A 'Morepork' question

To: "Mike Carter" <>
Subject: A 'Morepork' question
From: John Tongue <>
Date: Sat, 16 Jun 2012 21:32:38 +1000
Thanks Mike,
I don't know enough about genetics, but I find it hard to imagine a process of 
speciation that would have Tassie Boobooks in the same taxon as NZ birds, but a 
different taxon to the mainland Boobooks!!

It does give me an easy armchair tick!

Thanks again,
John Tongue
Ulverstone, Tas.

On 16/06/2012, at 6:50 PM, Mike Carter wrote:

> Coming from Tasmania as you do, I'm not surprised that you raised this one 
> and I apologise for misleading everyone by telling only half the story.
> Firstly, whilst the IOC recognises that the Boobook from Lord Howe Island is 
> extinct, that is not their position with regard to the bird on Norfolk 
> Island. Whilst I believe that the last surviving NI Boobook is now dead and 
> prior to her decease due to extreme age had not bred for several years, I 
> think that some believe that her genes live on within the current hybrid 
> stock. The males were introduced NZ Moreporks so that may justify the use of 
> that name. I think someone told me that female genes are more significant in 
> these respects. I hope someone with a better understanding of both these 
> matters can clarify.
> But of more interest to all Australians and you in particular as well of some 
> of us here in Victoria and South Australia where from time to time claims of 
> Tasmanian Boobooks having crossed Bass Strait derive, is the fact that the 
> IOC consider the that your Tasmanian Boobook is a different species to ours 
> on the mainland! They lump it with the NZ Morepork!!! Many, many years ago 
> Les Christidis told me that the Tasmanian bird was a different species but I 
> was not aware of its closer relationship to the NZ form.
> Mike Carter
> 30 Canadian Bay Road
> Mount Eliza  VIC 3930
> Tel  (03) 9787 7136

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