For those interested the
"debate/poll/plebiscite/discussion/referendum/debate/rage" was published in the
pages of Wingspan,
Jun 1993, p10-11 "Towards a new Australian
No.11, Sep 1993,
p8,9 "Is the Tail wagging the
No.12, Dec 1993,
p27 "The great
No.13, Mar 1994,
p23-26 "REN or fairy-wren ? The debate
No.14, Jun 1994,
"Recommended English Names - a never ending story"
Vol5,No.1, Mar 1995,
p20-23 "And the Winner is ..Recommended English
A set of guidelines were published - I
There are a number of principles that were used in
choosing English names in the 1977 list and it is worth repeating some of them
here - For species endemic to
Australia, traditional names or those widely used are respected.
species that range beyond Australia, the name most widely or
authoritatively used is preferred.
- If taxonomic changes combine two or more
former species, the name of the result should be the English name most
- If the name of an Australian species duplicates a well-established
name overseas, it is desirable to change the Australian name.
- If a
group-name misrepresents the taxonomic affinities of a species it ought to
be changed to one that does not do so.
It is hoped ? realistically, we
think ?that we can decide what names are to be used for Australian birds for all
time, unless taxonomic decisions warrant a change. This is an opportunity for
all members, friends and birdwatchers to have their say. Please send us your
comments ? we welcome all letters and will try to publish some, but we need
84 replies were received including all the major Birding
A meeting was convened and attended by representatives from
organisations including BOCA, NSW FOC,NSW ORAC,AAA,COG,RAOU Taxonomic Advisory
Committee,Hanzab plus Ken Simpson. Peter Slater's comments were
considered. Graham Pizzey sent his apologies.
It does seem that the decision making process was democratic
The decisions were documented and make good reading. I am sure
all the Capital city libraries would have copies of the Wingspans.
Michael Hunter's last posting does containing some points to
Regards, Bob Forsyth, Mount Isa, NW Qld.
Since then the Schodde and Mason splits have been
promulgated and adopted into Hanzab without any general discussion of which I am
In fact the first recorders of the Kalkadoon
Grasswren (who prefered the name "Ballara Grasswren") were not consulted
as to its use.