Splits 2

Subject: Splits 2
From: Phil & Sue Gregory <>
Date: Thu, 3 Jan 2013 15:20:39 +1000
Ah yes, rosellas, maybe we should split Adelaide and the FNQ birds as well? I 
opted for a compromise as it seems to me Yellow looks so different and has 
different habitat, but these things are not exactly set in stone, I fear it's a 
case of large white-headed gull syndrome in Europe where there are a multitude 
of different ways to classify the species formerly known as Herring Gull. I 
tend to avoid going solely by DNA results, and like to look at morphology, 
habitat, vocalizations etc but it all comes down to a matter of opinion.

The Ringnecks are a similar category, there was very interesting paper a while 
back (which I don't currently have to hand) which split out 3 quite distinct 
clades, roughly corresponding to Australian Ringneck, Mallee Ringneck and also 
Cloncurry Ringneck, and this made good sense to me though I have hedged on 
Cloncurry for the moment. Not sure where the Flinders Ra. birds fit, don't they 
look like the western types? Be good to have a look at Double-eyed Fig-Parrots 

Shrike-tits seem to me to be a clear cut split, with distinct morphology and 
occurring in areas with high endemism. Northern (and maybe also Western?) has 
very different calls, so rather than wait forever for DNA analysis results I 
went with what looks pretty clear already, indeed as the prescient Dick Schodde 
& ian Mason suggested in their landmark Directory of Australian Birds, where 
virtually all the proposed splits have come to pass or are pending.

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