Western Golden Whistler
Martin Cake <>
Wed, 7 Jan 2015 22:27:00 +0000
Hi Patrick et al
I haven't read the Joseph paper but the original Jonsson paper that sparked it
is available here from a link on birdforum:
>From this paper you can get a sense of the tree - note 'pectoralis fuliginosa'
>are less closely related to the other Golden Whistler subspecies than the
>latter are to Mangrove Golden Whistler, making the whole complex paraphyletic.
>My understanding is in subsequent papers they resampled eastern/SA fuliginosa
>and clarified that they lump with other eastern birds (youngi and pectoralis).
This split came out of the blue since WA and SA birds have been lumped under
the same subspecies (fuliginosa) for some time, though Schodde & Mason do note
WA birds can be distinguished as 'regional form' occidentalis. Not much
distinguishes these two so its probably fair to call this a cryptic species,
but the males have a more lemon-yellow breast and greyer tail with a smaller
back tip. The females are paler and plainer, with a paler back (no contrast
with the crown) and paler buff on the belly.
The separation occurs at the Nullarbor proper so a quick check of atlas data
suggests this will not be a WA endemic as there a few records on the SA side of
the WA/SA border that should be this new species. So an 'almost endemic'!
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