Nikita Zelenkov

Nikita Zelenkov
Russian Academy of Sciences | RAS · Cabineth of Paleornithology

PhD

About

120
Publications
42,947
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883
Citations
Citations since 2017
57 Research Items
657 Citations
2017201820192020202120222023050100150
2017201820192020202120222023050100150
2017201820192020202120222023050100150
2017201820192020202120222023050100150
Additional affiliations
January 2012 - November 2016
Russian Academy of Sciences
Position
  • Head of Department
May 2004 - present
Russian Academy of Sciences
Position
  • Head of Cabineth

Publications

Publications (120)
Article
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We describe a new isolated tarsometatarsus from the Early Cretaceous (Barremian-Aptian) Ilek Formation Shestakovo-3 locality in western Siberia. The new specimen represents a new taxon, Evgenavis nobilis, gen. et sp. nov., significantly increasing the Mesozoic avifauna from Russia. The specimen shares morphologies with a number of basal ornithothor...
Article
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A new relatively large duck, Chenoanas deserta gen. et sp. nov. from the Middle Miocene of the Sharga locality, which is morphologically intermediate between the extant genera Chenonetta and Tachyeres, is described. The diversity of Early and Middle Miocene ducks is discussed. It is noted that some Middle Miocene duck remains are incorrectly referr...
Article
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In recent decades numerous findings, mostly from the Early Cretaceous of China, have changed traditional conceptions about the diversity and evolution of the most ancient Aves. Findings of Mesozoic birds in Russia are extremely rare. Here we describe a new bird from the Lower Cretaceous (Barremian–Aptian, Ilekskaya Svita) Shestakovo-1 locality (sou...
Article
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Medium-sized diving ducks from the Middle Miocene of the Sharga locality (western Mongolia) are described. Sharganetta mongolica gen. et sp. nov. and Nogusunna conflictoides gen. et sp. nov. are evolutionary more advanced than the thoroughly studied Early Miocene genus Mionetta, but more primitive than Anatinae and Oxyurinae. The humeral morphology...
Article
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We describe Holbotia ponomarenkoi gen. et sp. nov., the first articulated specimen of an enantiornithine bird from Mongolia, unearthed in 1977 from Early Cretaceous deposits and formerly thought to be a pterosaur. The specimen shows a series of morphological details that are either unique to the new taxon or very poorly known for Enantiornithes. A...
Article
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The oldest remains of anseriform birds for the Early Pleistocene of the Northern Black Sea region are described based on materials from the Taurida Cave (central part of the Crimean Peninsula, 1.9-1.5 Ma). A fragmentary skeleton of a shelduck (Tadornini) is attributed to the fossil stone shelduck Tadorna petrina Kurochkin, 1985, originally describe...
Chapter
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Группа исследователей из Палеонтологического института им. А.А. Борисяка РАН и Крымского федерального университета описала из недавно открытой в Крыму пещере Таврида кости вымершей в плейстоцене гигантской нелетающей птицы Pachystruthio dmanisensis, превышавшей по весу современного африканского страуса по меньшей мере в три раза.
Article
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The paper considers the main features of the late Miocene faunas of terrestrial vertebrates and marine mammals of Southeastern Europe and their general dynamics in connection with landscape and climatic changes. We note that the geographical area corresponding to the modern northwestern and northern Black Sea region with adjacent territories was a...
Article
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The dynamics of the taxonomic diversity of the birds of Cuba during the Late Pleistocene-Holo-cene is assessed for the first time using material from El Abrón Cave in the western part of the island. The Upper Pleistocene beds of the locality are characterized by a rich taxonomic diversity of birds, including an abundance of waterbirds and open-land...
Article
The Cuban bare-legged owl (Margarobyas lawrencii) is a poorly studied bird of uncertain affinities within Strigidae (true owls). Molecular data indicate that M. lawrencii may be one of the earliest diverging lineages of crown group Strigidae, but the evolutionary history of this taxon remains obscure. Here we describe a fossil species of Margarobya...
Article
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The Eastern Pamir (eastern Tajikistan) is a high-mountain plateau with elevations up to 7000 m, currently characterized by extremely severe environmental conditions and harboring a specialized montane fauna, which in part is shared with that of the Tibetan Plateau. The modern bird fauna of High Asia comprises a diversity of both ancient and recentl...
Article
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The Greater Antilles is one of the most important regions of the Globe in terms of both modern and historical biogeography. The current project is aimed to investigate the late Quaternary history of Cuban vertebrate faunas – one of most striking and often the most vulnerable representatives of modern biodiversity. The recently organized joint Russi...
Article
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New bird taxa are described from the early Eocene Bumban Member of the Tsagaan-Khushuu locality in southern Mongolia. Bumbanortyx transitoria gen. et sp. nov. is a small galliform bird that combines morphological similarity with the fossil families Quercymegapodiidae and Gallinuloididae. The somewhat larger Bumbanipodius magnus gen. et sp. nov. als...
Article
We describe new fossils from the late Eocene of Mongolia, which show that the crane-like Eogruidae and Ergilornithidae are stem group representatives of the Struthioniformes (ostriches). Currently, both taxa are unanimously assigned to the neognathous Gruiformes (cranes and allies). However, ergilornithids show a progressive reduction of the second...
Article
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Bird bones from the Late Pleistocene (31-24 kyr) Ikhine-2 site (Central Yakutia), one of the key Upper Paleolithic sites in northeastern Siberia, have first been studied. This is the northernmost and the oldest bird association in the Pleistocene of Eastern Siberia. Among the bone materials available, the coracoids of the extinct Dyuktai goose (Ans...
Article
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The article presents the first results of a comprehensive study of the new archaeological site Surungur in the Fergana Valley. Interdisciplinary research was conducted in 2018—2019 by an international Russian-Kyrgyz expedition. The direct archeological work at the site was preceded by geophysical surveys, which helped to identify the most promising...
Article
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Remains of the stem anseriforms Presbyornithidae dominate among the avian material from the Tsagaan-Khushu locality in southern Mongolia (Naran-Bulak Formation; upper Paleocene-lower Eocene). Revision of the materials previously attributed to Presbyornis showed that they actually belong to two taxa of Presbyornithidae plus one or two taxa of stem P...
Poster
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El Abrón Cave (22° 40 N, 83° 28 W) is located in the Sierra de la Güira limestone massive, in the western karstic area of the island of Cuba (Pinar del Río Province) (Fig. 1). New excavations in the cave were carried out by researchers of the National Museum of Natural History of Cuba and the Borissiak Paleontological Institute of the Russian Acade...
Article
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A specialized diving lifestyle has repeatedly evolved in several lineages of modern and fossil waterfowl (Anseriformes), with the oldest previously known representative being the late Oligocene Australian oxyurine ducks Pinpanetta. However, diving specializations have never been previously documented for any of the primitive Paleogene anseriforms (...
Article
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New materials on "Rhodospiza" shaamarica Zelenkov et Kurochkin, 2012 from the Upper Pliocene of Shaamar (Northern Mongolia) and Beregovaya (Southern Transbaikalia; Russia) localities are described. It is shown that R. shaamarica should be assigned to the genus Emberiza (Emberizidae): thus, this is the first fossil bunting species found in Asia. The...
Article
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An analysis of the Eurasian Cenozoic (late Eocene-Neogene) fossil record of anatids (Anatidae s. l.; including Romainvilliinae and Dendrocygninae) is presented. The evolutionary origin of Anatidae s. l. may be associated with the appearance of large shallow waterbodies in Asia during the Late Eocene as a result of the fall in the global sea level a...
Article
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Remains of small phasianid birds from several Pliocene and Pleistocene localities in the Northern Black Sea Region and Eastern Europe (Ukraine, Moldova, Poland, Czech Republic, and Hungary) are traditionally , based on similar proportions, assigned to Plioperdix pontica (Tugarinov, 1940). Our study of the bone material from Ukraine has shown that t...
Article
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Todies (Aves: Todidae)-endemic to the Greater Antilles and one of the most characteristic components of the modern fauna of Cuba-have not yet been represented in the island's fossil record. This article describes the first fossil find of a representative of this family in Cuba. A coracoid from the Upper Pleistocene of the cave El Abrón (Pinar-del-R...
Article
Ostriches (Struthionidae) are iconic Old-World giant flightless birds. The two living African species represent only a small part of ancient struthionid diversity, which comprises a number of fossil taxa, including the largest known birds of Northern Hemisphere – Pleistocene giants Pachystruthio. In comparison with most other birds, ostriches have...
Article
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Anatidae s. l.; включая Romainvilliinae и Dendrocygninae) Евразии в Кайнозое (поздний эоцен-неоген). Происхождение Anatidae s. l. может быть связано с появлением обширных мелководий в азиатской части Евразии в позднем эоцене (~41-34 млн лет назад) в результате глобального падения уровня моря и обмеления эпиконтинен-тальных морских бассейнов. В кайн...
Article
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Giant birds, comparable in size to elephant birds and moa, have never been reported from Europe. Here, we describe a femur from the lower Pleistocene of the north Black Sea area (Crimea) that is referred to Pachystruthio dmanisensis, comb. nov., a giant bird with an estimated body mass of about 450 kg. This value makes this extinct bird one of the...
Article
Landfowl (order Galliformes) are among the most characteristic birds of the modern avian faunas, but their early evolutionary history is insufficiently known. The diversity of previously described Eocene galliforms implies a great role of Eocene diversification in the early evolution of this group. However, almost nothing is known about the Eocene...
Article
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A study of the association of vertebrates from the Pleistocene deposits of the Taurida karst cave discovered in 2018 in the central Crimea (Belogorsky district, Zuya village) showed its correlation with the Late Villafranchian faunas of the Eastern Mediterranean and an approximate age of 1.8–1.5 Ma.
Article
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We describe a vertebrate assemblage from the Pleistocene deposits of the Taurida karst cave discovered in 2018 in central Crimea (Zuya village, Belogorsk raion). The assemblage is correlated with Late Vil-lafranchian faunas of the Eastern Mediterranean and has an approximate age of 1.8-1.5 Ma.
Article
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The Las Breas de San Felipe locality in Cuba is one of the few asphalt seeps with numerous remains of the endemic island fauna of the Late Pleistocene and Early — Middle Holocene. Their representatives include extinct ground sloths, relict insectivores, flightless giant owl Ornimegalonyx, and others. Natural asphalt seeps are currently active, prov...
Article
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Postcranial skeletal morphology of the Oligocene-Miocene fossil galliform genus Palaeortyx is compared with modern representatives of Phasianoidea. In particular, Palaeortyx is compared with the modern African Ptilopachus, which was recently transferred to the American family Odontophoridae, to which Palaeortyx was originally assigned. It is shown...
Article
The early evolutionary history of waterfowl (Anseriformes) is poorly understood. Aside from the morphologically aberrant Presbyornithidae, the only other known early Paleogene anseriform taxon is Anatalavis oxfordi from the early Eocene of England. Here, I describe two bones from the late Paleocene of southern Mongolia (localities Naran-Bulag and T...
Article
The significance of osteological collection of the Khotyazhi 1 settlement is due to that it characterizes the economy of the Moscow vicinity (Podmoskovye) early medieval population at the initial stage of the region colonization in the 9th–11th centuries. The obtained results testify to a considerable importance of hunting and the great role of hun...
Article
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The vertebrate fauna from the cave deposits in Imanai Cave in the Southern Urals (53°02′ N, 56°26′E) has been studied. It contains 715 bones that belonged to at least 11 individuals of fossil lion (Panthera (Leo) ex gr. fossilis-spelaea). It has been established that this is one of the largest Eurasian burial sites of fossil lions. The bones were a...
Article
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The fossil avian genus Presbyornis and its relatives (Family Presbyornithidae) are almost universally considered as one of the oldest known filter-feeding specialists among Anseriformes. Such an assumption is based almost entirely on the bill morphology which in Presbyornis is very similar to that of some modern ducks. However, the quadrate bone (k...
Article
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Parrots (order Psittaciformes) are a rather homogeneous group of birds that can be easily distinguished by the notably modified morphology of the skull and hindlimb. Detailed description of the forelimb morphology in these birds has never been provided, though parrots are often used as model objects in flight studies. Parrots are also considered th...
Article
Ugolyakia kaluginae gen. et sp. nov. is described from Ugolyak (Santonian Taimyr amber), based primarily on its unbranched Rs and developed katepisternal sulcus. It is attributed to the tribe Simuliini, although it lacks calcipala and spiniform seta on the costal vein characteristic of most genera of the tribe. Possession of a claw with a large sub...
Article
A notable reorganization of the waterfowl communities apparently took place across Eurasia during the middle to early late Miocene, when primitive and extinct anatid taxa (e.g. Mionetta) were replaced by more derived forms, including extant genera. However, little is known about the diversity of Eurasian waterfowl and their palaeobiogeography durin...
Article
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A new scansorial passerine bird, Kischinskinia scandens gen. et sp. nov., from the uppermost Lower Miocene of the Tagay locality (Olkhon Island, Lake Baikal) is described based on a distal tarsometatarsal fragment. This is the first Asian member of the clade Certhioidea. A tibiotarsal fragment is also tentatively assigned to this taxon. Both bones...
Article
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Late Miocene continental deposits overlying the Khersonian marine sediments near the city of Maikop bordering the Belaya River (North Caucasus) yielded a diverse biotic record including palynology, ostracods, fresh-water and terrestrial molluscs, fishes, amphibians and reptiles, birds, and mammals. The obtained data indicate predominantly wooded la...
Article
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New data on the taxonomic and morphological diversity of Early Cretaceous Enantiornithes are reviewed. A new hypothesis concerning the phylogenetic position of Pengornithidae is proposed. These birds traditionally treated as primitive enantiornithines may in fact be more closely related to Ornithuromorpha. This phylogenetic placement implies that t...
Article
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The first anatomically assembled skeletal remains of Neogene birds in Russia have been found. The head and a fragment of the vertebral column of a duck (Anatidae) and a hind limb of a perching bird (Passeriformes) from the Middle Miocene of the Krasnodar Region (Tsurevsky Formation) comprise the earliest known Miocene birds from European Russia. Th...
Article
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New remains of Hesperornithidae are described from several Late Cretaceous (Campanian) localities of the Lower Volga Region (European Russia). New specimens from Rychkovo and Karaykino localities cannot be referred to as Hesperornis rossicus Nessov et Yarkov, 1993 and likely represent a new undescribed species. Bones from Rychkovo belonged to immat...
Article
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Remains of fishes, turtles, birds, and mammals are described from the Upper Miocene (MN13) Shkodova Gora locality (Ukraine, Odessa Region), the only representative locality of Pontian large vertebrates in the northwestern Black Sea Region. Asiatic fish and avian taxa are recorded for the first time in the Upper Miocene of Europe. The Shkodova Gora...
Article
Ornithuromorph birds (the clade which includes modern avian radiation) first appeared in the Early Cretaceous in Asia and achieved a great diversity during the latest ages of the Late Cretaceous (Campanian and Maastrichtian). The evolutionary history of orithuromorphs during the first 17 MYAs of the Late Cretaceous (Cenomanian to Santonian ages) re...
Article
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A taxonomic revision of Upper Miocene Neoaves from Polgárdi locality is summarized. Rallicrex polgardiensis is transferred to the genus Rallus. The taxonomic position of R. kolozsvarensis is discussed. Porzana estramosi veterior and P. kretzoii are transferred to the genus Zapornia former is ranked as species. It is shown that the material referred...
Chapter
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A revision of the avian fauna from the Rudabànya locality (Hungary, late Miocene) is presented. This is one of the few avian faunas dated to the earliest part of the late Miocene (MN 9), and thus is of major importance for understanding the evolution of birds during the Miocene. The current revision confirms the presence of at least 13 taxa, but on...
Article
The Miocene was an important period for the assembly of present-day avian faunas of the North Temperate Zone. Details of this process, however, remain largely unexplored due to the scarcity of diverse late Miocene avian localities throughout the Eurasian continent. Here, we present a survey of the osteological diversity of extant rails and, based o...
Article
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A complete taxonomic review of Neogene birds of continental Asia is provided. To date, avifauna from the latter half of the Miocene and Pliocene of Central Asia (Mongolia and adjacent regions of Inner Asia) are most thoroughly investigated. Available data enable a reconstruction of successive replacement of Early and Middle Miocene avifaunas by com...
Article
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A taxonomic revision of Galliformes (Aves) from the Upper Miocene of Polgárdi has confirmed the presence of five taxa. A large pheasant originally described as Pavo aesculapi phasianoides Jánossy, 1991 is referred to the genus Syrmaticus as a valid species, S. phasianoides (Jánossy, 1991), comb. nov. Small phasianids are represented in Polgárdi by...
Article
Modern parrots (crown Psittaciformes) are a species-rich group of mostly tropical and subtropical birds with a very limited fossil record. A partial tarsometatarsus from the late Early Miocene of Siberia (Baikal Lake) is the first pre-Quaternary find of crown Psittaciformes in Asia (and Siberia in particular) and is also the northern-most find of t...
Article
Stidham, T.A. & Zelenkov, N.V., September 2016. North American–Asian aquatic bird dispersal in the Miocene: evidence from a new species of diving duck (Anseriformes: Anatidae) from North America (Nevada) with affinities to Mongolian taxa. Alcheringa 41, XXX–XXX. ISSN 0311-5518. Prehistoric intercontinental dispersals are often used to explain the m...
Article
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Polgárdi is a series of Late Miocene localities in central Hungary, which have yielded one of the richest Miocene avifaunas. The taxonomic composition of the waterfowl (Anseriformes) from Polgárdi is revised. As a result of revision, Anas denesi Kessler, 2013 is transferred to the genus Aythya. This species has a combination of primitive and advanc...
Article
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The apparent morphological lacunae dividing the macrotaxa of modern birds (orders of Neornithes) present a serious impediment to the construction of macroevolution models. However, the discovery and detailed investigation of multiple groups of fossil birds in recent decades contributed to the elucidation of the process of the formation of modern hi...
Article
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Presbyornithids were the dominant birds in Palaeogene lacustrine assemblages, especially in the Northern Hemisphere, but are thought to have disappeared worldwide by the mid-Eocene. Now classified within Anseriformes (screamers, ducks, swans and geese), their relationships have long been obscured by their strange wader-like skeletal morphology. Rea...
Article
http://zoobank.org/urn:lsid:zoobank.org:pub:55265D97-F2EF-459D-9728-E4C433DB22F9SUPPLEMENTAL DATA—Supplemental materials are available for this article for free at www.tandfonline.com/UJVPCitation for this article: Zvonok, E. A., N. V. Zelenkov, and I. G. Danilov. 2015. A new unusual waterbird (Aves, ?Suliformes) from the Eocene of Kazakhstan. Jour...
Article
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A small grebe, Miobaptus huzhiricus sp. nov., is described from the uppermost Lower Miocene– lower Middle Miocene of Olkhon Island (Lake Baikal; Tagai locality). This fossil grebe differs from all extant representatives of the family in several morphological features, which indicate a stem position of the genus Miobaptus in the phylogenetic tree of...
Article
A very large alledged bustard, Otis hellenica (Boev et al. in Geol Balc 42:59–64, 2013), described from the Late Miocene of the continental Greece, is reinterpreted here as a member of Ergilornithinae (family Eogruidae), an extinct taxon of large cursorial gruiform birds convergently similar to ostriches. This is the western-most find of Ergilornit...
Article
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Modern orders of Neornithine birds are separated by distinct morphological gaps, hampering the development of particular models. of macroevolutionary transformations. However, recent decades have witnessed the discovery and extensive study of many fossil groups of birds, which shed light on the origin of modern higher taxa. These fossils further al...
Conference Paper
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A review of the fossil record of birds in Asia from the Early Cretaceous to Pleistocene is provided. The main stages of the formation of the modern faunas are outlined. Ornithuromorph birds become a diverse group in the Late Cretaceous, the Paleocene – Oligocene avifaunas of the region comprise mostly representatives of the archaic lineages. Beginn...
Conference Paper
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A brief review of the most commonly used methods in phylogenetics and evolutionary reconstructions is provided. Summaries of logical foundations of each method are given. In this article, I note obvious advantages of the cladistics view upon the biodiversity and discuss merits and demerits of parsimonious and probability approaches in phylogenetics...
Conference Paper
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A review of the modern views on the avian phylogeny and systematics is presented. Detailed accounts for all taxonomic groups are provided. The observed conflicts between molecular, morphological and paleontological data indicate that the current views on the higher-order avian relationships require further modifications.
Article
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A robust quadrate from the Middle Miocene of Mongolia represents a new genus of Ardeidae that combines the similarities to Nycticorax and Tigrisoma, both of which have been recovered in basal positions in recent phylogenies of the Ardeidae, and to cf. Pikaihao from the Middle Miocene of Africa. The confluence of mandibular facets on the medial cond...
Article
The evolutionary history of the extant buttonquails (family Turnicidae) is poorly known. The Oligocene stem representatives of the family differ significantly morphologically from the extant members of Turnicidae and presumably had different ecology and lifestyle. Until now, the only pre-Pleistocene record of the crown-group buttonquails was a find...
Conference Paper
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Transition from late Pleistocene to Holocene dased on faunal remains from Late Paleolithic ans Mesolithic sites of the Gubs Gorge (North-Westren Caucasus)
Article
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Late Pleistocene Dyuktai Cave on the Aldan River, Yakutia, has yielded one of the richest Quater� nary avifaunas of Russia. Waterfowl remains from this locality include bones of a large goose and small smew. The goose is close to the extant Graylag goose (Anser anser), but differs from it in the larger size and some minor morphological features and...
Article
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The preliminary investigation of mammal remains from new localities at the Fortep’yanka River allows the following conclusions to be drawn. Their comparative analysis revealed the similarity of Adygeya Hipparion representatives to Siwalik species described from the Siwalik Chinji and Nagri zones; their Vallesian–early Turolian age is highly probabl...