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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 19.04.21 21:02. Заголовок: Neocene Florida expanded


I live in the southeastern USA (North Carolina to be exact) and I have read the article on Neocene Florida. In the present, Florida has a huge problem with invasive species, such as Burmese Pythons, Nile Monitors and Green Iguanas just to name a few. Despite attempts by the state to exterminate these animals, these creatures seem to be doing quite well, even surviving cold snaps and some scientists believe these invasive species are evolving to deal with the climate of Florida (there are many articles on this, I wasn't able to link them). Since Neocene Florida will be much warmer and wetter than it is today and be covered in Mangrove swamps, I think it is within the realm of possibility that these creatures could survive the human epoch, persevere through the ice age and mass extinction and evolve into new forms that would flourish in the warmer ecosystems of Florida 25 million years in the future. Your thoughts? I'm very interested to hear what some people on this forum think about the potential possibilities that these invasive species could have if they were to survive in Neocene Florida.

Hey btw, Have new organisms, but the website won't let me reply or edit my profile, can somebody help?

But yeah here's some of my ideas:
New World Pythons: Descendants of Burmese Pythons, they are found across the Gulf of Mexico, from Georgia to Mexico and the Caribbean. This genus consists of creatures of various sizes, with the largest reaching 9 meters.

Halpatta: Descendants of the invasive Nile Monitor that have taken the niche of the now extinct American Alligator.

North American Tegus: Descendants of Tegus, which in the present have expanded deep into the Southeast USA. Due to their ability to withstand colder temperatures, they are very widespread, with many diverse forms and lifestyles.

Carp: Introduced as a big game fish, these large fishes would thrive in Neocene North America, due to the climate and abundance of food. I can definitely see some larger forms evolving in the future.

Snakeheads: Another invasive species, snakeheads are a very successful invasive species and their amphibious lifestyle would be ideal for the mangrove swamps.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 29.04.21 21:02. Заголовок: Florida has a lot of..


Florida has a lot of game birds that have been introduced, such as Pheasants. As for species, in the Neocene, Florida would most likely have a great diversity of wading birds, such as cranes or animals that have evolved to take their niche. It is also the only state with flamingos. Grebes, diving birds closely related to ducks, are fairly common today and could diversify in the Neocene.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 29.04.21 21:07. Заголовок: I could also see sub..


I could also see subspecies of the Plesioloon, described in the chapter Atlantic Hawaii having a niche similar to seals.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 30.04.21 04:04. Заголовок: I wonder if due to t..


About the flamingos, perhaps with the climate of Florida becoming more tropical, their range there would expand?
I wonder if due to the Ice Age at the boundary between the Holocene and Neocene, some migratory species would remain in Florida and other Southern regions and suffer speciation there. For exemple the Baltimore oriole (Icterus galbula) having non-migratory descendants endemic to tropical regions, where it wintered in modern times.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 30.04.21 21:38. Заголовок: JOrnitho Neocene Flo..


JOrnitho Neocene Florida bird fauna would definitely have species of both tropical, temperate and migratory origin, especially considering the Ice Age that preceded the era. I'm not really an expert on birds, but it would make sense for tropical species like flamingos to have a presence in the region, barring that they were able to survive the mass extinction (I believe there is a species of Flamingo in Neocene Europe). Also, there are introduced parrots in Florida today.
Also, do you have some ideas for species? I had a few more, but I'm trying to come up with smaller animals.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 30.04.21 22:55. Заголовок: jorzek01 I'm stu..


jorzek01 I'm studying to be an ornithologist, I would be happy to help you with ideas for birds if you need.

I was reading about introduced birds of Florida and I found out that a feral population of red-crowned amazon (Amazona viridigenalis) is growing there. In reality, not only the feral population in Florida, but one living in California too. The article says that there is 3.000 of these birds in California and together with the one in Florida, the number of these birds in the USA will surpass the number of individuals in their original habitat, Mexico. What is interesting, because this bird is considered endangered in its original habitat. So I thought that perhaps descendants of this bird survive in Florida and expand to Great Antigua and return to Mexico. Or remains as a relic species in the subtropical forests of Florida. Another idea that I had was about non-migratory descendants of the Baltimore oriole living in Florida, Mexico and perhaps Great Antigua. Their ancestor fled to Southern regions during the Ice Age, then they evolved there to adapt the tropical climate.

Other exotic animals that I think could have leaved descendants in Florida are the red-whiskered bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus), the coypu (Myocastor coypus), the African giant land snail (Achatina fulica) and the domestic cat. There is also the plants that can leave descendants. For example, I read that in Florida the red-whiskered bulbul feed on fruits and berries of several exotic plants such as the loquat (Eriobotrya japonica), Lantana spp., Brazilian pepper (Schinus terebinthifolius) and figs (Ficus). I think that a descendant of this bird could have evolved together with these plants.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 01.05.21 06:14. Заголовок: Yeah I was actually ..


Yeah I was actually thinking about the Coypu, which have been introduced to Louisiana (which is pretty close). I could see these animals evolving into Capybara sized rodents in the future. I think Tegu lizards will diversify, as the habitat of Neocene North America would be ideal for monitor sized lizards and I've actually come up with a lot of different species of varying sizes. I also think Tegus could evolve to take the niche of the extinct alligators, caimans and crocodiles of the Neocene Americas. These Crocodile-like Tegus are called Halpattas, which is the Seminole Indian word for Alligator. I also think the Iguana has a pretty bright future as well and with the warm climate cold grow to relatively large sizes, similar to the Neocene South American Aquaguana.

Anyways, here are some of my Tegu species from North America:
 Swamp Tegu: A large sized Tegu that favors wetlands and swamps. Length on average is about 1-1.5 meters. The coloration is solid gray. This lizard has a semi-aquatic lifestyle and specializes in hunting aquatic prey, such as fish, frogs, snakes and small mammals. They will also raid nests of Halpatta, birds or pythons. Its range extends from Florida to east Texas, the southern Mississippi basin, east to southern Virginia.
 Seminole Dragon: Largest species, can reach 2.7 meters long or longer. Its range extends from Florida to southern Georgia, west to Louisiana. It is black or dark brown in color, with white spots and a white banded tale. Males have red scales around their lips. This animal lives in a variety of habitats and is an excellent swimmer. It has a build similar to an Asian Water Monitor. It is primarily a predator but will eat fruit and carrion as well.
 Broad Banded Tegu: An arboreal species native to the Gulf Coast and coastal plain, from south Jersey to east Texas. It reaches lengths of between 1-2 meters, with Florida specimens being larger. It has a black body with broad white or green bands. Some individuals have bluish bands. It is omnivorous, but prefers meet, with a taste for bird eggs.
 Green Tree Tegu: Native to Florida, its range encompasses the central and southern parts of the peninsula. This highly arboreal species is about 50 centimeters in length and is green in color. It feeds primarily on insects, eggs and small vertebrates.
 Coconut Tegu: Named for its coloration and diet, being the most herbivorous species described. It has brown scales and a white belly. It averages about 1.5 meters in length and feeds primarily on fruit, vegetation, roots and tubers, but will supplement its diet with insects and crustaceans. It prefers coastlines and wetlands. Range extends from Florida to Cuba and Louisiana.
 Plains Tegu: Native to the plains of central North America, from the southern Mississippi valley to the Mexican Plateau. It is brown in coloration. It is the second largest North American Tegu, with specimens reaching 2.5 meters. The body is streamlined and built similarly to that of a Peretine. It is omnivorous, feeding on anything it can catch.
 Broad Snout Tegu: Native to the plains and plateau. It is two meters long and has a rusty brown complexion. It has a broad snout and long tongue. It specializes in eating eggs, insects and small animals. It has strong claws, allowing it to dig up roots and small animals living underneath the surface.
 Burrowing Tegu: Small species, native to the Mid-Atlantic. Length is about 14 centimeters and scales are black or brown. Species preys on earthworms, insects and small vertebrates.
 Appalachian Tegu: Native to the Appalachian Mountains. It is about half a meter long and has black scales with white spots, which occasionally be blue. It is omnivorous and can eat almost anything.

And then I have the Halpattas (please note that these are now descendants of the Nile Monitor, not the Tegu)
2. Halpattidae: Halpattidae is a genus of Monitor descendants that have taken the niche of aquatic ambush predator, once held by crocodiles and alligators. Halpatta is the Seminole word for Alligator and these animals have many adaptations that make them similar to their present-day analogues: webbed feet, compressed tails, armored skin and peg like teeth. In Florida, two species live: The Northern Halpatta and Caribbean Halpatta.
 Northern Halpatta: Most northern species, ranging from the Chesapeake Bay to south Florida and west to Texas. Males average 4.5 meters in length and can reach up to 5.5 meters. Their skin is black in color, with faint white spots and white bands on the tail. Individuals from the southern parts of their range are larger than those in the north. This species is more cold resistant than Alligators of the Holocene, but their range is limited due to the presence of the Trapperturtle in the western part of their range.
 Caribbean Halpatta: Second largest species, slightly bigger than the Everglades species. Males average 4.7 meters and can reach 6 meters long. Its range extends from the tip of South Florida through the Caribbean Basin to central America and the north coast of South America. Its scales are blueish gray in color and its snout is more streamlined than the Everglades species. It is the most pelagic species, and individuals can be found far out at sea.
 Cuban Halpatta: Native to the freshwater lakes and rivers of Cuba. Its scales are dark brown with a green or blue tinge. Body is about 3.5 meters long, with large males occasionally reaching 4 meters.
 Antiguan Halpatta: Smaller than its Cuban relative, rarely reaching over 3.5 meters. It has a lighter complexion than its relative in Cuba.
 Mesoamerican Halpatta: Native to southern Mexico, this species is medium sized, about 4 meters long and lives in rainforests. It is light brown or green in color.
 Panamanian Halpatta: Lives in Central America and is one of the smaller species. It has a green-brown body with a white belly. Some males have an orange or red tinge to their skin. Length is about 2.5 meters.
Halpattas are very similar to the Aquavaranids of Asia and Africa. The typical Halpatta looks something of a cross between a monitor, alligator and mosasaur. Some species have broad snouts and powerful jaws designed for crushing prey, such as turtles, while others have elongated "mosasaur" type snouts better adapted for catching fish or marine reptiles, mammals and birds. They all have extremely robust necks. Halpattas are descendants of invasive Nile Monitors in North America and first appeared in Florida during the early Neocene, subsequently spreading south into South America via the Caribbean Sea and Antiguan land bridge. In many parts of their range, Halpattas compete with large fish and giant turtles for the position of top predator.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 01.05.21 18:35. Заголовок: jorzek01 пишет: I t..


jorzek01 пишет:

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I think Tegu lizards will diversify, as the habitat of Neocene North America would be ideal for monitor sized lizards and I've actually come up with a lot of different species of varying sizes.


Don't forget other genera of lizards. Anoles, for example, seem to be very ecologically and evolutionally flexible reptiles.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 02.05.21 22:52. Заголовок: jorzek01 пишет: som..


jorzek01 пишет:

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some of my Tegu species from North America


What about a survival of invasive Nile monitor? If these reptiles will survive and evolve, they will compete to tegus.
You show us a whole range of evolutional possibilities reached by tegu descendants. IMHO, this situation is possible only in one case - when tegus have no competitors. In this case a disruptive natural selection takes place, and instead of the only ancestral species we have a spectrum of its descendants each of them having its own special adaptations for survival.
When we have other players, we must take them into account and talk about possible evolution of one species or another in terms of the most probable direcion of evolution in conditions of competing to species of another taxonomical group. So, first of all, we must define the set of initial species to evolve. Then we must define the most probable general directions of their evolution ("branches"), and only after that we can think about the particular species inside these "branches" in order to fill possible ecological niches to avoid competition between them.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 01.05.21 18:08. Заголовок: jorzek01 you asked i..


jorzek01 you asked if I have some ideas for the fauna of Florida , so I had these:

Red-headed parrot: a descendant of the feral populations of red-crowned amazon (Amazona viridigenalis) living in the United States. This bird have 30 cm of lenght from the beak to the tip of the tail feathers. Its wingspan is of 40 cm. The main characteristic of this species in the bright red plumage of their heads. The rest of its plumage is green, with yellow-tipped tails. The red-crowned parrot inhabits the subtropical forests of North America, from the Florida Peninsula to Texas. Some populations of this bird lives in some Caribean Islands.
Purple-faced parrot: another descendant of the feral populations of red-crowned amazon (Amazona viridigenalis) living in the United States. This bird lives in forests and woodlands of Northeastern Mexico. The main characteristic of this species is the bright plumage of its face. Most of body's plumage is green, with yellow-tipped tails. This psittacid also have red plumage in the forehead and crest. This bird have 36 cm of lenght from the beak to the tip of the tail feathers. Its wingspan is of 45 cm.
Antiguan parrot: another descendant of the feral populations of red-crowned amazon (Amazona viridigenalis) living in the United States. Its ancestor reached Great Antigua's lowland tropical forests. This bird have 25 cm of lenght from the beak to the tip of the tail feather. Its wingspan is of 36 cm. The plumage of the body of this species is green, with a yellow tail and red in its forehead and crest.

Another idea:
American golden oriole: this species is a descendant of the Baltimore oriole (Icterus galbula). It became a non-migratory species living in the subtropical forests of North America, from the Florida peninsula to Texas. It have 23 cm of lenght and 30 cm of wingspan, with nales being slightly large than females. This species have sexual dimorphism, with males being bright yellow apart from a black head, back, wings and tail. The females are yellow-brown on the upper parts with darker wings, and dull yellow on the breast and belly.
Black-throated oriole: another descendant of the Baltimore oriole (Icterus galbula). This species lives in the lowland forests of Great Antigua. The male is bright yellow apart from black in the face, throat, wings and tail. The females are yellow-brown on the upper parts with darker wings, and dull yellow on the breast and belly. This species have 20 cm of lenght and 28 cm of wingspan. The males are slightly large than females.
Masked oriole: another descendant of the Baltimore oriole (Icterus galbula). This species lives in the woodlands and forests of North eastern Mexico. The male is bright yellowish orange apart from black plumage around the eyes, wings and tail. The females are yellow-brown on the upper parts with darker wings, and dull orange on the breast and belly. This species have 24 cm of lenght and 32 cm of wingspan. The males are slightly large than females.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 02.05.21 23:18. Заголовок: JOrnitho пишет: red..


JOrnitho пишет:

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red-crowned amazon (Amazona viridigenalis)


Are you sure this large parrot is able to survive in the future? I think any smaller parrot/parakeet species is a more probable candidate to fill this niche.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 04.05.21 19:40. Заголовок: Автор I had actually..


Автор I had actually thought about the Nile Monitor before writing my Tegu idea. I came to the conclusion that, since Tegus are more widespread in NA and are partially endothermic, they were more likely to survive than the Nile Monitor, but I never fully counted out the monitors either, I just couldn't really figure out which species would fill which niche. Tegus have spread farther north, being reported in Georgia and South Carolina, while the monitors are only found in southern Florida (though their population is growing). However, now thinking about it, I could see that the Halpattas would be monitor descendants, since the Nile Monitor is much more adapted to semi-aquatic habitats than the Tegu is. It would be very interesting to see how these two creatures evolve, since they are very similar animals that fill similar niches.
Another reason why I picked Tegus was that they are among the only reptiles, alongside some python species, that can briefly become warm blooded (source:https://science.sciencemag.org/content/151/3711/694,), which occurs during the mating season. I think that both species (pythons and tegus), due to their partial endothermy, would have a better chance of surviving the ice age and could then expand their ranges farther. Then again, this is Florida we are talking about, so Monitors have a great chance of survival due to the climate. Tegus and monitors are both very intelligent, with some reptile owners claiming that their Tegus can be housebroken like dogs can (some owners even take them on walks).
Another thing about endothermy that I wanted to mention is how it evolves. I know this doesn't have much to do with the topic, but some researchers believe that warm bloodedness originally evolved as a mating device, since it would allow animals to become more active and thus more likely to find a mate. Now I'm not saying that Tegus and Pythons will evolve into fully warm blooded creatures like mammals and birds, but the selective pressures of the ice age would naturally favor a partial endotherm over a fully cold blooded animal. Tegus could possibly spread farther north and adapt to more niches in the Americas. But then again, this is just speculation. Ironically, my original idea was that most of these species would be Monitor descendants before I read about the traits possessed by Tegus.
Anyhow, I will definitely keep working on this species idea, maybe first by coming up with ancestral "missing link species" from the Ice Age and narrowing down the possibilities from there. I would assume Florida's climate in the Ice Age would be similar to that of Pleistocene Florida, being cooler and drier than today. Also, putting aside which species came from where, do you personally think that the diversification of large predatory lizards in the Americas is a good idea? What do you think I should change to in order to improve these species?

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 03.05.21 02:37. Заголовок: Автор пишет: Are y..


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Are you sure this large parrot is able to survive in the future?

Well this species have a large feral population in the United States and is growing, while the populations in its original habitat in declining. However, most of this population (aprox. 3.000) lives in California.
Yes, now thinking about that I see that for the birds that I suggested a smaller species as ancestor would make more sense. So my ideas for the possible ancestors of these parrots:
1-The nanday parakeet (Aratinga nenday), which from what I read have feral populations in California, Texas and Florida.
2-These birds are the result of inter-specific hybridization between the red masked parakeet (Psittacara erythrogenys) and the mitred parakeet (Psittacara mitratus) . These two were part of the genus Aratinga, until being separated in the new genus Psittacara in 2013.
3-The monk parakeets (Myiopsitta monachus). This species is well established in some regions of the USA, including Florida. It also have the advantage of building its own nest. So its descendants would be birds that fill the niche of large parrots, but are able to build their own nests. Perhaps these parrots no longer nest in large colonies, but each pair build a smaller structure to be their nest, rather than the large "apartment" of their ancestors.

Which one of these birds seems the most plausible ancestor?

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 04.05.21 20:20. Заголовок: JOrnitho Hey I reall..


JOrnitho Hey I really like the ideas! If I had to say which would be the ancestor of your Parrot species, I would guess the Monk Parakeet. This species seems to be the most established in the region and colonies can be found as far north as New York or Wisconsin, with over 150,000-500,000 in Florida alone. I think that due to its range and adaptability it would have the greatest chance of survival, although all of the species mentioned are pretty adaptable and have the potential for survival. I also think building its own nest would give the bird an advantage, allowing it to choose a safer area rather than relying on existing structures.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 05.05.21 02:49. Заголовок: jorzek01 Yes, I thin..


jorzek01 Yes, I think that the monk parakeet would be a better ancestor. Since this species can build nests, there would not have a competition for hollowed trees between its descendants and the other species of psittacid of Neocene North America.
Along these species that I already suggested, I think that there could be a species with more colonial habit of nesting living in the Mexican plateau. These birds would fill the niche of large parrots in these regions.
I don't know if these birds would have representants in regions of more temperate wheater.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 06.05.21 03:10. Заголовок: JOrnitho It's de..


JOrnitho It's definitely possible for these birds to spread to temperate regions. The monk parakeet has managed to form colonies in the northern and northeastern US, in addition to many different areas via introductions. These areas include "several U.S. states and various regions of Europe (namely Spain, Portugal, Azores, Madeira, Balearic Islands, Gibraltar, France, Corsica, Malta, Cyprus, Sardinia, Italy, Greece, Channel Islands, Great Britain, Ireland, and Belgium), as well as in British Columbia, Canada,[15] Brazil, Mexico, Chile, Israel, Bermuda, Bahamas, the United States, Cayman Islands, Puerto Rico, Easter Island, South Korea, Singapore[16] and Japan. " Its native range includes temperate and sub-tropical open woodlands and it is thriving there as well, with the population exploding in Argentina, Uruguay and southern Brazil.
I think another interesting species you should look into is the Rose-ringed Parakeet. This species has also thrived in recent decades and can survive the cold winters of northern Europe. Its native to Africa and west Asia, but has established feral populations across Europe, Asia, North America and even Australia.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 06.05.21 20:32. Заголовок: jorzek01 I was think..


jorzek01 I was thinking that these descendants of the Monk parakeet would be limited to regions where they are able to fill the niche of large parrots and not directly compete with the already existing North American psittacids of the Neocene, which are descendants of the Aratinga (Neoaratinga and close related species). So I think that the monk parakeet's descendants would be more common in Tropical regions, reaching the Caribean Islands, Mexico and the tropical forests South from it. I think that some species could live in California and some temperate areas, but would be rare.
About the Rose-ringed parakeet, the Neocene have two descendants of it ( in reality the result of inter-specific hybridization between this species and the alexandrine parakeet) living in Europe. These two birds migrate to Africa and to the Persian Ridge during the winter. These birds are the roseate parakeet and the red-sided parakeet.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 07.05.21 22:43. Заголовок: What do you think ab..


What do you think about the possibility of the evolution of large macaw-like parakeets in island habitats of Caribbean Sea including Cuba and Great Antigua?

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 08.05.21 02:36. Заголовок: Автор пишет: What d..


Автор пишет:

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What do you think about the possibility of the evolution of large macaw-like parakeets in island habitats of Caribbean Sea including Cuba and Great Antigua?

I think that it can be possible. There is some species of Psittacids that are resilient, being able to survive even in cities. For example, in Rio de Janeiro and nearby cities is possible to see parakeets from the genus Pyrrhura, Aratinga, Diopsittaca, Brotogeris, Myiopsitta, Forpus and more rarely Amazona parrots (Amazona aestiva). I live in São Gonçalo, which is close to the city of Rio de Janeiro, and everyday I see a flock of psittacids (probably Diopsittaca or Aratinga) flying in the evening. In cities, some of these psittacids will use human structures to build nests.
So I think that these species that are more resilient could survive and spread to the Caribean Islands, evolving to macaw-like birds. I think that similar macaw-like birds could also appear in South America, being descendants of the same resilient species. These species could replace the niche of large macaws and parrots by eating hard seeds and nuts.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 08.05.21 16:30. Заголовок: If we propose a way ..


If we propose a way of expanding of terrestrial mammals and reptiles via Caribbean island bridge, we may imagine a chain of related forms stretching from South America to Florida and Gulf of Mexico coast to Yucatan peninsula. Island forms show a high degree of endemism, while continental forms are widespread. For Cuba and Great Antigua we may propose an existance of two ecologically differing forms related to each other - lowland rainforest-dwelling one and highland dry forest dweller. Of course, these pairs wil be different for these two islands. For continental forms we may propose a feeding specialization also: in the same forest area some species may exist side-by-side, consuming different food sources - soft fruits, small dry seeds, large hard nuts - and a generalist near them.

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ссылка на сообщение  Отправлено: 08.05.21 21:15. Заголовок: Автор Perhaps a simi..


Автор Perhaps a similar process could happen with the Caribean pseudo-macaws? The ancestor could have evolved in South America to fill the niche leaved by the extinction of Ara and Anodorhynchus. Some of these descendants would reach Mexico and Florida before the Panama Isthmus was destroyed and from there they would enter the Caribean Islands. In this path, they would leave behind descendants in these regions.
For their feeding specialization, I think that the large species with more strong beaks would feed of hard nuts, palm fruits and coconuts, which is what happens with the large Anodorhynchus macaws. A medium sized and more generalist could have a diet similar to the birds of the genus Ara, eating soft fruits and nuts. While the ones that eat small seeds and fruits could fill the niche of the so called "mini-macaws" of the genus Orthopsittaca and Diopsittaca.
This division give me the idea that perhaps we have two genera of macaw-like birds coming from the same ancestor. One formed by the large and medium sized macaws and other formed by small macaws.
I think that the species in the Caribean Island would be smaller than their continental counterparts, like how the now extinct Cuba red macaw was one of smallest species of the genus Ara.

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