Re: Identity of Scaly/White's Thrush in Lamington National Park

Subject: Re: Identity of Scaly/White's Thrush in Lamington National Park
From: Peter Woodall <>
Date: Wed, 04 Mar 1998 08:08:47 +1000

Both species, Russet-tailed Z. heinei and Bassian Thrush 
Z. lunulata occur at Lamington. Z. heinei is generally found
below 750 m asl, Z. lunulata gerally above 500 m asl there
is some overlap.

>From the description it sounds more like Z. heinei, which is smaller,
generally has more russet on the rump & tail (but this is variable) and
which shows considerably more white on the inner web of the outer
tail feather (extending from the tip to the base 13-33mm in Z. heinei, 
5-12mm in Z. lunulata).

Identification can be tricky (even museum specimens can be incorrect)
and the late Julian Ford, who sorted out this complex (Emu 83:141-151),
found some intermediate specimens that might be hybrids.

I know a little about this because I've been preparing a note on the
two species which will come out in the Qld Nats Club Newasletter 
later this year,



At 10:55 3/03/98 +0000, you wrote:
>A British birder writes...I spent a fantastic day birding around O' 
> Reillys in Lamington National Park, Qld in late October 1995.  In 
> eight hours I was fortunate to see Noisy Pitta, Albert's Lyrebird, 
> Logrunner, Paradise Riflebird, Green Catbird...and a White's Thrush.
>My field notes state: "Rufous rump, not much scaling, white on tail tip 
> extends up outer tail feathers, no pale eye ring".
>>From Simpson and Day (First Edition) this sounds like a description of 
> the race heinei yet on range I guess it should have been lunulata.
>Can anyone help out with a definitive view ?  What are the 
> White's/Scaly Thrushes found at Lamington?  Do both heinei and 
> lunulata occur?  And what is the current thinking on these subspecies/species?
>Adrian Pitches
>**FAO Tony Palliser - I was the Brit you kindly chauffeured up to Glen 
> Davis to see Regent Honeyeater, Plum-headed Finch, Turquoise Parrot 
> etc on 4/11/95 just a week after providing the same service to another 
> British birder.  Thanks again!**    
Dr Peter Woodall                          email = 
Division of Pathobiology                
School of Veterinary Science              Phone = +61 7 3365 2300
The University of Queensland              Fax   = +61 7 3365 1355
Brisbane, Qld, Australia 4072          WWW  =
"hamba phezulu" (= "go higher" in isiZulu)


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