Sandcoleiformes is an extinct order of Paleogene birds found from Green River Formation (USA), London Clay (England), Messel (Germany) and Phosphorites of Quercy (France) was established by Olson and Houde (1992). Sandcoleiformes are a polyphyletic assemblage of primitive members of at least three separate orders of modern birds, Psittaciformes, Coraciiformes and Coliiformes.
Sandcoleiformes were similar to the extant Mousebirds of Africa, but less specialized, and have a cladistic affinity to Woodpeckers. Filling the niches of today's passerines, they seem to have been out-competed when the latter evolved, much in the same way that modern carnivores replaced the Creodonts.
- ^ Feduccia, A., 1996: The origin and evolution of birds. Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1996, xii-420
- ^ a b Mayr, G., Mourer-Chauviré, C. & Weidig, I., 2004: Osteology and systematic position of the Eocene Primobucconidae (Aves, Coraciiformes sensu stricto), with first records from Europe. Journal of Systematic Palaeontology: Vol. 2, #1, pp. 1-12
- ^ Mayr, G. & Mourer-Chauviré, C., 2004: Unusual tarsometatarsus of a mousebird from the Paleocene of France and the relationships of Selmes Peters, 1999. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology: Vol. 24, #2, pp. 366-372