William Suárez's research while affiliated with Smithsonian Institution and other places

Publications (25)

Article
A revision of large extinct members of Strigidae described from Quaternary cave deposits in Cuba here reduces the number of valid taxa from five to three. Ornimegalonyx oteroiArredondo, 1958a, is the only valid species of the four previously described in the genus. The type series of Bubo osvaldoiArredondo & Olson, 1994, is revealed to be a composi...
Article
Full-text available
A new small fossil species of vulture from Quaternary asphalt and cave deposits in western Cuba is described herein. Some specimens of this taxon are the smallest known in the genus Cathartes, including the modern Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture C. burrovianus. The extinction of the Cuban megafauna, coupled with the loss of open habitats once dominate...
Article
After reviewing the systematics and distribution of the living and fossil small West Indian taxa of Tytonidae (Tyto), we reached the following conclusions: (1) Strix tuidara J. E. Gray, 1827, type locality of Brazil, is the earliest available and correct name to be used in a binomen for New World mainland barn owls; (2) the North American mainland...
Article
The Cuban fossil avifauna, prior to this study, included 30 extinct and extirpated valid taxa. In the present contribution, we review the fossil avifauna from Las Breas de San Felipe, and in so doing increase the diversity of Cuban fossil birds to 36 species with the description of a New World vulture, Coragyps seductus sp. nov., three accipitrids,...
Article
After reviewing the systematics and distribution of the extinct West Indian taxa of Tytonidae (Tyto) larger than the living barn owl Tyto alba (Scopoli), we reached the following conclusions: (1) the species T. ostologa Wetmore (1922) is the only giant barn owl known so far from Hispaniola; (2) T. pollens Wetmore (1937) was a somewhat larger and ev...
Article
A new species of small crested caracara, Caracara seymouri, from Quaternary asphalt deposits of the Talara Tar Seeps, northwestern Peru, is described from most major elements of the skeleton. Specimens reported in the literature from late Pleistocene deposits at La Carolina, Ecuador, are referred to the same species. These fossils had previously be...
Article
El águila fósil Aquila borrasi Arredondo, del Cuaternario de Cuba, es redescrita y transferida al género Buteogallus Lesson. Esta especie representa una versión agigantada (33% mayor) de la morfología presente en el taxón viviente B. urubitinga (Gmelin). Buteogallus borrasi difiere de los grandes gavilanes fósiles registrados en Las Antillas (Ampli...
Article
Study of the type series and much new fossil material of the Cuban teratorn, Teratornis olsoni Arredondo & Arredondo, shows that this species possessed unique characters within the family Teratornithidae, including a shorter and more flattened humerus and femur, and a tarsometatarsus with a long trochlea II. The differences are so great as to merit...
Article
Storks were previously known in Cuba only from the living Wood Stork (Mycteria americana) and two bones of the extinct species Ciconia maltha from Cienfuegos Province. Newly explored Quaternary tar seep deposits in Matanzas Province have yielded fossils of M. americana, the extinct wood stork M. wetmorei, and an unidentified species of Ciconia smal...
Article
The two species of Antillean "screech" owls, notable for having unfeathered tarsi and lacking erectile "ear" tufts, have a rather complicated early history because specimens were at first very rare in collections so that for a long time no investigator was able to compare the two side by side. The first to be described was Strix nudipes Daudin (180...
Article
A cranium of the extinct Cuban Macaw Ara tricolor from a Quaternary sinkhole in Villa Clara Province, Cuba, is the third paleontological record for the species in Cuba or for any macaw in the West Indies. The specimen also constitutes the northern and easternmost proven occurrence of the species and adds further information bearing on the osteology...
Article
The Cuban subspecies of vampire bat, Desmodus rotundus puntajudensis Woloszyn and Mayo, is redescribed and raised to the specific rank. Desmodus puntajudensis shares some cranial characters with two extinct species of vampire bats from North America, D. stocki and D. archaeodaptes. Characters that distinguish the Cuban species are skull with globos...
Article
One partial skeleton recorded as Amplibuteo sp., from a Quaternary cave deposit at Cueva de Sandoval, La Habana, Cuba, is identified as Amplibuteo woodwardi (L. Miller), previously known from North America (California and Florida). This is the first record of this species in the West Indies. It is the fourth large, extinct, buteonine hawk known at...
Article
The enigmatic fossil snipe Capella sp., previously known in the Greater Antilles by specimens recovered from the Bahamas and Cayman Islands, is recorded from three Quaternary cave deposits in western and central Cuba. This new material provides information about the paleoecology and ancient distribution of this taxon in the West Indies.
Article
An extinct caracara, Milvago carbo, new species, is described from Quaternary asphalt deposits of Las Breas de San Felipe, northern Matanzas Province, Cuba, from tarsometatarsi, tibiotarsi, and a notarium. This species was much larger than other species of the genus, living or extinct. New material of the extinct species Caracara creightoni provide...
Article
New material of the Cuban Condor, originally described at Antillovultur varonai (Arredondo, 1971), indicates that it is definitely referable to the genus Gymnogyps, but possesses other unique features that support its status as an extinct endemic species. It is characterized by distinct cranial and pre-maxillary features that are associated with mo...
Article
Storks were previously known in Cuba only from the living Wood Stork (Mycteria americana) and two bones of the extinct species Ciconia maltha from Cienfuegos Province. Newly explored Quaternary tar seep deposits in Matanzas Province have yielded fossils of M. americana, the extinct wood stork M. wetmorei, and an unidentified species of Ciconia smal...
Article
A new species of phyllostomid bat (Stenodermatinae: Stenodermatini) is described from a well preserved skull and two mandibular rami from a late Pleistocene cave deposit (derived from barn owl predation, Aves: Tyto) in Cueva El Abron, Pinar del Rõ ´o, western Cuba. This new taxon is the second fossil species described in the genus Phyllops, and it...
Article
An enigmatic small falcon. Falco kurochkini, new species, is de- scribed from postcranial bones from several Quaternary sites in western and central Cuba. It was approximately intermediate in size between F. sparverius and F. columbarius but had proportionately longer and more slender leg ele- ments than any living species of Falco. It is hypothesi...
Article
Caracara creightoni, previously known from three fragmentary fossils from New Providence Island, Bahamas, is here documented from two Quaternary sites in Cuba. It appears to have been a smaller species than C. cheriway, but with a more robust bill and quadrate and other cranial differences, relatively shorter wings, and more robust hindlimb element...
Article
The Cuban Condor, Antillovultur varonai Arredondo, was described on the basis of fragments of four specimens from Cueva de Paredones, La Habana. Further study suggests that the species should be placed in the genus Gymnogyps Lesson, based on similarities with published illustrations. Some authors, contrarily, have continued to recognize Antillovult...
Article
The Northern Potoo (Nyctibius jamaicensis) is reported for the first time from Cuba, based on vocali-zations, sightings, and feathers from the Ciénaga de Zapata (Matanzas province) and Sierra de Anafe (La Habana province). In the West Indies, N. jamaicensis has been reported only from Hispaniola (including Île de la Gonâve) and Jamaica. Resumen.—UN...

Citations

... The Caribbean was once home to a significant number of nocturnal raptors (e.g., Suárez 2020a, 2020b, Jiménez and Orihuela 2021; however, exactly how many of these bird species existed remains difficult to estimate accurately due to the scattered and fragmented nature of the region's paleontological record (e.g., Orihuela 2019). A recent revision of Caribbean specimens nevertheless identified at least four giant (Suárez and Olson 2015) and one small form (Suárez and Olson 2020) of tytonid owl (genus Tyto). ...
... The Caribbean was once home to a significant number of nocturnal raptors (e.g., Suárez 2020a, 2020b, Jiménez and Orihuela 2021; however, exactly how many of these bird species existed remains difficult to estimate accurately due to the scattered and fragmented nature of the region's paleontological record (e.g., Orihuela 2019). A recent revision of Caribbean specimens nevertheless identified at least four giant (Suárez and Olson 2015) and one small form (Suárez and Olson 2020) of tytonid owl (genus Tyto). The past presence of giant tytonid owls in the Caribbean is limited to the Greater Antilles and the Bahamas, with the only exception being fossil specimens originally described as Tyto neddi from a cave deposit on Barbuda (Steadman and Hilgartner 1999). ...
... The Caribbean was once home to a significant number of nocturnal raptors (e.g., Suárez 2020a, 2020b, Jiménez and Orihuela 2021; however, exactly how many of these bird species existed remains difficult to estimate accurately due to the scattered and fragmented nature of the region's paleontological record (e.g., Orihuela 2019). A recent revision of Caribbean specimens nevertheless identified at least four giant (Suárez and Olson 2015) and one small form (Suárez and Olson 2020) of tytonid owl (genus Tyto). ...
... Gallinago kakuki, caracara Caracara creightoni, and owl T. pollens, were described from Bahamian fossils and then found to have lived on Cuba as well (22)(23)(24). The strong Cuban affinities of the Bahamian biota are not confined to vertebrates. ...
... To date, only layer VII (0.80-1.72 m) has a radiocarbon date, of 17406± 161 14C BP (20 050-21 474 cal BP), obtained using the bone material of an extinct barn owl (Tyto noeli) (Suárez and Díaz-Franco 2003). Data on the geology of El Abrón Cave along with some of the mammal, bird, and some squamate remains from this locality have been partly published (Díaz-Franco 2001;2002;Suárez and Díaz-Franco 2003;Suárez 2004aSuárez , 2004bOrihuela 2019;Syromyatnikova et al. 2020Syromyatnikova et al. , 2021Zelenkov and Gonzalez 2020;Lopatin 2021aLopatin , 2021bZelenkov and Belichenko 2022). The diploglossid material was collected in 2019 by members of the Department of Palaeogeography and Palaeobiology of the Museo Nacional de Historia Natural de Cuba (Havana, Cuba) and the Palaeontological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Moscow, Russia). ...
... O.oteroi) [4,[7][8][9][10][11][12]. Найдены и несколько современных видов: американский клювач (Mycteria americana), красноплечий канюк (Buteo lineatus), южномексиканский сокол (Falco femoralis), кубинский ворон (Corvus nasicus) [4,7,13]. ...
... The asphalt seeps of Las Breas de San Felipe are the only known productive fossil tar seeps in the Greater Antilles and contain two productive fossil sub-localities, San Felipe I and San Felipe II, respectively (for a detailed description see Iturralde-Vinent et al. 2000, and for the fossil avifauna present there, see Suárez 2020). This is the type locality of Cuban Caracara Milvago carbo Suárez & Olson, 2003, and some other Cuban extinct raptors (Suárez 2020). ...
... Cuban scavengers (see Hertel 1992Hertel , 1994Hertel , 1995 were highly specialised, evolving in the complete absence of carnivorous mammals (Arredondo 1976, Silva et al. 2007, and becoming extinct during the Holocene. Emslie's Vulture (Fig. 4) appears to be derived from a Central American ancestor (probably one related to the smaller living species C. burrovianus) rather than from North America, unlike the two other extinct Cuban taxa in the genera Coragyps and Gymnogyps (Suárez & Emslie 2003, Suárez 2020. Skulls with massive and large bills, compared to continental congeners, are common adaptations in Cuban carrion-eaters (Suárez & Olson 2001b, Suárez & Emslie 2003. ...
... En esta nota se describe un extremo distal de tarsometatarso asignable a la extinta Ciconia maltha Miller, 1910, de tamaño mayor a la viviente Ciconia maguari Gmelin, 1789, especie que se distribuye ampliamente en América. C. maltha ha sido abundantemente registrada en el Pleistoceno Medio y Superior de Norteamérica (Feduccia, 1967;Emslie, 1995) y en el Pleistoceno superior de Cuba (Arredondo, 1984;Suárez & Olson, 2003). Aquí reportamos el primer registro fósil para la familia Ciconiidae en Bolivia y el primero para Ciconia maltha en Sudamérica. ...
... The Cuban bare-legged owl Margarobyas lawrencii (Sclater and Salvin, 1868) is a poorly studied small strigiform bird endemic to Cuba and the adjacent Island of Pines (König and Weick, 2008;Weidensaul, 2015). The species has a complicated nomenclatural history (see Olson and Suarez, 2008) and was often included in the genus Otus Pennant, 1769 or the monotypic genus Gymnoglaux Cabanis, 1855. The currently accepted genus name Margarobyas was introduced by Olson and Suarez (2008). ...