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common name for gregarious, aquatic birds comprising three species in the family Anhimidae. Although they are related to the ducks and geese, they do not resemble them in outward appearance. Screamers possess some unusual anatomical features, such as a layer of insulating air cells that separate the outer skin from the body. This feature is also seen in the pelicans. They share another peculiarity solely with colies, penguins, and ostriches—their feathers grow over the body without any bare spaces (called apteria) in between. Another peculiarity of the screamers is their hollow bones. Finally, they lack particular rib bones that are functional as strengthening elements in all other birds except the extinct Archaeopteryx. The turkey-sized horned screamer (Anhima cornuta) is the largest of the family. It is distinguished by a 3- to 4-in. (8- to 10-cm) hornlike projection on its forehead and by two sharp wing spurs. A creature of the wetlands and tropical rain forest, it is found throughout most of South America. The slightly smaller crested screamer (Chauna torquata) is native to swamps and plains from Brazil to N Argentina. It is distinguished by a short, feathered neck crest. The swan-sized black-necked screamer (C. chavaria) of N Colombia and Venezuela is the smallest and darkest of the family. Using their short, conical, fowllike bills, screamers feed primarily on a vegetable diet of succulent grasses and seeds, although the horned screamer occasionally eats insects as well. Screamers are strong fliers and generally roost in trees. However, their delicate, shallow nests of rushes are built on the water or in marshes. Their white or buffy eggs number from two to six per clutch. Both sexes share incubation duties. The chicks are downy and resemble baby swans. Screamers are classified in the phylum ChordataChordata
, phylum of animals having a notochord, or dorsal stiffening rod, as the chief internal skeletal support at some stage of their development. Most chordates are vertebrates (animals with backbones), but the phylum also includes some small marine invertebrate animals.
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, subphylum Vertebrata, class Aves, order Anseriformes, family Anhimidae.


An extension of Common Lisp providing nondeterministic backtracking and constraint programming.

References in periodicals archive ?
Once you've identified a screamer, you can brace yourself to some degree for his outbursts - though they may still take a toll on you.
Curiously, I spotted the screamers and moaners at the Stop The War rallies, a few years back, where they proudly held aloft placards stating: "We Are All Hezbollah Now.
For the first week or so the screamers, which are very peculiar birds, stayed at the back of their enclosure, but they have become more confident and when it comes to screams you never know.
To reach the talks he has to cross some badlands which are patrolled by sophisticated killer robots called screamers.
Singles serve varieties featuring the Ice Screamers banner will include the Shock Tarts, Itzakadoozie, NesQuik, and Push-Ups products, as well as Rainbow Rock Pops, and Mickey Bars.
A German neighbour who lived on the island was head-butted in the face and thrown into the sea by the Screamers in a dispute over firewood.
Screamers (a Canadian-Japanese-American co-production) comes to the screen with an equally impressive pedigree and its own slew of futuristic concerns.
Oilean tracks founder Jenny James who later moved the Screamers to Colombia.
Debate has now been replaced by syndicated all-knowing screamers, interrupters, bashers and other assassins of what talk used to be.
Our peak-hatted music buff said Dido's note-perfect performance was accompanied by high-pitched squeals from the special screamers employed by MTV.