New Grasswren Species

To: "'Tony Russel'" <>, "'birding-aus threads'" <>
Subject: New Grasswren Species
From: "Bob and Trish" <>
Date: Wed, 23 Nov 2011 11:24:10 +1030
The South Australian Ornithologist Vol 37 - part 2 - September 2011 has a
comprehensive 21 page article by Andrew Black, Graham Carpenter and Lynn
Pedler which describes the distribution and habitats of the Thick-billed
Grasswren Aytornis modestus and the Western Grasswren Amytornis textilis
myall in South Australia.

Unfortunately this issue of the South Australian Ornithologist does not yet
appear to be on the Birds SA website.

Bob Sothman

-----Original Message-----
 On Behalf Of Tony Russel
Sent: Wednesday, 23 November 2011 10:18 AM
To: 'martin cachard'; ; 'birding-aus threads'
Subject: New Grasswren Species

I'm very confused by all this.  I've been to all the locations mentioned and
seen Grasswrens, but now don't know which sp and ssp I've seen where. I just
wish someone would publish a definitive listing of which birds are in which
locations -- can do, please?


-----Original Message-----
 On Behalf Of martin cachard
Sent: Wednesday, 23 November 2011 9:25 AM
To: ; birding-aus threads
Subject: New Grasswren Species

G'day all, It would be very interesting to get the current taxonomic musings
for our grasswrens, especially the Striated GW complex.  Firstly, I must
apologise in advance for my simplistic understanding of taxonomy, but I do
hope that my questions & thoughts below are seen as very much that of a
layman...  Richard B has commented that whitei & rowleyi may be next to be
split from Striated. I've often wondered how much habitat preference would
play in this. Apart from morphological differences, the Short-tailed
merrotsyi is a rock inhabiting species, quite unlike the nominate race
striatus of Striated, which is a sandplain bird. Race rowleyi of Striated is
also a sandplain inhabitant, well, at least from my observations. Yet, race
whitei inhabits rocky terrain.  There must be a lot more to it than just
sandplain vs rocky terrain, but I wonder why it has been mooted that rowleyi
is the next most likely race of Striated to be split, given that it a
sandplain bird (at least from 
 my experience). I would have thought that whitei being a bird of rocky
terrain (as is merrotsyi Short-tailed GW), would be one to consider very
closely. It would be interesting to get others' thoughts on this..... Cheers
for now, Martin Cachard,Cairns, 0428 782 808  > Date: Mon, 21 Nov 2011
17:35:17 -0800
> From: 
> To: 
> CC: 
> Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] New Grasswren Species
> Yes, Jeff and Martin you're absolutely correct.  I did have my ssp mixed
up.  The new Thick-billed is the one many people see at the whiteface site
at Lyndhurst and surrounds.   My visit to Mt Ive was two fold as I'd only
ever had very poor, barely tickable views of Short-tailed in the Flinders
and wanted to see them again.   
> Although Western/Thick-billed are flat/low country birds, I have heard
that the Whyallah birds are found on the hill tops in the Conservation Park
near town. I've never been there but this is something I've often wondered
about.  Perhaps someone who has been to Whyallah CP can comment on this.
> Next stop: whitei androwleyi.
> I now think albatross taxonomy is easier than grasswren taxonomy!
> Cheers
> Richard
>  From: Jeff Davies <>
> To: 'martin cachard' <>; ;
'birding-aus threads' <> 
> Sent: Tuesday, 22 November 2011 11:50 AM
> Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] New Grasswren Species
> I think I should have explained more clearly, the important thing to
> is that the Western and Thick-billed are not actually on the ranges but on
> the flat country.
> I was just continuing on from Richards original post by saying he should
> have gone to the Flinders not the Gawlers, neither species are actually on
> the hills although they can be very close by. When I said Flinders I
> actually meant adjacent places like Lyndhurst which sits at the top of
> range.
> Short-tailed GW however is actually on the slopes of both ranges and
> else.
> Cheers Jeff.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: 
>  On Behalf Of martin
> Sent: Tuesday, 22 November 2011 9:52 AM
> To: ; birding-aus threads
> Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] New Grasswren Species
> Hi Steve, The bird at Whyallah is race myall of Western, same race Richard
> saw in the Gawlers. Form modestus (ie the new species split) is widespread
> in the Eyrean zone, which Jeff explains. I have seen lots of them north
> Lake Torrens in the Mt Lyndhurst area & right along the Oodnadatta Track,
> especially near William Creek. Cheers Martin CachardCairns
> > Date: Tue, 22 Nov 2011 09:35:13 +1100
> > From: 
> > To: 
> > Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] New Grasswren Species
> > 
> > G'day all
> > 
> > What is the species/subspecies of Grasswren in Whyallah Conservation
> > Park, SA please?  I saw what I called Thick-billed there in 1999.
> > What would the current taxonomic position be for these?
> > 
> > Cheers
> > Steve Clark
> > Hamilton
> > 


To unsubscribe from this mailing list,
send the message:
(in the body of the message, with no Subject line)

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the birding-aus mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the archive e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU