The modern representatives of this taxon have a worldwide distribution and include more than 80 species, but its Paleogene fossil record is very sparse. Olson (1999a) tentatively assigned to the Caprimulgidae some isolated bones (proximal humerus, carpometacarpus, and distal tarsometatarsus) from the early Eocene Nanjemoy Formation of Virginia, which belong to at least two different small species. The only other Paleogene specimens are two coracoids from the late Eocene of the Quercy fissure fillings, which were described as Ventivorus ragei by Mourer-Chauvire (1989). The identification of these fossils needs to be bolstered with more
material (Feduccia 1999, p. 320, erroneously stated that V. ragei was assigned to the Archaeotrogonidae by Mourer-Chauvire 1989).
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