I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas break!
This week I have another specimen from the Dead Zoo to identify – this one has an identification already, but the taxonomy is rather archaic and I think that once you’ve investigated the modern version of the name, you’ll realise that it’s wrong.
So, any idea what this name should actually be and, more importantly, what the identification actually is?
As always, you can put your thoughts, questions and suggestions in the comments box below – have fun!
I’m guessing the original curator thought this bird was one of the ancien regime (perhaps even the one named for a chimæra), whereas it is very much from le monde nouveau, and probably royalty there, too.
More explicitly: pampas rap chorus
This bird was a lot more colourfull in life, I wish I had it in my collection, the S. p.
I blame the original owner who died in 1863 for the ancient identification https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theodoor_Gerard_van_Lidth_de_Jeude
Modern version of Orogyps auricularis is Torgos tracheliotos which is a very large African vulture. The one from the picture is an American vulture and is much smaller. All American vultures have other ancesters than the African vultures and therefor they differ in shape of skulls. I think the owner thought it was Torgos because of the colorfull head.
more griffon than turkey, I’d have thought?
That’s my guess too.
Oh, I wasn’t supposed to spell out my bird?
Generally people stick to cryptic clues and initials – I only interfere when people get it right, as it allows others to carry on playing if they come late to the game 🙂
Thanks! I’ll comply. I love this blog!
Glad you like it!
The correct identification for this skull seems to have been in current use as far back as this publication: Catalogue of the Contents of the Museum of the Royal College of Surgeons in London, Volume 6; see https://books.google.com/books?id=u8dbAAAAQAAJ&pg=PA312&lpg=PA312&dq=king+vulture+cranium&source=bl&ots=sDuRxqhYAH&sig=TdiuhgqLOYfN9UOUtSSyOorn9FU&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiThOHY1q_YAhUF-GMKHRqUCuIQ6AEIRTAI#v=onepage&q=king%20vulture%20cranium&f=false
A regal buzzard if in name anyhow