Diatryma


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Di`a`try´ma


n.1.(Paleon.) An extinct eocene bird from New Mexico, larger than the ostrich.
References in periodicals archive ?
London, November 24 ( ANI ): Footprints believed to have been made by the giant bird Diatryma, an extinct flightless bird, indicate that it was a "gentle herbivore" rather than a fierce carnivore, researchers say.
A team of researchers from Washington, US, examined tracks uncovered in a landslide in 2009 and the absence of raptor-like claws in the footprints supports the theory that Diatryma was not a meat-eater.
The team concluded that the multiple, well-preserved tracks were most likely to have been made by Diatryma.
An intriguing aberration occurs in South America, where the main Paleocene predators were a startling assemblage of boid snakes (up to 10 m long), flightless phorusrhacoid birds (up to 3 m tall), and terrestrial crocodilians (Albino 1993); Eocene predators in North America also included large flightless birds (e.g., Diatryma) and terrestrial crocodiles.
Called Diatryma, this fowl has long puzzled paleontologists, who wonder in particular what such a large, heavy bird ate for dinner.
Geological Survey in Denver, performed a biochemical analysis of the Diatryma jaw, focusing on a recently discovered lower jaw found in the Bighorn Basin of northwest Wyoming.