nankeen or rufous?

To: "Birding-aus" <>
Subject: nankeen or rufous?
From: "Tom and Mandy Wilson" <>
Date: Sat, 7 Apr 2007 17:29:00 +1000
Laurie is right - to our modern eyes, the night heron is more obviously rufous above than nankeen below, but as to obscurity, I strongly suspect that when the "nankeen" birds were first described, nankeen was not an obscure term as it was a material in common use in the 18th & 19th centuries. Obviously, time have moved on and nankeen is obscure to us. (Using the MD Definition - the bird should be "chestnut-brown night heron"!) (Perhaps I didn't understand the other question - aren't both male and female rufous whistlers rufous, the other dominant colour being grey, and there's already a grey whistler?)
Tom Wilson

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