Site hosted by Angelfire.com: Build your free website today!

Birds

Choose a group from the table below:


Perching Birds Woodpeckers Kingfishers Quetzals and Trogons
Mousebirds Hummingbirds and Swifts Oilbiurds and Nightjars Cuckoos
Parrots Pigeons Gulls and Terns Rails and Crane
Game Birds Owls Birds of Prey Waterfowl
Egrets and Flamingoes Pelicans and Cormorants Albatross and Petrels Grebes
Loons Tinamous Kiwis Emus
Rheas Ostriches Penguins


Class Aves

Birds are a very large and diverse group of vertebrates that are found everywhere in the world, from the Sahara Desert to Antarctica to the Amazon to Greenland. There are 8600 species of known birds divided into at least 27 orders. There are many subspecies, and if the subspecies were counted with the species, there would be 3200 more individuals. Birds are homoiothermic, or warm-blooded, with a constant temperature of 40-44 C. The skeleton is light and the bones are hollow in many areas. All birds have beaks, although they vary greatly in size and shape. Most birds have feathers instead of fur, with some near exceptions. Most birds can fly, although again ostriches, rheas, emus, kiwis, penguins, etc cannot. All birds have wings, although they are sometimes small and useless. Birds are oviparous, meaning they lay eggs. The female usually sits on the eggs to incubate them, although both parents can take turns and some species have only the males sitting on them. Other species bury their eggs or lay them in other birds' nests so that those birds will incubate them. The orders are as follows:

Anseriformes (waterfowl - ducks, swans, geese, screamers) 161 spp
Apodiformes (swifts, hummingbirds) 400 spp
Apterygiformes (kiwis) 4 spp (sometimes placed in Struthioniformes)
Caprimulgiformes (oilbirds, nightjars, potoos) 100 spp
Casuariiformes (emus, cassowaries) 4 ssp (sometimes placed in Struthioniformes)
Charadriiformes (guillemots, puffins, gulls, terns) 290 spp
Ciconiiformes (egrets, herons, bitterns, shoebills, flamingoes-flamingoes were previously in the order Phoenicopteriformes ) 124 spp
Coliiformes (mousebirds) 6 spp
Columbiformes (pigeons, doves) 300 spp
Coraciiformes (hornbills, kingfishers, hoopoes) 190 spp
Cuculiformes (cuckoos, turacos, anis) 150 spp
Falconiformes (eagles, falcons, hawks, kites, vultures, condors, buzzards) 280 spp
Galliformes (turkeys, fowl, quail, pheasant) 260 spp
Gaviiformes (Divers) 4 spp
Gruiformes (buttonquails, rails, cranes) 200 spp
Passeriformes (perching birds-robins, sparrows, chickadees, etc) 5100 spp
Pelecaniformes (pelicans, anhingas, cormorants) 60 spp
Piciformes (barbets, woodpeckers, flickers, toucans) 380 spp
Podicipediformes (grebes) 18 spp
Procellariiformes (albatross, petrels, shearwaters) 100 spp
Psittaciformes (parrots, parakeets, macaws) 330 spp
Rheiformes (rheas) 2 spp (sometimes placed in Struthioniformes)
Sphenisciformes (penguins, gentoos) 17 spp
Strigiformes (owls) 140 spp
Struthioniformes (ostriches) 1 ssp
Tinamiformes (tinamous) 50 ssp
Trogoniformes (trogons, quetzals) 35 spp

Back

Home