Order IX. CHARADRIIFORMES.
In 1922, in an admirable paper *, which appeared in ' The Ibis,' Dr. P. Lowe discussed certain characters of the above Order and I adopt in the present work the conclusions arrived at in this paper, with the exception of the position of the Jacanidae, which Dr. Lowe himself modified in a subsequent paper. In this volume it would be impossible to quote his reasonings at any length and all that has been attempted is to briefly summarize the characters he relies on for his various divisions.
In the first place Dr. Lowe includes in the one Order,. Charadriiformes, Blanford's two Orders, Limicolae and Gaviae and then divides these into three Suborders, Oti-Limicolae, Limicolae-arid Laro-Limicolae, these again being divided into Families and Subfamilies which will be dealt with as each is arrived at.
In the Charadriiformes the wings are long, there are eleven primaries, though the terminal one is very short in the Laro-Limicolae; the fifth secondary is wanting; tail-feathers varying greatly in number, except in the Laro-Limicolae, in which they are always twelve ; the oil-gland is always present and tufted; spinal feather-tract well defined on the neck by lateral bare tracts, forked on the upper back; the dorsal apterium well developed; an after-shaft to the feathers always present. The skull is schizognathous ; sometimes schizorhinal, sometimes holorhinal; basipterygoid processes sometimes present, sometimes absent in. the Oti-Limicolae; always present in the Limicolae but always absent in the adult Laro-Limicolae; the furcula is U-shaped; there are always two carotids; caeca present; but small in the Laro-Limicolae and functionless in the Laridae.
" On Certain Characters in Charadriine Genera, " P. Lowe, Ibis, 1922, pp. 475-498.
" The Systematic Position of the Jacanidae, " Lowe, Ibis, 1925, pp. 132-147.
Key to Suborders.
A. No basipterygoid processes in the adult.
a. Ectethmoid absent…………Oti-Limicolae, p. 76.
b. Ectethmoid present …………Laro-Limicolae, p. 83.
B. Basipterygoid processes present in the adult…………Limicolae, p. 152.