European bee-eater Merops apiaster, photographed by Vadim Onishchenko.

Belongs within: Anomalogonatae.
Contains: Alcedines.

The name Coraciiformes is here used for a clade supported by molecular analysis (Hackett et al. 2008) containing the majority of species generally assigned to this order (but excluding the Leptosomidae and Bucerotes). Members of this group are insectivorous or carnivorous birds with syndactyly (fusion) of at least part of the length of the third and fourth toes.

    |  i. s.: Cittura cyanotis R02
    |           |--C. c. cyanotis R02
    |           `--C. c. sanghirensis R02
    |--Alcediniformes [Alcedinides] M04
    |    |--Quasisyndactylus Mayr 1998 M04
    |    |    `--*Q. longibrachis Mayr 1998 M02
    |    `--+--Alcedines M04
    |       `--Meropidae [Meropes, Meropides] M04
    |            |--Nyctiornis Jardine & Selby 1830 [Nyctiornithidae] B94
    |            |--Melittophagus FP64
    |            |    |--M. bullockoides FP64
    |            |    `--M. bulocki A61
    |            `--Merops Linnaeus 1758 M02 (see below for synonymy)
    |                 |--M. aegyptius S66
    |                 |--M. apiaster BF01
    |                 |--M. bullockoides BF01
    |                 |--M. leschenaulti RD02
    |                 |--M. nubicus HK08
    |                 |--M. orientalis S02
    |                 |--M. ornatus WBSJ82
    |                 |--M. persica BF01
    |                 |--M. philippinus VP89
    |                 |--M. pusillus BF01
    |                 |--M. quinticolor W66
    |                 |--M. radoboyensis (Meyer 1865) (see below for synonymy) M02
    |                 |--M. savignyi S66
    |                 |--M. superciliosus S66
    |                 |--M. vaillantii S66
    |                 `--M. viridis EA06
    |                      |--M. v. viridis W66
    |                      `--M. v. ferrugiceps Hodgson 1844 W66
    `--+--Primobucconidae M05
       `--+--Eocoracias Mayr & Mourer-Chauviré 2000 [Eocoraciidae] MM-C00
          |    `--*E. brachyptera Mayr & Mourer-Chauviré 2000 MM-C00
          `--Coracioidea MM-C00
               |--Geranopteridae MM-C00
               |    |--Cryptornis Milne-Edwards 1871 MM-C00, M02
               |    |    `--*C. antiquus (Gervais 1852) [=Centropus antiquus] M02
               |    `--Geranopterus Milne-Edwards 1892 [Geranopteridae] MM-C00
               |         |--*G. alatus Milne-Edwards 1892 M02
               |         |--G. bohemicus (Mlíkovský 1999) [=Nupharanassa bohemica] MM-C00
               |         `--G. milneedwardsi Mayr & Mourer-Chauviré 2000 MM-C00
               `--+--Brachypteraciidae [Brachypteraciinae] MM-C00
                  |    |--Brachypteracias Lafresnaye 1834 MM-C00
                  |    |    `--B. leptosomus MM-C00
                  |    `--+--Uratelornis chimaera MM-C00, FP64
                  |       |--Geobiastes Sharpe 1871 MM-C00
                  |       |    `--G. squamigera [=Brachypteracias squamigera] MM-C00
                  |       `--Atelornis Pucheran 1846 MM-C00, B94 [Atelornithinae]
                  |            |--A. crossleyi MM-C00
                  |            `--A. pittoides FP64
                  `--Coraciidae [Coraciinae] MM-C00
                       |--Coracias Linnaeus 1758 M04
                       |    |--C. abyssinica MM-C00
                       |    |--C. caudata HK08
                       |    |--C. garrulus Linnaeus 1758 M02
                       |    `--C. spatulata Trimen 1880 B95
                       `--Eurystomus Vieillot 1816 [Eurystominae] B94
                            |--E. glaucurus MM-C00
                            |    |--E. g. glaucurus MM-C00
                            |    `--E. g. afer MM-C00
                            |--E. gularis MM-C00
                            |--E. madagascariensis S66
                            |--E. orientalis I92
                            |    |--E. o. orientalis I92
                            |    `--E. o. calonyx Sharpe 1890 I92
                            `--E. pacificus (Latham 1801) R85 [=E. orientalis pacificus HR96]

Merops Linnaeus 1758 M02 [incl. Apiaster Brisson 1760 B94, Melittotheres Boie 1828 B94, Phlotrus Reichenbach 1852 B94; Apiasteridae, Apiastriidae, Melittotheridae, Phlotridae]

Merops radoboyensis (Meyer 1865) [=Fringilla radoboyensis, Batrachites radoboyensis ms, Pelophilus radoboyensis ms] M02

*Type species of generic name indicated


[A61] Austin, O. L., Jr. 1961. Birds of the World: A survey of the twenty-seven orders and one hundred and fifty-five families. Paul Hamlyn: London.

[BF01] Bochkov, A. V., & A. Fain. 2001. Phylogeny and system of the Cheyletidae (Acari: Prostigmata) with special reference to their host-parasite associations. Bulletin de l’Institut Royal des Sciences Naturelles de Belgique Entomologie 71: 5-36.

[B94] Bock, W. J. 1994. History and nomenclature of avian family-group names. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 222: 1-281.

[B93] Brooke, R. K. 1993. Annotated catalogue of the Aves type specimens in the South African Museum. Annals of the South African Museum 102 (10): 327-349.

[EA06] Ericson, P. G. P., C. L. Anderson, T. Britton, A. Elzanowski, U. S. Johansson, M. Källersjö, J. I. Ohlson, T. J. Parsons, D. Zuccon & G. Mayr. 2006. Diversification of Neoaves: integration of molecular sequence data and fossils. Biology Letters 2 (4): 543-547.

[FP64] Fisher, J., & R. T. Peterson. 1964. The World of Birds: A comprehensive guide to general ornithology. Macdonald: London.

[HK08] Hackett, S. J., R. T. Kimball, S. Reddy, R. C. K. Bowie, E. L. Braun, M. J. Braun, J. L. Chojnowski, W. A. Cox, K.-L. Han, J. Harshman, C. J. Huddleston, B. D. Marks, K. J. Miglia, W. S. Moore, F. H. Sheldon, D. W. Steadman, C. C. Witt & T. Yuri. 2008. A phylogenomic study of birds reveals their evolutionary history. Science 320: 1763-1768.

[HR96] Heather, B. D., & H. A. Robertson. 1996. The Field Guide to the Birds of New Zealand. Viking: Auckland.

[I92] Iwahashi, J. (ed.) 1992. Reddo Deeta Animaruzu: a pictorial of Japanese fauna facing extinction. JICC: Tokyo.

[M04] Mayr, G. 2004. New specimens of Hassiavis laticauda (Aves: Cypselomorphae) and Quasisyndactylus longibrachis (Aves: Alcediniformes) from the Middle Eocene of Messel, Germany. Courier Forschungsinstitut Senckenberg 252: 23-28.

[M05] Mayr, G. 2005. The Paleogene fossil record of birds in Europe. Biological Reviews 80: 515-542.

[MM-C00] Mayr, G., & C. Mourer-Chauviré. 2000. Rollers (Aves: Coraciiformes s.s.) from the Middle Eocene of Messel (Germany) and the Upper Eocene of Quercy (France). Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 20 (3): 533-546.

[M02] Mlíkovský, J. 2002. Cenozoic Birds of the World. Part 1: Europe. Ninox Press: Praha.

[R02] Riley, J. 2002. Population sizes and the status of endemic and restricted-range bird species on Sangihe Island, Indonesia. Bird Conservation International 12: 53-78.

[R85] Robertson, C. J. R. (ed.) 1985. Reader’s Digest Complete Book of New Zealand Birds. Reader’s Digest: Sydney.

[RD02] Robin, V. V., & P. Davidar. 2002. The vertical stratification of birds in mixed species flocks at Parambikulam, south India: a comparison between two habitats. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 99 (3): 389-399.

[S66] Schlegel, H. 1866. Communication from, on mammals and birds collected in Madagascar. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1866: 419-426.

[S02] Shivaprakash, A. 2002. Unusual behaviour of purple sunbird Nectarinia asiatica. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 99 (3): 535.

[VP89] Viney, C., & K. Phillipps. 1989. Birds of Hong Kong 5th ed. Government Printer: Hong Kong.

[W66] Walden, A. 1866. Notes on birds collected in Tennasserim and in the Andaman Islands. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1866: 537-556.

[WBSJ82] Wild Bird Society of Japan. 1982. A Field Guide to the Birds of Japan. Kodansha International Ltd.: Tokyo.

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