Nyctanassa carcinocatactes is described from Pleistocene and Holocene cave and pond deposits on the island of Bermuda. It is most similar to the Yellow-crowned Night-Heron N. violacea but differs in having a shorter and much heavier bill, a much more massive cranium, and more robust hindlimbs. Early historical accounts contain descriptions of what is undoubtedly this species, which was presumably exterminated subsequent to human colonization of Bermuda. The cranial and hindlimb specializations of the new species appear to be adaptations for feeding terrestrially on land crabs.
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Vol. 119 • No. 2