Parula

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Parula
Northernparalua20.jpg
Northern Parula
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Parulidae
Genus: Parula
Bonaparte, 1838
Species

P. americana
P. pitiayumi

Synonyms

Chloris Boie, 1826 (non Cuvier, 1800: preoccupied)

Parula was formerly a small genus of New World warblers which breed in North and South America.

In 1758, Linnaeus classified the Northern Parula as a tit, Parus americanus, and as taxonomy developed the genus name was modified first to Parulus and then the current form. The family name, Parulidae, of course also derives from this source.

Most recently, the two species were:

(Flame-throated and Crescent-chested warblers were formerly classified in this genus.)

Taxonomy[edit]

Recent genetic research has suggested that Parula and Setophaga are congeneric and should be merged. As the name Setophaga (published in 1827) takes priority over Parula (published in 1838), both the species would be transferred to Setophaga where this is accepted.[1] This change has been accepted by the North American Classification Committee of the AOU,[2] and the IOC.,[3] however the South American Classification Committee of the AOU continues to use the genus Parula.

Biology[edit]

The Northern Parula winters south of its breeding ranges in Central America and the West Indies, where the Tropical Parula is a usually a permanent resident.

Parula warblers are tiny, 11–12 cm long. They have yellow, orange or red throats, with the color extending further down the underparts in some species. The upperparts and wings are various shades of grey or blue-gray, and the mantle is greener or blacker than the rest of the back.

The breeding habitat is woodlands with clearings. These warblers nest low in a tree or on the ground, laying 3-7 eggs in a cup nest.

Parula warblers feed on insects and spiders, often caught by flycatching, and they have distinctive buzzing songs and loud chip calls.

In Art[edit]

John James Audubon illustrated a pair of Northern Parulas in Birds of America (published, London 1827-38), Plate 15 entitled "Blue Yellow-backed Warbler - Sylvia americana". The birds are shown perched on a Louisiana Flag (Iris cuprea) painted by Joseph Mason to which Audubon added the two birds in 1821. The image was engraved and colored by the Robert Havell, London workshops.. The original watercolor by Audubon was purchased by the New York History Society where it remains to this day (January 2009).

References[edit]

  1. ^ Lovette, I. J. et al. (2010). A comprehensive multilocus phylogeny for the wood-warblers and a revised classification of the Parulidae (Aves). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 57 (2): 753-770. Abstract
  2. ^ Chesser, R. T. et al. (2011). Fifty-Second Supplement to the American Ornithologists’ Union Check-list of North American Birds. Auk 128 (3): 600-613 fulltext
  3. ^ IOC World Bird List Family Parulidae