Australian Birds

 

Australian Birds are a familiar sight in the bush, backyards, parks and gardens. 

 They can fly, walk, run, swim and dive. They occupy the air, oceans, fresh water, seashores, rainforests, deserts and polar regions. They have extraordinary colours and cryptic patterns that enable them to be well camouflaged. Worldwide there are around 10,000 species of birds of which over 700 occur in Australia.

Birds are warm-blooded vertebrates with feathers. This easily distinguishes them from all other living animals. Other easily observed features include: fore limbs modified as wings, jaws lacking teeth and with a horny cover and they walk on their two hind limbs

Although they cannot be mistaken for any other living group of animals, the line between birds and non-birds is much less distinct if fossil animals are examined. Many characteristics that distinguish them from other living vertebrates first arose in certain groups of dinosaurs. For this reason, many scientists believe they evolved directly from these dinosaurs.

Excerpt from Australian Museum

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