Open main menu

Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 21.djvu/482

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
468
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

of Reims and Mendon more closely by the discovery of the remains of gastornis in Champagne, from which he has constituted a new species that he calls Gastornis Eduardsii. The bird was not less than three PSM V21 D482 Tibia size comparison of a gastornis and a swan.jpgFig. 2.—A, Tibia of the Gastornis of Meudon (reduced to one third of the natural size). B, Tibia of the Common Swan (reduced to one third of the natural size). metres (about ten feet) high when standing, and is shown in that position in Fig. 1. The author possesses the femur, the tibia, the tarso-metatarsian, and several phalangeal bones of this bird. The pelvis is represented in his collection by an ischion and the upper extremity of the pubis. A cervical vertebra, a caudal vertebra, a fragment of the sternum, and ends of the ribs, have furnished him subjects for interesting observations. Dr. Lemoine has collected pieces of bone, which he considers half of a breastbone and a coracoid bone. He also describes the lower end of the humerus, a radius, a metacarpian, and the terminal phalangeal of the wing. A large proportion of the bones of the head have also been found by the author during his paleontological probings, and with their aid he is able to complete the description of this remarkable ornithological type.

All the parts of the skeleton so far discovered are represented in Fig. 1, where they have been so placed as to show the skeleton restored, in its normal position.

This richness of his material has enabled Dr. Lemoine to form very precise notions concerning the giant bird of the environs of Reims. In his opinion, the cranium must have been relatively voluminous and less disproportionate than the cranium of the ostrich.

This is indicated by the quadrate bone, a part of the orbitary cavity, and almost the whole of the base of the cranium, in which the occipital condyle, the sub-condylian furrow, the basilar tuberosities, the