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What do we know about these giant eagles found in Australia?

A team of paleontologists has announced that they have identified the remains of an ancient species of vulture that once flew in Australia. Based on analysis of their fossils, these raptors may have been heavy and powerful enough to take down large prey. Details of the study have been published Journal of Ornithology.

A new species, named Dynatoaetus gaffae (or the mighty Coffs eagle), described between 1959 and 2021 from fossils discovered in a seventeen-meter-deep cave in the state of South Australia. The bones, which include wings, legs, shafts, a breastbone, and a skull, suggest that the raptor may have scaled shafts. Thirty centimeters long And about a wingspan Three metersI am doing Largest bird of prey ever recorded in Australian territory.

50,000 to 700,000 years ago, it was probably the largest eagle on the planet.“, says paleontologist Trevor Worthy of Flinders University in Australia.

At that time, Australia was populated by other large species, including giant kangaroos (Procoptodon sp.), massive monitor lizards (Varanus priscus) and bear-like marsupials (Diprotodon optatum) researchers assume T. Cafe These different giants may have attacked juveniles or sick individuals of the species.

Further, T. Cafe It has a body shape similar to that of living vultures of the genus Spilornis. There are currently six species in Asia. The largest of these, the Philippine eagle (Pithecophaga Jefferi), known to feed on monkeys and lemons, as well as pigs and young deer.

Dynatoaetus gaffae had a similar body shape to the Philippine resident vulture (Pithecophaga jefferyi). Thanks: Shemlongakit

Only two extinct eagle species are larger T. Cafe : Gigantohyrax suresiIt hunted giant rodents in Cuba and Hast’s eagle.

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This ancient extinct giant captured and stabbed its living victims with its sharp beaks and beaks at the level of present-day New Zealand, before plunging its mouth into the carcass as modern vultures might do. Its size was proportional to its main prey, mo. Also note that both species became extinct at the same time due to human poaching in the 15th century

Finally, remember that T. Cafe It’s not the only ancient eagle to be found in Australia in recent years. Two years ago, a group of paleontologists actually existed Identified The remains of one of the oldest eagle species in history. The animal, named Archaehierax sylvestris, evolved around 25 million years And can feed the big koalas.