Modern Birds

Modern birds (subclass Neornithes) are the most recent common ancestor of all living birds (class Aves) and all its descendants.

Modern birds are characterised by feathers, a beak with no teeth (ancient birds had teeth), the laying of hard-shelled eggs, a high metabolic rate, a four-chambered heart, and a lightweight but strong skeleton. All birds have forelimbs modified as wings and most can fly, with some exceptions including ratites, penguins, and a number of diverse endemic island species. Birds also have unique digestive and respiratory systems that are highly adapted for flight. Some birds, especially corvids and parrots, are among the most intelligent animal species; a number of bird species have been observed manufacturing and using tools, and many social species exhibit cultural transmission of knowledge across generations.

Many species of modern bird undertake long distance annual migrations, and many more perform shorter irregular movements. Birds are social; they communicate using visual signals and through calls and songs, and participate in social behaviours including cooperative breeding and hunting, flocking, and mobbing of predators. The vast majority of bird species are socially monogamous, usually for one breeding season at a time, sometimes for years, but rarely for life. Engagement in extra-pair copulations is common in some species; other species have breeding systems that are polygynous ("many females") or, rarely, polyandrous ("many males"). Eggs are usually laid in a nest and incubated by the parents. Most birds have an extended period of parental care after hatching.

Read more about Modern BirdsTaxonomy

Other articles related to "birds, modern birds, modern, modern bird":

... Enantiornithes is an extinct group of primitive birds ... and clawed fingers on each wing, but otherwise looked much like modern birds externally ... Enantiornithine birds went extinct at the Cretaceous–Paleogene boundary, along with hesperornithine birds and all other non-avian dinosaurs, and many other mostly reptilian life forms ...
Ichthyornis - Classification
... Ichthyornis is close to the ancestry of modern birds, the Neornithes, but represents an independent lineage ... seem to be closer to the ancestors of modern birds than to Ichthyornis dispar ... taxonomy as all descendants of the most recent common ancestor of Ichthyornis dispar and modern birds ...
Modern Birds - Taxonomy - Phylogeny
... Basal divergences of modern birds based on the Sibley-Ahlquist taxonomy ... Neornithes Palaeognathae Struthioniformes Tinamiformes Neognathae Neoaves Galloanserae Anseriformes Galliformes ...
Similicaudipteryx - Paleobiology
... They speculated that hatchling Similicaudipteryx would have been covered in natal down like modern birds ... be lost through moulting as the animal aged, and replaced with more modern-style barbed feathers ... In modern birds, new vaned feathers emerge from the feather follicle enclosed in a "pin feather", a solid tube covered in keratin ...
Euenantiornithes - Discovery and Naming
... discovered were incorrectly referred to modern bird groups (Gobipteryx minuta) ... demonstrated that a few previously described birds (e.g ... "Enantiornithes" means "opposite birds", from Ancient Greek einantios (ἐνάντιος) "opposite" + ornithes (όρνιθες) "birds" ...

Famous quotes containing the words birds and/or modern:

    We cannot do without it, and yet we disgrace and vilify the same. It may be compared to a cage, the birds without despair to get in, and those within despair to get out.
    Michel de Montaigne (1533–1592)

    In my experience, if you have to keep the lavatory door shut by extending your left leg, it’s modern architecture.
    Nancy Banks-Smith, British columnist. Guardian (London, February 20, 1979)