Tag Archives: Lamprolia

Lamprolia victoriae Finsch

Silktail (Lamprolia victoriae)

The Silktail is restricted to the island of Taveuni.

The birds inhabit the dense understory of the rainforests and frequently visit the forest floor in search for small insects, where they, because of their dull colouration, are very hard to detect. While hopping araound the forest floor, the birds repeatedly flick and close their wings, showing the bright white feathers of their rumps, which clearly have a signal effect.

The Fijian name of the Silktail is sisi resp. tuti.

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The Silktail has been placed in various bird families (including the birds of paradise (Paradisaeidae), the monarch flycatchers (Monarchidae), and most recently the fantails (Rhipiduridae)), however, gene analytical studies have proven that the species has a common ancestor with a bird from New Guinea, the Pygmy Drongo (Chaetorhynchus papuensis Meyer), and that it should best be placed within its own family.

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References:

[1] B. D. Heather: The Vanua Levu Silktail (Lamprolia victoriae kleinschmidti): a preliminary look at its status and habits. Notornis 24(2): 94-128. 1977
[2] Martin Irested; Jérome Fuchs; Knud A. Jønsson; Jan I. Ohlson; Eric Pasquet; Per G. P. Pasquet: The systematic affinity of the enigmatic Lamprolia victoriae (Aves: Passeriformes)-An example of avian dispersal between New Guinea and Fiji over Miocene intermittent land bridges?. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 48(3): 1218–1222. 2008

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lamprolia-victoriae-om

Depiction from: ‘G. D. Rowley: The Birds of the Fiji Islands. In: Ornithological Miscellany 2(5): 23-39. London: Trübner and Co., Bernard Quaritch, R. H. Porter 1876’

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