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Temporal range: Quaternary
Vorombe titan femur.jpg
Syntype femur
Extinct  (1000 AD)
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Aepyornithiformes
Family: Aepyornithidae
Genus: Vorombe
Hansford and Turvey, 2018

Vorombe titan
(Andrews, 1894)

Vorombe map.jpg
Map of Madagascar showing where specimens have been found
  • Aepyornis titan Andrews, 1894
  • Aepyornis ingens Milne-Edwards & Grandidier, 1894

Vorombe is one of three elephant bird species, an extinct family of large flightless birds endemic to Madagascar. Specimens belonging to Vorombe were once known as "Aepyornis" titan.

Taxonomy[change | change source]

Vorombe titan was first described by Charles William Andrews as Aepyornis titan in 1894. It was synonymized with the type species of Aepyornis, A. maximus, by American paleontologist Pierce Brodkorb in 1963.[1] In 2018, James Hansford and Samuel Turvey, two researchers from the Zoological Society of London, found that it was sufficiently distinct from Aepyornis and allocated it in the new genus Vorombe.

Size[change | change source]

The mass estimate of the specimen is comparable to or greater than the mass estimates of the smallest (insular dwarfs) sauropod dinosaurs, Europasaurus (690 kg) and Magyarosaurus (700 to 1,000 kg).[2]

References[change | change source]

  1. Brodkorb, Pierce (1963). Catalogue of Fossil Birds. Part 1 (Archaeopterygiformes through Ardeiformes) (PDF). Gainesville, FL: University of Florida.
  2. Hansford, J. P.; Turvey, S. T. (2018-09-26). "Unexpected diversity within the extinct elephant birds (Aves: Aepyornithidae) and a new identity for the world's largest bird". Royal Society Open Science 5 (9): 181295. doi:10.1098/rsos.181295.