Hoatzin Opisthocomus hoazin, copyright Francesco Veronesi.

Belongs within: Ornithurae.
Contains: Pelagornithidae, Galloanseres, Strisores, Columbaves, Gruiformes, Aequorlitornithes, Telluraves.

The Neognathae are one of the primary clades of living birds, excluding only the ratites and tinamous. Members of the clade are characterised by an intrapterygoidal joint allowing greater mobility of the palate, as well as by a conjoint auditory tube and caudally closed ilioischiadic foramina in the pelvis (Mayr 2009). Within the Neognathae, most recent studies agree on a basal division between the galloanserines (gamefowl and waterfowl) and remaining species in the clade Neoaves. Basal relationships within the Neoaves remain highly contentious, with many large-scale analyses differing significantly in their results; some authors have even suggested that the base of Neoaves may be an insoluble hard polytomy. Particularly contentious has been the position of the hoatzin Opisthocomus hoazin, a medium-sized folivorous bird found in the Amazon basin.

Neognathae [Amblypterae, Ciconii, Insessores, Odontoanserae, Pullastrae] HK08
    |--+--Pelagornithidae M11
    |  `--Galloanseres PB15
    `--Neoaves (see below for synonymy) HK08
         |  i. s.: Protopelicanus Reichenbach 1852 M05, M02
         |           `--*P. cuvieri Reichenbach 1852 M02
         |         Onychopteryx [Onychopterygidae] M09
         |           `--O. simpsoni Cracraft 1971 M09
         |--Strisores PB15
         `--+--Columbaves PB15
            `--+--Gruiformes PB15
               `--+--Aequorlitornithes PB15
                  `--Inopinaves PB15
                       |--Telluraves PB15
                       `--Opisthocomidae [Opisthocomi, Opisthocomiformes] JM14
                            |--Hoazinoides magdalenae Miller 1953 U93
                            |--Hoazinavis lacustris JM14
                            `--Opisthocomus Illiger 1811 PB15, B94
                                 `--O. hoazin (Müller 1776) ME04

Inorganic: Opisthocomidus opisthocomidus minilorientalus Okamura 1987 O87

Neoaves [Anomalogonates, Charadriimorphae, Ciconiae, Ciconiiformes, Ciconiimorphae, Ciconioidea, Coccyges, Columbea, Coronaves, Cuculimorphae, Cursorimorphae, Dendrornithes, Eurypygoidea, Gaviae, Gavii, Gaviomorphae, Grallae, Impennes, Incessores, Longipennes, Metaves, Oxypterae, Paludicolae, Passerea, Passeres, Pelecani, Picae, Plethornithes, Psittacimorphae, Pygopodes, Pygopodotubinares, Ralliformes, Simplicirostres, Terrestrornithes, Turniciformes] HK08

*Type species of generic name indicated


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

[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.

[JM14] Jarvis, E. D., S. Mirarab, A. J. Aberer, B. Li, P. Houde, C. Li, S. Y. W. Ho, B. C. Faircloth, B. Nabholz, J. T. Howard, A. Suh, C. C. Weber, R. R. de Fonseca, J. Li, F. Zhang, H. Li, L. Zhou, N. Narula, L. Liu, G. Ganapathy, B. Boussau, M. S. Bayzid, V. Zavidovych, S. Subramanian, T. Gabaldón, S. Capella-Gutiérrez, J. Huerta-Cepas, B. Rekepalli, K. Munch, M. Schierup, B. Lindow, W. C. Warren, D. Ray, R. E. Green, M. W. Bruford, X. Zhan, A. Dixon, S. Li, N. Li, Y. Huang, E. P. Derryberry, M. F. Bertelsen, F. H. Sheldon, R. T. Brumfield, C. V. Mello, P. V. Lovell, M. Wirthlin, M. P. Cruz Schneider, F. Prosdocimi, J. A. Samaniego, A. M. Vargas Velazquez, A. Alfaro-Núñez, P. F. Campos, B. Petersen, T. Sitcheritz-Ponten, A. Pas, T. Bailey, P. Scofield, M. Bunce, D. M. Lambert, Q. Zhou, P. Perelman, A. C. Driskell, B. Shapiro, Z. Xiong, Y. Zeng, S. Liu, Z. Li, B. Liu, K. Wu, J. Xiao, X. Yinqi, Q. Zheng, Y. Zhang, H. Yang, J. Wang, L. Smeds, F. E. Rheindt, M. Braun, J. Fjeldså, L. Orlando, F. K. Barker, K. A. Jønsson, W. Johnson, K.-P. Koepfli, S. O'Brien, D. Haussler, O. A. Ryder, C. Rahbek, E. Willerslev, G. R. Graves, T. C. Glenn, J. McCormack, D. Burt, H. Ellegren, P. Alström, S. V. Edwards, A. Stamatakis, D. P. Mindell, J. Cracraft, E. L. Braun, T. Warnow, W. Jun, M. T. P. Gilbert & G. Zhang. 2014. Whole-genome analyses resolve early branches in the tree of life of modern birds. Science 346 (6215): 1320–1331.

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

[M09] Mayr, G. 2009. Paleogene Fossil Birds. Springer.

[M11] Mayr, G. 2011. Cenozoic mystery birds—on the phylogenetic affinities of the bony-toothed birds (Pelagornithidae). Zoologica Scripta 40: 448–467.

[ME04] Mayr, G., & P. G. P. Ericson. 2004. Evidence for a sister group relationship between the Madagascan mesites (Mesitornithidae) and the cuckoos (Cuculidae). Senckenbergiana Biologica 84 (1–2): 1–17.

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

[O87] Okamura, C. 1987. New facts: Homo and all Vertebrata were born simultaneously in the former Paleozoic in Japan. Original Report of the Okamura Fossil Laboratory 15: 347–573.

[PB15] Prum, R. O., J. S. Berv, A. Dornburg, D. J. Field, J. P. Townsend, E. M. Lemmon & A. R. Lemmon. 2015. A comprehensive phylogeny of birds (Aves) using targeted next-generation DNA sequencing. Nature 526: 569–573.

[U93] Unwin, D. M. 1993. Aves. In: Benton, M. J. (ed.) The Fossil Record 2 pp. 717–737. Chapman & Hall: London.

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