FW: Vanellus miles/novaehollandiae

To: "'Birding-aus'" <>
Subject: FW: Vanellus miles/novaehollandiae
From: "John Penhallurick" <>
Date: Thu, 7 Jun 2012 17:02:31 +1000
Hi Friends,

You can see Les Christridis backs me up!

John Penhallurick


From: Les Christidis  
Sent: Thursday, June 07, 2012 3:46 PM
To: John Penhallurick
Subject: Re: Vanellus miles/novaehollandiae


Dear John



As usual I think you have made a very astute observation. The extent of
hybridisation in species complexes based on museum collections is always a
gross over estimate. Museum collectors mainly target hybrid individuals in
apparent zones of integradation. I well remember trying to collect Vanellus
miles hybrids up north when I was with CSIRO. Dick Schodde insisted we only
collected hybrids. 





On Wed, Jun 6, 2012 at 9:43 PM, John Penhallurick <>

Hi Les,

I have been getting more and more suspicious that the lumping of Vanellus
miles and Vanellus novaehollandiae is unjustified.  Even Peters (1934), that
super-lumper kep them separate.  They were merged on the basis of
interbreeding around Cairns and in the Lake Eyre Basin. Now I am sure you
are aware that the thinking about the significance of hybridisation has
changed radically of late.  I haed an email from a birder in Cairns who told
me that the common Vanellus there was miles. Novaehollandiae is rare, as are
hybrids.  I haven't been able to get any reliable data from the Lake Eyre
Basin.  Birders rarely go there and none of the landholders knows anything
about birds.  But given the situation around Cairns, I would be very
surprised if it was very different around Lake  Eyre. I know that an
ornithologist from the SA Museum brought back a set of hybirds, but if he
set out to collect hybrids, this means nothing.

What do you thinK?



Dr John Penhallurick

86 Bingley Cres

Fraser A.C.T. 2615


email: <> 

Phone: Home (612) 62585428 <tel:%28612%29%2062585428> 


sunt lacrimae rerum et mentem mortalia tangunt Aeneid Book 1,line 462  "The
world is a world of tears, and the burdens of mortality touch the heart."

Magna est veritas et praevalebit Vulgate, Book of Edras

The legitimate object of government is to do for a community of people
whatever they need to have done, but can not do at all, or can not so well
do, for themselves-in their separate, and individual capacities. Abraham

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Professor Les Christidis

Director, National Marine Science Centre

School of Environment, Science and Engineering

Southern Cross University 

PO Box 4321, Coffs Harbour, NSW, Australia 2450

T: 61-2-66483901; M: 0447652387




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