Meliphagidae Phylogeny

To: "Greg Clancy" <>, "Birding-aus" <>
Subject: Meliphagidae Phylogeny
From: "Stuart Cooney" <>
Date: Wed, 1 Sep 2004 13:13:23 +1000
I reckon that this is why this sort of molecular phylogenetics is so cool, and why it needs to be used in conjunction with field ecology.  I only recently saw my first Regent Honeyeater at Chiltern NP (Vic) last year and then I thought it was like a big colourful Wattlebird, and now, what do you know?
So birders know their birds and when this knowledge is coupled with differences in the molecular make up of different populations interesting conclusions can be drawn.
I thought one of the coolest parts of the Driskell and Christidis paper was the basal position of the Spinebills and how they are highly adapted to nectar feeding, which at the time was abundant as Australia was then covered in heathland.
Stuart Cooney
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