Australian Birds

All modern birds are housed in the subclass Neornithes, which branch into two main groups: the Palaeognathae, or palaeognaths, which comprises the ratites (ostrich, emus, cassowaries, rheas and kiwis, as well as the recently extinct moas and elephantbirds) and tinamous, and the Neognathae, which is made up of all the other birds. This then divides into the Galloanseres (waterfowl [Anseriformes] and landfowl [Galliformes]) and the Neoaves (all others). The Neoaves are then split further by some authorities into the Metaves (Australian representatives are the tropicbirds, grebes, flamingoes, pigeons, frogmouths, nightjars, owlet-nightjars and swifts) and the Coronaves (all other families).