|Bocage's weaver (P. temporalis) and|
Bertram's weaver (P. bertrandi) ♀
Taxonomy and systematics
The genus Ploceus was introduced by the French naturalist Georges Cuvier in 1816. The type species was subsequently designated as the baya weaver. The genus name is from Ancient Greek πλοκευς plokeus meaning "weaver", and is derived from the Greek word πλεκω plekō "to entwine".
Based on recent DNA-analysis, the genus Ploceus is almost certainly polyphyletic. If all species currently included in the genus would remain and the genus would be made monophyletic, it would have to encompass the entire subfamily Ploceinae. The Ploceinae can be divided into two groups. In the first group, the widowbirds and bishops (genus Euplectes) are sister to a clade in which the genera Foudia and Quelea are closest relatives and which further includes the Asiatic species of Ploceus, i.e. P. manyar, P. philippinus, P. benghalensis, P. megarhynchus, (and P. hypoxanthus, although untested). Since Georges Cuvier picked P. philippinus as the type species, these five species would logically remain assigned to the genus Ploceus.
Basic to the second group is a clade consisting of both species so far included in Ploceus that live on Madagascar, P. nelicourvi and P. sakalava, and these are morphologically very distinct from the remaining species. These two species could in future be assigned to the genus Nelicurvius that was erected by Charles Lucien Bonaparte in 1850, but which was merged with Ploceus later on. This second group further contains the genera Malimbus and Anaplectes, and all remaining Ploceus species. As Malimbus is the earlier name, erected by Vieillot et al. in 1805, the remaining species of Ploceus, as well as Anaplectes rubiceps, could in future be assigned to Malimbus. These changes are largely corroborated by morphological revisions. Provided that the other genera that have not been proposed to be merged into an extended "Malimbus" are monophyletic, the following (incomplete) tree expresses current insights.
The genus contains 64 species.
- Baglafecht weaver (Ploceus baglafecht)
- Bannerman's weaver (Ploceus bannermani)
- Bates's weaver (Ploceus batesi)
- Black-chinned weaver (Ploceus nigrimentus)
- Bertram's weaver (Ploceus bertrandi)
- Slender-billed weaver (Ploceus pelzelni)
- Loango weaver (Ploceus subpersonatus)
- Little weaver (Ploceus luteo)
- Spectacled weaver (Ploceus ocularis)
- Black-necked weaver (Ploceus nigricollis)
- Strange weaver (Ploceus alienus)
- Black-billed weaver (Ploceus melanogaster)
- Cape weaver (Ploceus capensis)
- Bocage's weaver (Ploceus temporalis)
- Eastern golden weaver (Ploceus subaureus)
- Holub's golden weaver (Ploceus xanthops)
- Orange weaver (Ploceus aurantius)
- Heuglin's masked weaver (Ploceus heuglini)
- Golden palm weaver (Ploceus bojeri)
- Taveta weaver (Ploceus castaneiceps)
- Príncipe weaver (Ploceus princeps)
- Northern brown-throated weaver (Ploceus castanops)
- Southern brown-throated weaver (Ploceus xanthopterus)
- Kilombero weaver (Ploceus burnieri)
- Rüppell's weaver (Ploceus galbula)
- Northern masked weaver (Ploceus taeniopterus)
- Lesser masked weaver (Ploceus intermedius)
- Southern masked weaver (Ploceus velatus)
- Katanga masked weaver (Ploceus katangae)
- Lufira masked weaver (Ploceus ruweti)
- Tanzanian masked weaver (Ploceus reichardi)
- Vitelline masked weaver (Ploceus vitellinus)
- Speke's weaver (Ploceus spekei)
- Fox's weaver (Ploceus spekeoides)
- Village weaver (Ploceus cucullatus)
- Giant weaver (Ploceus grandis)
- Vieillot's black weaver (Ploceus nigerrimus)
- Weyns's weaver (Ploceus weynsi)
- Clarke's weaver (Ploceus golandi)
- Juba weaver (Ploceus dichrocephalus)
- Black-headed weaver (Ploceus melanocephalus)
- Golden-backed weaver (Ploceus jacksoni)
- Cinnamon weaver (Ploceus badius)
- Chestnut weaver (Ploceus rubiginosus)
- Golden-naped weaver (Ploceus aureonucha)
- Yellow-mantled weaver (Ploceus tricolor)
- Maxwell's black weaver (Ploceus albinucha)
- Nelicourvi weaver (Ploceus nelicourvi)
- Sakalava weaver (Ploceus sakalava)
- Asian golden weaver (Ploceus hypoxanthus)
- Compact weaver (Ploceus superciliosus)
- Black-breasted weaver (Ploceus benghalensis)
- Streaked weaver (Ploceus manyar)
- Baya weaver (Ploceus philippinus)
- Finn's weaver (Ploceus megarhynchus)
- Dark-backed weaver (Ploceus bicolor)
- Preuss's weaver (Ploceus preussi)
- Yellow-capped weaver (Ploceus dorsomaculatus)
- Olive-headed weaver (Ploceus olivaceiceps)
- Usambara weaver (Ploceus nicolli)
- Brown-capped weaver (Ploceus insignis)
- Bar-winged weaver (Ploceus angolensis)
- São Tomé weaver (Ploceus sanctithomae)
- Yellow-legged weaver (Ploceus flavipes)
- Cuvier, Georges (1816). Le Règne animal distribué d'après son organisation : pour servir de base a l'histoire naturelle des animaux et d'introduction a l'anatomie comparée (in French). Volume 1. Paris: Déterville. p. 383.
- Mayr, Ernst; Greenway, James C. Jr, eds. (1962). Check-list of birds of the world. Volume 15. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Museum of Comparative Zoology. p. 32.
- Jobling, J.A. (2018). del Hoyo, J.; Elliott, A.; Sargatal, J.; Christie, D.A.; de Juana, E., eds. "Key to Scientific Names in Ornithology". Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions. Retrieved 5 May 2018.
- De Silva, Thilina N.; Peterson, A. Townsend; Bates, John M.; Fernandoa, Sumudu W.; Girard, Matthew G. (2017). "Phylogenetic relationships of weaverbirds (Aves: Ploceidae): A first robust phylogeny based on mitochondrial and nuclear markers". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 109: 21–32. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2016.12.013. Retrieved 2017-04-05.
- Wolters, H.E. (1970). "On the generic classification of the weaver-birds of the Malimbus-Ploceus group" (PDF). Natural History Bulletin of the Siam Society. 23: 369–391.
- Del Hoyo, J.; Elliott, A.; Christie, D. (2010). Handbook of the Birds of the World. 15. Weavers to New World Warblers. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions.
- Gill, Frank; Donsker, David, eds. (2018). "Old World sparrows, snowfinches, weavers". World Bird List Version 8.2. International Ornithologists' Union. Retrieved 26 November 2018.