillios, M., Field, Judith and Charles, B. (2010). Investigating human and megafauna co-occurrence in Australian prehistory: Mode and causality in fossil accumulations at Cuddie Springs. Quaternary International 211(1-2): 123-143.

Flannery, T., 1999. Debating extinction. Science 283, 182-183.

Furby, J. (1995). Megafauna Under the Microscope: Archaeology and Palaeoenvironment at Cuddie Springs. Unpublished Ph.D. thesis, School of Geography, UNSW, Sydney.

Furby, J. and Jones, R. (1994). Cuddie Springs: new light on Pleistocene megafauna. Abstracts of the fourth conference on Australian vertebrate evolution, palaeontology and systematics, Adelaide, 19-21 April, 1993. Records of the South Australian Museum 1994. [Abstract]

Garvey, J., Cochrane, B., Field, J., and Boney, C. (2011). Emu butchery and economic utility: Implications for understanding Australian zooarchaeology and megafauna extinctions. Environmental Archaeology 16(2): 97-112.

Gillespie, R. Horton, D. R., Ladd, P. R., Macumber, P. G., Rich, T. H., Thorne, R. and Wright, R. V. S. (1978). Lancefield Swamp and the extinction of the Australian megafauna. Science 200: 1044-1048.

Grellet-Tinner, Gerald, Spooner, Nigel A., Handley, Warren D. and Worthy, Trevor H. (2017). The Genyornis Egg: Response to Miller et al.'s commentary on Grellet-Tinner et al., 2016. Quaternary Science Reviews 161: 128-133.

Grellet-Tinner, Gerald, Spooner, Nigel A. and Worthy, Trevor H. (2016). Is the “Genyornis” egg of a mihirung or another extinct bird from the Australian dreamtime? Quaternary Science Reviews 133: 147-164.

Gunn, R. G, Douglas, L. C and Whear, R. L. (2011). What bird is that?: identifying a probable painting of Genyornis newtoni in Western Arnhem Land. Australian Archaeology 73: 1-12.

Kaufman, Darrell K. and Miller, Gifford H. (1995). Isoleucine epimerization and amino acid composition in molecular-weight separations of Pleistocene Genyornis eggshell. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 59: 2757-2765. [Abstract]

Long, John et al. (2002). Prehistoric Mammals of Australia and New Guinea, One Hundred Million Years of Evolution. Sydney: University of NSW Press.

Magee, John W. and Miller, Gifford H. (2007). Timing and cause of Genyornis extinction and duration of human-Genyornis overlap in Australia, pp. 31-35. In: Cupper, M.L. and Gallagher S.J. (eds). Climate change or human impact? Australia's megafaunal extinction, Selwyn Symposium of the GSA Victoria Division, September 2007, Geological Society of Australia Extended Abstracts No. 79.

Gifford H. Miller, Marilyn L. Fogel, Magee, John W. and Clarke, Simon J. (2017). The Genyornis egg: A commentary on Grellet-Tinner et al., 2016. Quaternary Science Reviews 161: 123-127. [Abstract]

Gifford H. Miller, Marilyn L. Fogel, John W. Magee, Michael K. Gagan, Simon J. Clarke, Beverly J. Johnson. (2005). Ecosystem Collapse in Pleistocene Australia and a Human Role in Megafaunal Extinction. Science 309: 287-290. [reports of dates of eggshells assigned to Genyornis]

Miller, Gifford H., Hart, Charles P., Magee, John W. and Johnson, Beverly J. (1999). Application of amino acid racemization in avian eggshell to the timing and cause of Late Pleistocene megafaunal extinctions. Abstracts from the 6th CAVEPS, Perth, 7-11 July, 1997. In: Baynes, Alexander and Long, John A. (eds.). Papers in vertebrate palaeontology. Records of the Western Australian Museum Supplement 57: 411.

Miller, G.H., Hart, C.P., Roark, E.B., Johnson, B.J. (2000). Isoleucine epimerization in eggshells of the flightless Australian birds,  Genyornis and  Dromaius. In: Goodfriend, G.A., Collins, M.J., Fogel, M.L.,  Macko, S.A., Wehmiller, J.F. (Eds). Perspectives in Amino Acid and Protein Geochemistry. Oxford University Press, NY, pp. 161-181.

Gifford H. Miller, John W. Magee, Beverly J. Johnson, Marilyn L. Fogel, Nigel A. Spooner, Malcolm T. McCulloch and Linda K. Ayliffe. (1999). Pleistocene Extinction of Genyornis newtoni: Human Impact on Australian Megafauna. Science 283(5399): 205-208.

McInerney, Phoebe L., Arnold, Lee J., Burke, Carey, Camens, Aaron B. and Worthy, Trevor H. (2021). Multiple occurrences of pathologies suggesting a common and severe bone infection in a population of the Australian Pleistocene giant, Genyornis newtoni (Aves, Dromornithidae). Papers on Palaeontology. https://doi.org/10.1002/spp2.1415

Miller, Gifford H. et al. (2016). Human predation contributed to the extinction of the Australian megafaunal bird Genyornis newtoni ~47 ka. Nature Communications 7: 10496.

Murray, P. F. 1991. Chapter 24: The Pleistocene megafauna of Australia. Pp. 1071-1164 in Vickers-Rich, P., Monaghan, J. M., Baird, R. F. and Rich, T. H. (eds) Vertebrate Palaeontology of Australasia. Pioneer Design Studio, Melbourne.

Murray, P. F and Megirian, D. 1998. The skull of dromornithid birds: anatomical evidence for their relationship to Anseriformes. Records of the South Australian Museum 31, 51-97.

Murray, Peter F. and Vickers-Rich, Patricia. (2004). Magnificent Mihirungs: The colossal flightless birds of the Australian Dreamtime. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.

Newsome, Seth D., Miller, Gifford H., Magee, John W. and Fogel, Marilyn L. (2011). Quaternary record of aridity and mean annual precipitation based on δ¹⁵N in ratite and dromornithid eggshells from Lake Eyre, Australia. Oecologia 167(4): 1151-1162. [Abstract]

Nguyen, Jacqueline M. T., Boles, Walter E. and Hand, Suzanne J. (2010). New material of Barawertornis tedfordi, a dromornithid bird from the Oligo-Miocene of Australia, and its phylogenetic implications. In Proceedings of the VII International Meeting of the Society of Avian Paleontology and Evolution, ed. W.E. Boles and T.H. Worthy. Records of the Australian Museum 62(1): 45–60. [comments on the phylogenetic affinities of Genyornis newtoni]

Ouzman, Sven, Taçon, Paul S. C., Mulvaney, Ken and Fullagar, Richard. (2002). Extraordinary Engraved Bird Track from North Australia: Extinct Fauna, Dreaming Being and/or Aesthetic Masterpiece? Cambridge Archaeological Journal 12(1): 103-112.

Price, Gilbert J. (2009). Journey to Horseshoe Bend: In search of the elusive mihirung. The Annual Publication of Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum of Natural History 7: 50-55.

Roberts, Richard G. et al. (2001). New Ages for the Last Australian Megafauna: Continent-Wide Extinction About 46,000 Years Ago. Science 292: 1888-1892.

Roberts, R. G. and Brook, B. W. (2010). And then there were none? Science 327: 420-422. [relevant citation?]

Saltré, Frédérik et al. (In Press, 2015). Uncertainties in dating constrain model choice for inferring extinction time from fossil records. Quaternary Science Reviews. doi:10.1016/j.quascirev.2015.01.022 [Abstract]

Smith, Mike. (2009). Genyornis: Last of the Dromornithids, pp. 147-183. In: Robin, Libby, Heinsohn, Robert and Joseph, Leo. Boom & Bust: Bird Stories for a Dry Country. Collingwood, Victoria: CSIRO Publishing. [Google preview]

Smith, M. A., Miller, G. and van Tets, G. F. (1994). Burnt ratite eggshell from Pleistocene aeolian sediments. Abstracts of the fourth conference on Australian vertebrate evolution, palaeontology and systematics, Adelaide, 19-21 April, 1993. Records of the South Australian Museum 1994. [Abstract]

Stirling, Edward Charles. (1894a). Supposed new extinct Gigantic Bird in Australia. Ibis series (6)6: 328. 

Stirling, Edward Charles. (1894b). The new extinct Gigantic Bird of Australia. Ibis series (6)6: 577-578. 

Stirling, Edward Charles. (1896a). The new extinct Gigantic Bird of Australia. Ibis series (7)2: 430.

Stirling, Edward Charles. (1896b). The newly discovered extinct, gigantic bird of South Australia. Ibis 7(2): 593

Stirling, Edward Charles and Zietz, Amandus Heinrich Christian. (1897 "1896"). Genyornis newtoni—a fossil struthious bird from Lake Callabonna, South Australia. Transactions and Proceedings and Report of the Royal Society of South Australia 20: 191-211. [rubber stamped 'MAR 2 97' on the BHL copy, which I take to be indicative of the publication date]

Stirling, Edward Charles and Zietz, Amandus Heinrich Christian. (1900). Fossil remains of Lake Callabonna. Part II. 1. Genyornis newtoni. A new genus and species of fossil struthious bird. Memoirs of the Royal Society of South Australia 1: 41-80.

Stirling, Edward Charles and Zietz, Amandus Heinrich Christian. (1905). Fossil remains of Lake Callabonna. Part III. Description of the vertebrae of Genyornis newtoni. Memoirs of the Royal Society of South Australia 1: 81–110.

Stirling, Edward Charles and Zietz, Amandus Heinrich Christian. (1913). Fossil remains of Lake Callabonna. Part IV. Description of some further remains of Genyornis newtoni. Memoirs of the Royal Society of South Australia 1: 111-126.

Stirton, R. A. et al. (1961). Cenozoic statigraphy and vertebrate palaeontology of the Tirari Desert, South Australia. Rec. S. Aust. Mus. 14: 19-61.

Taçon, Paul S. C. and Webb, Steve. (2017). Art and megafauna in the Top End of the Northern Territory, Australia: Illusion or reality?, pp. 145-161. In: David, Bruno et al. (eds.). Terra Australis 47. Acton, A.C.T.: ANU Press. xxvi + 499 pp.

Tedford, R. H. (1994). Lake Callabonna: 'Veritable necropolis of gigantic extinct marsupials and birds'. Abstracts of the fourth conference on Australian vertebrate evolution, palaeontology and systematics, Adelaide, 19-21 April, 1993. Records of the South Australian Museum 1994. [Abstract]

Tindale, N. B. (1951). Comments on supposed representations of giant bird tracks at Pimba. Records of the South Australian Museum 9(4): 381-382.

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Van Huet, Sanja. (1999). The taphonomy of the Lancefield swamp megafaunal accumulation, Lancefield, Victoria. In: Baynes, Alexander and Long, John A. (eds.). Papers in vertebrate palaeontology. Records of the Western Australian Museum Supplement 57: 331-340.

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Vickers-Rich, Patricia and Green, R. H. (1974). Footprints of birds at South Mt Cameron, Tasmania. Emu 74: 245-248.

Vickers-Rich, Patricia and Gill, E. (1976). Possible Dromornithid footprints from Pleistocene dune sands of southern Vic

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Vickers-Rich, Patricia. (1980). The Australian Dromornithidae: a group of extinct large ratites. Contrib. Sci. Nat. Hist. Mus. Los Angeles 330: 93-104.

Vickers-Rich, Patricia. (1985). Genyornis newtoni, a Mihirung, pp. 188-194. In: Vickers-Rich, P., Van-Tets, G. F. and Knight, F. (eds.). Kadimakara: Extinct vertebrates of Australia. Victoria, Australia: Pioneer Design Studio.

Vickers-Rich, Patricia. (1987). A giant bird of the Pleistocene: Genyornis newtoni, pp. 48-50. In: Hand, Suzanne and Archer, Michael (eds.). The Antipodean Ark: Creatures from Prehistoric Australia. Sydney: Angus & Robertson.

Vickers-Rich, Patricia. (1991). The Mesozoic and Tertiary History of Birds on the Australian Plate, pp. 721-808. In: Vickers-Rich, Patricia, Monaghan, I. M., Baird, R. P. and Rich, Thomas H. (eds.). Vertebrate Palaeontology of Australasia. Lilydale, Victoria: Pioneer Design Studio. 

Vickers-Rich, Patricia and Gill, E. (1976). Possible dromornithid footprints from Pleistocene dune sands of southern Victoria, Australia. Emu 76(4): 221-223.

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Worthy, Trevor H., Degrange, Federico J., Handley, Warren D. and Lee, Michael S. Y. (2017). The evolution of giant flightless birds and novel phylogenetic relationships for extinct fowl (Aves, Galloanseres). R. Soc. open sci. 4: 170975.

Wroe, Stephen. (1999). The bird from hell? Nature Australia 26: 58-64.

http://extinctanimals.proboards.com/thread/16051/genyornis-newtoni