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A level used in classification. In the sequence of classification levels, a family forms part of an order and is subdivided into one or more genera [1] Many families end in -idae [2] [3] <ref name="Kenya">Zimmerman, Dale A.; et al. (1999). Birds of Kenya and Northern Tanzania. Princeton University Press. p. 432. ISBN 0691010226. </noinclude>

Scientists organize animal species into family groups that share certain structural or molecular characteristics [4]

Some families may encompass more than a hundred members, while other may only have one [4] (e.g. Tyrannidae or Peucedramidae, respectively).

An example[]

Take the members of the Picidae family, for example. They all have strong, sharp bills, strong claws and short legs [4].

See also[]

Biological classification
List of bird families


  1. ^ Frances, Peter; et al. (2007). Bird: The Definitive Visual Guide. Dorling Kindersley Inc. ISBN 1564582957. 
  2. ^ Terres, John K. (1980). The Audubon Society Encyclopedia of North American Birds. Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. ISBN 0394466519. 
  3. ^ Wright, Michael and Sparrow, Giles (2003). Expert Guide: Marine Life. Brown Books Ltd. ISBN 1897884907. 
  4. ^ a b c Dunn, Jon L. and Alderfer, Jonathan (2011). National Geographic Guide to the Birds of North America. National Geographic Society. ISBN 1426200722. 
Anatomy of an amiotic egg This article is part of Project Glossary, an All Birds project that aims to write comprehensive articles on each term related to animals.

Hemipus picatus This article is part of Project Taxonomy, an All Birds project that aims to write comprehensive articles on each taxonomic term.