Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Birds/Archive 55

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Archive 54 Archive 55 Archive 56

Missing IOC names (again)

OK, all of the missing IOC names are now listed at Wikipedia:WikiProject Birds/Missing IOC names

I have started to resolve the easier ones, but there are lots still to fix. Helpers please! SP-KP (talk) 13:37, 20 May 2011 (UTC)

Interesting. Will chip in. Casliber (talk · contribs) 01:56, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
Happy to help, but having the English names separated from the scientific names makes it harder. Maias (talk) 03:28, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
In what way do you find it harder? I did start a discussion about this on the talk page of the list, but no one has advanced the discussion there to date. I think the list missing common names are a separate list to the list missing binomial names, so I think the arrangement of the page is reasonable. Of course, there may be better ways to organise the page. I suppose that where both the common name and binomial name are missing for a species, then they could be put together, but that looks like a lot of work. I suppose all common names could be associated with a binomial and all binomials could be associated with a commons name, but that also sounds like a lot of work. Snowman (talk) 08:44, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
I've been doing a few, I assume that where the blanks arise from splits, we do a redirect to the lumped species until someone stubs the new species? So far I've mainly stuck to name changes, but seeking guidance before starting on the splits Jimfbleak - talk to me? 09:51, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
I have been looking at the IOC lists to compare - that makes it pretty straightforward. Casliber (talk · contribs) 11:00, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes, I have done a few, and they can usually be worked out. I did have some momentary confusion between (for example) - Yellow-bellied Warbler, Yellowish-bellied Warbler and Yellow-bellied Bush Warbler - and it would have easier if the scientific names were bracketed with them. But maybe my methodology is suboptimal. Maias (talk) 12:49, 23 May 2011 (UTC)

@Jim, I guess just bring the splits here and we can review. I am finding other issues - for instance, at the IOC list here the Long-tailed Tit is still called thus, yet all its relatives are renamed Bushtits, and we have Long-tailed Bushtit listed on the Wikipedia:WikiProject Birds/Missing IOC names page. Are some of the IOC bird list pages outdated then....? Casliber (talk · contribs) 12:37, 23 May 2011 (UTC)

And we have the Restless Flycatcher and Paperbark Flycatcher Myiagra nana - the [IOC] says it splits on basis of Christidis and Boles 2008, but then you look at the original C&B 2008 shy away from calling the split, although presenting evidence which strongly suggests it. I might make a page explaining this, or can just leave a note on the species page, what do folks think? Casliber (talk · contribs) 12:47, 23 May 2011 (UTC)

Schodde & Mason (1999) split it. I can easily make a stub which others can argue about whether to call it a species or subspecies. Maias (talk) 13:02, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, reckon that's the way to go...Casliber (talk · contribs) 13:05, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for the start. Have added some info. Maias (talk) 14:45, 23 May 2011 (UTC)

Speedy deletion nomination of Flying High Bird Sanctuary

A tag has been placed on Flying High Bird Sanctuary, a page within the WP birds project, by User:OlYeller21 requesting that it be speedily deleted from Wikipedia. This has been done under section A7 of the criteria for speedy deletion, because the article appears to be about an organization or company, but it does not indicate how or why the subject is important or significant: that is, why an article about that subject should be included in an encyclopedia. Under the criteria for speedy deletion, such articles may be deleted at any time. Please see the guidelines for what is generally accepted as notable. Anyone is welcome to comment or edit the article. Snowman (talk) 07:37, 23 May 2011 (UTC)

It looks like the article has been kept for the moment; nevertheless, referenced additions to the article will be welcome. Snowman (talk) 08:15, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
It certainly needs proper refs, three are to the zoo's site (not independent, one to a list of local businesses, and a 404, now removed along with redundant EL (already linked as ref) Jimfbleak - talk to me? 18:05, 23 May 2011 (UTC)

Exception to IOC name for Cacicus melanicterus?

I just want to raise this issue before someone changes the name automatically.

All the English-language authorities cited at the Avibase page call Cacicus melanicterus the Yellow-winged Cacique (I might add that Howell and Webb use this name too), except the IOC, which calls it the Mexican Cacique. Should we really go along with names that the IOC uses but no one else does?

Possibly relevant points:

  • This bird is restricted to Mexico and Guatemala.
  • One Spanish name for this bird at Avibase means "Mexican Cacique". The other means "Yellow-winged Cacique".
  • There's one other cacique in Mexico, the Yellow-billed Cacique (which is in a different genus and is found south to Peru).
  • There's a Golden-winged Cacique in South America.

JerryFriedman (Talk) 16:48, 23 May 2011 (UTC)

Hi Jerry. There are several salient points to be injected into this discourse. However, I premise that in my personal opinion that dealing with this might be premature. The rationale behind the name change, and I have no inside information, might be that somebody made a decision to distance this particular nomenclature from Golden-winged Cacique in view of a possible taxonomical revision of tribe Cacicini of Icterinae. The bird was originally described I believe as genus Cassiculus, and a recent revision seems to support that this particular bird is phylogenetically basal to other birds now in genus Cacicus. Further, it must always be remembered when dealing with the IOC indications that the scope of the list, is not to function as a taxonomical authority. People are so doing, but I think this is so because many are exasperated at the slowness with which an authoritative text tax list is taking to be published. The IOC list has filled the vacuum in the interim, but, it is not a taxonomical authority. It is a working list that must be peer-reviewed and homologated to a text tax list. To see:

Steve Pryor (talk) 18:55, 23 May 2011 (UTC)

Thanks, Steve. I admit I don't see how changing "Yellow-winged Cacique" to "Mexican Cacique" clarifies the possible relationship you describe. I quite agree about not using the IOC as an authority, though (and to my taste, the authorities often move too fast, not too slowly).
The Boyd link was interesting. Do you consider him reliable? I see people are saying the Yellow-billed Cacique is in a different subfamily from the other caciques. If it gets a name change accordingly, I'll like "Mexican Cacique" for Cacicus/Cassiculus melanicterus better. And do I understand correctly that my neighbors the eastern Great-tailed Grackles are closer to Boat-tailed Grackle than to western Great-taileds, but interbreed with western Great-taileds and (according to BNA on line) not with Boat-taileds? Very interesting. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 04:48, 25 May 2011 (UTC)
Jerry, in the sense, and I was just taking a shot in the dark, that it distances the nomenclature from a Cacicus (would make sense if they really do resurrect the generic epithet Cassiculus for this bird, i.e., Yellow-winged/Golden-winged might confuse some into thinking they are congeneric if they really are not) having a somewhat resemblant common name. I consider Boyd insightful, methodical, and above all having a lot more time than I do to track down all of these justificational papers. Further, he seems to be generally speaking not a PSC'er, and I am not either. As for the authorities moving fast, or slow, well, in view of the vacuum that has existed since the publication of the HM 3°Ed, in 2003, and which to date constitutes the last reputable world text tax work, there has just been a flood of new information giving us insight into many of the phylogenetic conundrums that have always existed since the days of assigning relationships based on plumage, and anatomy. Especially impacted in the interim is higher avian phylogeny. We are now going on nine years and a lot of people are anxiously awaiting the new HM. The Clements 6° Ed. had a chance to stick a finger in the dike, but they totally flubbed it, and basically took themselves out of the game in the minds of most serious avian phylogeneticists. Most of the latter, are now collaborating in some manner with the editorial board preparing the new HM.Steve Pryor (talk) 16:17, 25 May 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for the interesting comments. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 22:05, 27 May 2011 (UTC)

Request for re-rating of the Red-winged Starling article

Hi all! I have made some edits to the Red-winged Starling article and expanded it a little. I would like to send a respectful request for someone to rate the article and upgrade it beyond the Start-class rating, as I have no idea how to do that myself. Many thanks! (Drakenwolf (talk) 11:00, 25 May 2011 (UTC))

Hi Drakenwolf! My opinion is that, although you have improved the article, it still rates as Start-class, though approaching C-class, and that it does need more inline citations. Please keep going - its a good start. Maias (talk) 14:02, 25 May 2011 (UTC)
Similarly, I would not put this article above a Start class owing to sparse in-line references. If you have difficulties with formatting when you start to add more in-line references, then I am fairly sure editors will help you with the formatting. On the wiki is best not to rate articles that you have worked on a lot, as there would be a conflict of interest (except uprating a Stub to a Start class by one of the main editors is usually acceptable). Snowman (talk) 19:12, 25 May 2011 (UTC)

Plate-billed Mountain Toucan

  • It looks like a new enthusiastic editor has expanded Plate-billed Mountain Toucan and may need some assistance. It looks like the three images he has added are copyright violations. I have added the flickrreview tag to the images on commons, so that than will be noticed by bots and reviewers. Snowman (talk) 23:02, 25 May 2011 (UTC)
The bot tagged it as being of uncertain origin. However, a quick human check shows all three are no good. How do we ask for them to be removed? I've posted something on the article's talk page, and will add something on the user's talk page as well. MeegsC | Talk 00:38, 26 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes, a bot tags them, then the images get a human review, and some are marked for deletion, which usually follow quite some. I thought that they would all get speedy deleted, but in this case two have been tagged as uncertain origin and the uploader has got a message on his talk page, and if a satisfactory licence is not given in seven days the images are then deleted. Snowman (talk) 20:57, 26 May 2011 (UTC)

Missing IOC names - Sind Sparrow

Along with other project members, I've been fixing some of the missing IOC names listed at Wikipedia:WikiProject Birds/Missing IOC names. Most are uncontroversial or bot-generated stubs. However, according to the IOC, Sind Sparrow should be moved to Jungle Sparrow. I saw that Innonata and Shyamal have both heavily edited the article, any views on where to have the main article (the other name would then be fixed as a redirect)? Jimfbleak - talk to me? 15:31, 27 May 2011 (UTC)

I really wonder if it is a versioning or typographical error in some list. Here are some relevant extracts of some email communications from that time - Frank Gill wrote on Dec 12, 2009 saying that ...I suspect that we dropped "Sind" from Sind Jungle Sparrow to conform to our guidelines because there was only one "Jungle Sparrow", but in the process moved in the wrong direction. I'll check with others on the IOC team about this, and get back to you and P C Rasmussen agreed with this noting that I certainly agree with Shyamal on this---Sind Sparrow is a great name for all the reasons he mentioned, while Jungle Sparrow is much less so. It doesn't even occur in what most people (at least outside of South Asia) think of as "jungle". I will defer to others on "Sind" vs. "Sindh", although my personal view is that there's no need to make minor alterations in place-name spelling that could themselves change again. - the subsequent IOC list version dropped "Jungle" and the change in the new version certainly sounds puzzling. Shyamal (talk) 15:46, 27 May 2011 (UTC)
Actually the IOC has it right on the primary list, it is possible that one of their spreadsheets is out of date. Hope the missing names list is made from the right source. Shyamal (talk) 15:51, 27 May 2011 (UTC)
I have it Sind on my updated list (not really the IOC list but the HM converted according to the IOC indications). I agree with Shyamal - this must have come from just one list that was then updated, or in this case, reconverted to the previous nomenclature. Jungle Sparrow is dumb. It is also confusing. The Cinnamon Ibon is now known to be a Passeridae, and it inhabits jungles, and I am sure there are other sparrows that do so as well. Sind (or Sindh) makes sense.Steve Pryor (talk) 16:59, 27 May 2011 (UTC)
OK, link fixed as redirect from Jungle. Peccavi Jimfbleak - talk to me? 18:58, 27 May 2011 (UTC)
I trust there's no bird named after Oudh. :-) —JerryFriedman (Talk) 15:23, 28 May 2011 (UTC)

African Crake

I'm planning to take this to FAC soon. Any comments, copyediting or additional info welcome. In particular, I can't find anything on the typical lifespan. Jimfbleak - talk to me? 10:40, 1 June 2011 (UTC)

You need to either: put a comma after Crex egregia in the first sentence OR remove the comma before it and put it in parens, towit: (Crex egregia). The parens options seems to be what most bird FA's use, I think. I've added a wikispecies box at the bottom. BarkingMoon (talk) 11:25, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
Jim and I have our differences on scientific names - I like parentheses (makes a change from commas), he likes commas. I'll take a look...Casliber (talk · contribs) 11:57, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
I'm a convert! Changed to () if only because that's what I had in Water Rail. Thanks for EL wikisp link. Jimfbleak - talk to me? 12:02, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
Jim, I doubt you will find anything either. I am presuming life-span "in the wild". Until now, this sort of information lacks for most bird species. What little information there is comes from banding recaptures, and there is usually a problem of sample size in particular for those species where widespread banding is not practised. Even the closest living relative, the Corn Crake, in spite of it being widely banded in Europe, is data-deficient as far as the average life-span. In general all Rallidae is data-deficient for the life-spans. Fulica supposedly lives in the wild to about 20 years. Between you and me, and certainly this has no corroboration, were I to guess, well, somewhere from 10-12 years considering its size.Steve Pryor (talk) 12:04, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
That's what I suspected, just clutching at straws really, thanks Jimfbleak - talk to me? 17:31, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
If we are going for the binomial in brackets and not emboldened (as here), then shall I change dozens of species pages to be consistent with this style with semi-automated software? I will need to rewrite the regex to change the version with commas to the version with round brackets. Earlier today, I followed this format on the Osprey GA and someone has reverted it. I think that it is a wiki guideline to have a minimum of emboldened text, and I assume that this is because a lot of emboldened blocks of text can look untidy and make it difficult to focus on the important emboldened points. Snowman (talk) 17:38, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
I vote for this format: Common Name (scientific name) (with italics marks inside the (). BarkingMoon (talk) 20:11, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
This opens up a can of we discuss this here, or include other taxa where common names are used (vertebrates) and get uniformity on two aspects (parentheses vs commas, and bolding of scientific name)...Casliber (talk · contribs) 21:30, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
Yes, this discussion might be going out on a limb. I think that liaison with the WP tree of life or/and other relevant WP projects would help to insure uniformity on the wiki and reduce confusion. Snowman (talk) 21:45, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
A long discussion in the past. Shyamal (talk) 02:11, 2 June 2011 (UTC)


There's a query about why we don't bold binomials here. Can anyone unearth the discussion? Jimfbleak - talk to me? 06:07, 2 June 2011 (UTC)

Please ignore, I've now read the bit above Jimfbleak - talk to me? 07:23, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
Actually Jim, I think you want to link to the discussion we had about bolding the scientific name. The bit you linked to has the discussion about whether the scientific name should be in parentheses or just comma-delimited. MeegsC | Talk 12:32, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
For what it is worth, I have always found more elegant the parenthetical inclusion of the italicized scientific binomen (but, not bolded). Further, and perhaps the problem does not present itself on the wiki, there are sometimes occasions to have to include within brackets, in the case of generic names (in the case of conflicting taxonomical authorities), and within second parentheses, in the case of a specific name but with the race being considered as a good species. When this happens, it would seem preferable to already be in parentheses from the get go. As far as bolding, I am rather indifferent. If bolding is used then I would see it favorably only for the Common Name.Steve Pryor (talk) 13:45, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
interesting discussion, but as noted it doesn't actually address the bolding of the scientific name in the opening sentence. I bolded Pandion haliaetus as this is the general practice with redirected names and scientific names that are in the opening sentence. I was subsequently reverted twice, and thus my wondering about the discussion. --Kevmin § 17:36, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
I have seen all possibilities (bolding and not of either or both names) in many different areas in Wikipedia:WikiProject Biology. I think if you bold one you should bold both. After all both names are valid. Some people only know the species by the binomial name and some species don't even have a common name. Why not give both names the same treatment. Bolding helps to highlight the species one is reading about. So my vote is to bold both names. Dger (talk) 22:05, 2 June 2011 (UTC)

Okay, I will set out a voting thingumyjig soemwhere, either at MOS or WP:Biology. Give me a few minutes. Now live at Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Biology#Consensus_how_scientific_names_are_displayed_in_the_lead_of_species_articles_listed_under_common_names Casliber (talk · contribs) 23:59, 2 June 2011 (UTC)

Black Bishop

I working on this here: User:BarkingMoon/sandbox. I can't even find enough on the web to make it DYK eligible. Casliber has agreed to look in his uni library for me, but if anyone else can help expand it, I'd appreciate it. Feel free to edit the sandbox directly or send me the info. Thanks. BarkingMoon (talk) 19:05, 1 June 2011 (UTC)

It can be complicated uniting article histories after working on a fork in a sub-page sandbox; see Wikipedia:How to fix cut-and-paste moves. I think it would be better to work directly on the proper article article, and I think it would be better to request a page history merge as soon as possible before anyone edits the proper article while the sandbox exists. Snowman (talk) 21:21, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for the edits! ... is still looking for more info BarkingMoon (talk) 21:25, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
Request for an administrator to merge the page histories as soon as possible (before anyone edits the main article and produces parallel edit histories). Snowman (talk) 21:27, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
The problem with doing that merge just now is that you only get 10 days to do an expansion for DYK and given that we've hit a roadblock with info here, that's a problem. BarkingMoon (talk) 22:22, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
I have merged the text and now an administrator needs to merge the page histories. Please note that only the edits from 17:53, 30 May 2011 are relevant on User:BarkingMoon/sandbox. It really would be better to edit the main page rather than make a fork in a subpage. Everyone else does DYKs on the main page. I think that there are grounds for disqualifying DYKs of existing pages that have been worked on a long time in a subpage. Snowman (talk) 22:24, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
I prefer doing them in subpages and you haven't addressed the problem with getting this expanded enough in time for DYK. BarkingMoon (talk) 22:27, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
There are guidelines about forking main-pages in a sub-page and we have discussed this hear before. Have you merged any other forked main pages and was the edit history merged? Snowman (talk) 22:29, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
You are avoiding the issue.BarkingMoon (talk) 22:31, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
I think the spirit of DYK is to expand the main article in a certain time. I see that you have created Olivia Ward, American Women's Voluntary Services, Genevieve Foster, Agnes Hewes in a sub-page and used the sub-page to create a main page, which is fine; however, I am not entirely sure if the edit histories need to follow the moved text, and I note that you have done a cut and page move rather than a page move for these newly created articles. Forking main pages in a sub-page is different and I am fairly sure that the edit histories need to be merged and I see this has not been done on the forked ornithology articles. Snowman (talk) 22:48, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
As I said before you get 10 days to do a expansion for DYK in mainspace and as I said before when you hit a info block like here, that potential is in serious jeopardy. Now, how do you intend to resolve that? BarkingMoon (talk) 22:56, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
BarkingMoon, the timing counts from when it hits mainspace. It is generally easy to show when that occurs. Most bird articles change little over months so I recommend working in mainspace. Sometimes I've hit snags and just had to accept that I can't do it in the time period allowed. The reason behind the importance of the history is that so we can be clear who wrote what when. As an admin I can do a history merge, not too difficult but can be a little finicky. I will do it later today as I have to attend to some real life chores for a few hours. Casliber (talk · contribs) 23:03, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
I know. Snowmanradio has now put the updates I have in mainspace and the clock is ticking because of that. I came here because my resources are exhausted and I need help getting it expanded 5x in the less than 10 next days. BarkingMoon (talk) 23:07, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
User Barkingmoon has also set up a page history merge to do on Yellow-crowned Bishop. To the administrator doing the page history merges; the source page (User:BarkingMoon/sandbox) has the continuous edit history of about six articles so the edits for the separate pages need to be picked out. Snowman (talk) 23:22, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
While it may seem unfair to be under the time constraint, BarkingMoon, Snowman's heart is in the right place with this. It's basically to keep the article's history clean for any reader that wants to see who added what, and when. If I can make a suggestion, the next time you're going to update an already-existing article, it might be better to work on your notes in your sandbox, rather than the actual article. Otherwise, things can get lost when you move it back into article space; for example, if someone has made an interwiki link in the meantime (which happens all the time), you'll delete that link when you copy your article back — unless you go through every single edit that was made on the original article before you do the paste and add them back in afterwards! Or (if you copy the whole article), be prepared to copy it back piecemeal, so that future readers can tell which bits you've added. That's what I typically do. I've copied the beak article into User:MeegsC/Beak for example, and am working on segments there. It allows me to see the whole article, but to work on bits at a time without having to finish everything off properly if I'm called away before truly finishing. But it doesn't compromise the article history in the process. And if I'm working "against the clock", it allows me to get all my research done before I try to modify the live article! Once I've got things written the way I want it, I can check to see what's been added to the real article, and add in whatever I need so that those bits don't get deleted (and so the edit history continues to match). And then I copy pieces over a section at a time. Hope this helps! MeegsC | Talk 23:30, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
I felt obliged to do the page merge urgently, because at the present time the main-space article has not been edited for a while, and in this state the page history merge a lot easier. Once someone edits the mainspace article there are two parallel edit histories and that causes a lot of problems when merging edit histories. Continuous page histories are vital for the copyright status of the article. My priority is to protect the legal copyright status of these disrupted articles by maintaining continuous edit histories. Snowman (talk) 23:34, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
I know his heart is in the right place but he's also started the clock prematurely, so to speak. I'll also try not to cause this problem again. Hopefully, Cas and someone(s) else can find more info and we can all get DYK credit. I like the "notes" and "piecemeal" ideas! Thanks all. PS TO ADMINS: DON'T FORGET White-winged Widowbird. I highly doubt there's a lawyer watching my sandbox ;-) BarkingMoon (talk) 23:37, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
Just because someone thinks they can get away with it in the absence of a lawyer they should not jeopardise the edit histories and the copyright status of articles. I have been reading the guidelines on Wikipedia:Workpages and Wikipedia:Subpages, but I need a bit more time to understand these and also look back at the archived discussion from the WP Bird talk page. I recall people did not approve the editing of three Indian birds in subpages being rather remote from universal collaboration. I find the guidelines a bit ambiguous. I think the guidelines say that sub-pages relevant to existing articles are best put in the article talk sub-page for Start class and larger articles, which implies that it is recommended to work on Stubs directly. Are the notes method and piecemeal method within the guidelines? Snowman (talk) 23:57, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
Geesh Snowman. Are you now seriously going to tell me that I can't gather information and work out wordings in my own sandbox before adding them to a mainspace article? Isn't that what sandboxes are for? Or are you suggesting I do all that in a word processor on my own computer now? MeegsC | Talk 01:41, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
Here here, touche!BarkingMoon (talk) 02:08, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
After requesting help on article expansion, I feel that any pursuant collaboration should be based on the main space of an article and its talk page,or perhaps rarely in workspace in a sub-page to the main article's talk space. Snowman (talk) 00:09, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
User space (See Wikipedia:USER#Pages_that_look_like_articles.2C_copy_pages.2C_project_pages) is not meant to be edited by other users except under special circumstances - breaking categories, transclusions, violations and so on. And an editor therefore is entitled to keep the personal edit history of the sandbox version private. Editing in someone else's userspace would involve the usual real-world norms of introduction and mutual understanding. Snowman, the reason why WP:IAR exists is that all the real-world norms are still valid and not everything is ruled by written policies. Shyamal (talk) 03:22, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
As far as I am aware Wikipedia:Ignore all rules is not meant to include ignore copyright laws by jeopardising page edit histories. "Wikipedia's licensing requires that attribution be given to the original author"; see Wikipedia:Copying within Wikipedia. User BarkingMoon invited people to work on his sandbox, and I think that this included an invitation to fix problems of any type there. It is clear that User BarkingMoon was jeopardising page edit histories, which perhaps should have been picked up earlier. An administrator who does a lot of page history merges kindly repaired seven pages that User BarkingMoon worked on. He also provided User BarkingMoon with some advice; see talk page. I note that User BarkingMoon says that he will "try not to cause this problem again". Several editors have put in valuable time and effort to discuss and repair seven page edit histories. There is nine days left to complete a possible DYK on the Black Bishop. Common Blackbirds are singing in the garden. Snowman (talk) 11:03, 2 June 2011 (UTC)


Can we get back to the original question, are there editors who can help get the article to Start and DYK level in the time left? I'm having a lot of trouble finding more info.BarkingMoon (talk) 11:30, 2 June 2011 (UTC)

I've got Birds of Kenya and Northern Tanzania, describes plumages inc males of the two eastern races, females, juveniles and songs. email me if you think it's useful and I'll send a scan, probably as rtf so you can edit it Jimfbleak - talk to me? 12:12, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
Thanks Jim. I've sent you an email.BarkingMoon (talk) 20:46, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
Actually it's only 5 days you get, so we have 4 left.BarkingMoon (talk) 01:05, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
Good team effort so far, but still need behavior info. If nothing else perhaps generic bishop behavior? BarkingMoon (talk) 10:08, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
Try obtaining Craig, Adrian J. F. K. "Behaviour and evolution in the genus Euplectes". Journal of Ornithology. 121 (2): 144–161. doi:10.1007/BF01642928.  via library desk if you, like me, do not have access. Shyamal (talk) 10:30, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
Given the history merge, I nom'd this at DYK today to get it inside the deadline. It's 5x, but could still use more behavior. I've listed all 5 who helped edit it for getting DYK credit. BarkingMoon (talk) 18:48, 3 June 2011 (UTC)

Article in Ibis that you all might find interesting...

Not been around much lately, but a friend pointed this out which I had to share. Why ornithologists should embrace and contribute to Wikipedia. Interesting stuff. Sabine's Sunbird talk 19:13, 3 June 2011 (UTC)

  • That article seems to me to concentrate on text in wiki articles without mentioning images or WikiMedia Commons. The Wiki also needs contributions in the form of photographs and images, which ornithologist could upload. Snowman (talk) 20:38, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
  • It doesn't surprise me that would be the focus of a journal article, but if more scientists start contributing I imagine they will bring images with them! Sabine's Sunbird talk 21:23, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
  • What is the "History Flow tool"? Snowman (talk) 20:40, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
I don't know as I have not come across the term - wow, interesting. I think from my discussions on birdwatching mailing lists and seeing flickr etc., the subject of photography and donating them under a commercial licence can be a delicate one and needs to be broached with a degree of diplomacy and caution, but I think Sabine's Sunbird is right in that more users bring more photos, especially with the availabilty of good cameras these days. Casliber (talk · contribs) 23:17, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
He just means the History button. You can "flow" through the history of the article. If he's not (yet) a regular user or contributor, he may not be familiar with the terms. On the plus side, it's absolutely brilliant that a high-end journal like this is encouraging its readers to contribute! MeegsC | Talk 00:26, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
There is a visualization tool by a team from IBM - - last I tried it out, it needed to be run on your desktop (a Java application) and you need to dump and download history XML files from Wikipedia to do the analysis offline. Not too easy to use, unless someone has made an online version somewhere. Shyamal (talk) 07:05, 4 June 2011 (UTC)

Bird article standards

Where is there a description of the difference of article standards, such as Start, C, B, GA, etc? Is there one specifically for birds? I know GA and FA/FL need formal reviews and that's about it. BarkingMoon (talk) 11:42, 4 June 2011 (UTC)

Not too much really leave 'B' for almost ready for GA - all referenced and has just about everything you can think of in it. 'Stub' is 1-3 sentences, 'Start' is a basic outline and 'C' is between 'Start' and 'B'...oh there are some more formal definitions somewhere...aah, there. Casliber (talk · contribs) 12:57, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
See Wikipedia:WikiProject Birds/Assessment, where there is a table of article Class. Snowman (talk) 13:32, 4 June 2011 (UTC)

image in White Stork taxobox

four are possible. None are perfect, but getting consensus on this'd be nice (unless anyone wants to go photograph some...) See Talk:White_Stork#Taxobox_image Casliber (talk · contribs)

Mark for archival. DummySig (talk) 14:47, 7 June 2011 (UTC)


I am thinking about making a navbox for Ploceidae family using the list on the family page. Is this list up-to-date, or are there any recent splits, controversies, or taxonomy changes. Snowman (talk) 15:34, 4 June 2011 (UTC)

Snow, it is all screwed up. I am checking it out now, but it will take a little time. Much of the higher phylogeny has changed. Real fast, but I will give you a better breakdown later, Anomalospiza has been moved into Viduidae. Histurgops; Pseudonigrita; Philetairus; and Plocepasser are all Passeridae. Malimbus flavipes is now Ploceus flavipes. Plus, there are some splits involving genus Ploceus, and quite a few nomenclatural changes (if, as I seem to have understood, the wiki is trying now to conform to the IOC indications).Steve Pryor (talk) 17:12, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
I am glad I asked. It is only an idea, so if it is too difficult or too time consuming it would probably be best to move onto something else. As far as I understand, IOC does a lot of bird names, but not taxonomy. I think the up-to-date taxonomy would be what is accepted by the most authorities. Sometimes more than one taxonomy system is briefly described on the wiki. I can only do the nav box if other editors fix the species list on the family page first, because I am not well placed to find out about recent advances in bird taxonomy. It would take me a long time to find out about all the recent taxonomy changes, but I could write a nav box and roll it out quite quickly. Snowman (talk) 17:42, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
OK. Here goes. In conformance to the IOC (and by the way, I don't think is a great site for downloading taxonomy!). Juba Weaver, and not Salvadori's Weaver. Bertram's Weaver, and not Bertrand's Weaver. Tanzanian Masked Weaver, and not Tanzania Masked-weaver. Vieillot's Black Weaver, and not Viellot's Weaver. Eastern Golden Weaver, and not African Golden-weaver. Anything having the hyphenated Masked-weaver, or Golden-weaver have undergone the elision of the hyphens, and are now Masked Weaver, and Golden Weaver. Continuing: Taveta Weaver, and not Taveta Golden-weaver. Principe Weaver, and not Principe Golden-weaver. Finn's Weaver, and not Yellow Weaver. Black-breasted Weaver, and not Bengal Weaver. Dark-backed Weaver, and not Forest Weaver. Pachyphantes has been moved into genus Ploceus as Ploceus superciliosus. Yellow-legged Weaver (Ploceus flavipes, and not Yellow-legged Malimbe (Malimbus flavipes). Cassin's Malimbe and not Black-throated Malimbe. Gola Malimbe, and not Ballman's Malimbe. Blue-billed Malimbe, and not Gray's Malimbe. Comoros Fody, and not Red-headed Fody. Zanzibar Red Bishop, and not Zanzibar Bishop. Yellow-mantled Widowbird, and not Yellow-shouldered Widowbird. Montane Widowbird, and not Buff-shouldered Widowbird. Scaly-feathered Weaver, and not Scaly Weaver.
As I had mentioned above, Anomalospiza, Histurgops, Pseudonigrita, Philetairus, and Plocepasser are no longer part of Ploceidae. The list from zipcodezoo for Ploceus has a couple of unexplainable holes, i.e., species that were already recognized and should have been there even not considering splits. They are Bannerman's Weaver (Ploceus bannermani); and Bates's Weaver (Ploceus batesi). Splits: Foudia ementissima aldabrana is now split, Aldabra Fody (Foudia aldabrana) monotypic. From P. velatus - Katanga Masked Weaver (Ploceus katangae). Presumably from P. reichardi - Lufira Masked Weaver (Ploceus ruweti).Steve Pryor (talk) 17:44, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
Over the next few days I might change the wiki page names to IOC names as the first step, as a nomenclature exercise only using semi-automatic software (writing my own regexs) on dozens of pages, which would probably take much longer if done entirely manually. Then there is the taxonomy to sort out before writing the navbox, and taxonomy updates need to be referenced on the family page. I am not well placed to find out about recent changes to taxonomy, so I will not be able to get any further by myself. Snowman (talk) 18:01, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
Snow, you should have my e-mail. Drop me a line and I will send you the updated IOC list in a much more understandable form than that found on the IOC site.Steve Pryor (talk) 18:16, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
I have fixed most of the IOC names, but I came across some problems, which I have listed below. Also the taxonomy on the family wiki article needs bringing up to date. I shall not attempt a taxonomy review, because there are other editors that will be able to do this with access to all the relevant up-to-date sources. Snowman (talk) 19:47, 4 June 2011 (UTC)

Tasks and problems

I am afraid this just went right over my head. Is there a question in there somewhere? No taxonomical changes that I am aware of.Steve Pryor (talk) 21:51, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
According to the IOC that has accepted the split from eminentissima. New "split" species, though this split has been flirted with several times in recent years.Steve Pryor (talk) 22:12, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
Is this widely accepted? Should the wiki have a species page on this newly split species? There is a brief mention of Aldabra Fody (Foudia aldabrana) on the Comoros Fody article. Snowman (talk) 13:13, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
Snow, this again gets into the intentions of the wiki vis-a-vis their desire to use, and in what degree, the IOC indications as a taxonomic authority. Therefore, in this case, I can only say that the HM 4° Ed., save other delays, is slated to come out at the end of this year. This particular split for me probably is in that gray area where I would like to see the stance of the HM after peer-review. The fact that this "split" has been so quixotic, I mean sometimes yes, and sometimes relumped, says to me that it might not hold up to rigorous peer-review. A new species page might be premature.Steve Pryor (talk) 14:18, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
Unless we split the two, the page should be moved back to Red-headed Fody. See this earlier version, which explains the differences between the names (Red-headed when combined; Aldabra and Comoros when split). I have no strong opinion on the taxonomic version chosen because I really don't know much about this group, but using Comoros Fody for the combined species would be a novel idea not supported by any major authority. IOC is our standard authority for Eng. names, but not taxonomy. The logical conclusion from that is that when the IOC species-level taxonomy differs from that used on wiki, the IOC English name falls out if it differs from that used by any authority under the taxonomy used on wiki (otherwise, we're applying names in novel ways, i.e. WP:OR). • Rabo³ • 14:39, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
Yes, good point, and I agree. It should be rolled back to the previous nomenclature.Steve Pryor (talk) 15:11, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
Of course. Earlier version now shown. I was wrong in thinking that the wiki had to follow one of the IOC names; however, in this case, the article not entirely about either one of the split species listed by IOC. Snowman (talk) 15:16, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
The IOC has it right. It is a question of a secondary error in transcription of the form of the original describing subspecific epithet (by the way, by Reichenow as psammacromia which makes its attribution to Reichenow, with the spelling psammocromius in the taxbox incorrect), that was then perpetuated in time. This sort of thing occasionally happens, and it is because it is not easy to go back through all of the acta ornithologica through time to arrive at the original first mentions, and first descriptions, many of which are in different languages. A lot of these old acta are not digitalized and it requires usually somebody leafing through the old manuscripts in some academic setting that have these old volumes. Somebody just noticed that it was not right. In these cases, save other possible protocollary impediments, the ICZN protocols kick in on a question of taxonomic precedence. Pryor (talk) 21:50, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
Sorry guys, my mistake. I simply misspelled it. It is ruweti.Steve Pryor (talk) 14:05, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
  • Do any of the genera have common names apart from Fodies? Snowman (talk) 12:27, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
  • Position of Cuckoo Finch also called Parasitic Weaver (A. imberbis) is a problem. Snowman (talk) 12:05, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
  • I see from IOC (should that be IOU): Donaldson-Smith's Sparrow-Weaver - the hyphen is wrong in ver 2.9 drave.. Donaldson was his middle name (Redman, comm)". Why not use Smith's Sparrow-Weaver? Snowman (talk) 12:18, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Yes, it has been changed to IOU, however, to find the site I still google IOC bird. IOU bird doesn't cut it yet, so as long as we both know that we are talking about the same thing...Steve Pryor (talk) 17:41, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Why use the middle name at all. Does the binomial need changing as well. Surely the common and and the binomial should be named by using modifications of the word "Smith". Snowman (talk) 18:31, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Well, I can hazard a guess. My guess would be that it has now entered into the historic vernacular through the years of common usage. It would doubtless create confusion to now call the birds involved simply Smith's something or other (I think there are only two, a nightjar, and the Plocepasser). There are certain ICZN protocols that can supercede the normally followed naming protocols just because something has been known as this or that for so long that to radically change it would only create confusion, so they just accept the mistake, and justify the mistake making it no longer a mistake as it were!Steve Pryor (talk) 06:32, 7 June 2011 (UTC)


Are there any updates needed to the genera and species listed on the Ploceidae family article or to the list of species listed on the Ploceus genus article? Can these lists be used to make the navbox for the Ploceidae family? Are there any recent extinctions? Snowman (talk) 13:34, 5 June 2011 (UTC)

No, no recent extinctions.Steve Pryor (talk) 16:19, 5 June 2011 (UTC)

Pending comments and suggestions over the next few days, I plan to write the navbox based on the lists on the wiki Ploceidae family page and the Ploceus genus page. Snowman (talk) 15:27, 5 June 2011 (UTC)

Snow, the zipcodezoo list has problems. I would suggest this list: as the prime referent for this genus. It has the two "missing species", plus the two split species, and also the generally accepted accomodation of Yellow-legged Weaver from genus Malimbus into Ploceus.Steve Pryor (talk) 16:18, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
I have had a look at the ref and the website is well constructed. Is the website by an economist on ornithology usable on the wiki? We had a lot of trouble owing to sourcing an enthusiasts website during the McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II FA. Snowman (talk) 20:21, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
Well, certainly people interested in ornithology have come from all walks of life. What is important is that they have an analytical mind, and do things seriously. Boyd falls in this category for me. He seems to be held in high esteem by those redacting the IOC site, and there are many links directly from the IOC site, to his site. You could just drop him a note.Steve Pryor (talk) 21:00, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
At this juncture, I see no need to write to the author, because he has provided an introduction about his website. See under the section heading "A Guide to the New Taxonomy" in the introduction of his website. He says "This set of web pages contains a guess at what the avian part of the tree of life might look like." As far as I am aware this element of guessing apparently incorporated into his website has implications regarding WP:RS. Comments welxome. Snowman (talk) 08:17, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Yes, I am aware of it. This is why I limited my suggestion only to the use of the list for genus Ploceus. Some of his interpretations especially regarding higher phylogeny I do not agree with, but then I have those same misgivings also for some of the higher phylogeny now accepted on the IOC list. Unfortunately, we are still in a sort of maelstrom of conflicting opinions. This is why so many are waiting for the new HM to come out. Cracraft is heading up the editorial subgroup dealing with the higher phylogeny, and I am sure that much that we now find disorderly because of the conflicting voices, will become less problematic once the volume is published.Steve Pryor (talk) 09:49, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
  • I have fixed moving Yellow-legged Weaver from genus Malimbus into Ploceus using as a reference. Snowman (talk) 08:38, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
  • Re: missing species and split species. The Red-headed Fody is currently not split on the wiki (pending adequate referencing and evidence for a split). I think the other splits are already represented by the presence of wiki species pages: Katanga Masked Weaver (Ploceus katangae) and Lufira Masked Weaver (Ploceus ruweti), and these two are now added to genus list on genus page. The Katanga Masked Weaver article Stub needs an account of the recent split (regret I do not have references). Is this all done? Snowman (talk) 08:38, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
  • I am finding it difficult to trace the new names for the African Golden Weaver to update linked pages. Was the Yellow Weaver, Eastern Golden Weaver, Holub's Golden Weaver all once called the African Golden Weaver? For split species, I think changes to the common names need to be manually changed in the country lists. For direct one to one name changes, I can easily do these en mass with semi-automatic software as long as I have the the names changes written in to the script - and I have quite a lot that I have been dealing with now. Ideally, I think the recent splits should be documented in the species Stubs encase people are redirected to the wrong page or if they are still thinking of the old names. Perhaps some of the images need to be updates to the new names and new taxonomy. Snowman (talk) 10:05, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Will try and trace the history of the African Golden Weaver later. The answer to your question is, very probably. I have found that Avibase is useful for the synonyms. Yellow Weaver might have been used as a colloquial regional name within Africa. Will have to go into the historical synonyms for this. Updating now, The Eastern Golden Weaver is what the IOC now calls the former Yellow Weaver (subaureus). The Holub's Golden Weaver (prout IOC) was called the African Golden Weaver. If there exist any photos now needing redetermination as to the identity, for taxonomic reasons, just provide the links, and I will have a look.Steve Pryor (talk) 10:27, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
For changes in nomenclature, V. English Name Update Ver. 2.3 :

I have not been able to find when xanthops was split from subaureus (and I am presuming that it was once considered one species). It was surely considered a superspecies with subaureus, but now this thinking has fallen in disuse because there is range overlap with no hybridization.Steve Pryor (talk) 10:46, 6 June 2011 (UTC)

In any case, since the wiki is using now the IOC for the nomenclature, then, Eastern Golden Weaver (Ploceus subaureus), with races aureoflavus; tongensis; subaureus. Holub's Golden Weaver (Ploceus xanthops), monotypic. For any past nomenclatural synonyms, just remember that the scientific binomina remain the same, and all of the various common names can be had from Avibase.Steve Pryor (talk) 11:05, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
It is easier when the binomial and common name are together. Snowman (talk) 12:31, 6 June 2011 (UTC)


Template:Ploceidae - something for comments. Snowman (talk) 12:07, 6 June 2011 (UTC)

Comments: OK. Just went through it with a fine-tooth comb. Looks generally all right. I did not agree in any case with the IOC in the extrapolation of all of those passer-appearing genera into Passeridae. They belong here. As for any necessary adjustments, there are very few. They are: Bannerman's Weaver, and Bates's Weaver are still mysteriously AWOL. I would change Tanzania Masked Weaver to Tanzanian Masked Weaver. We just talked about E. psammocromius being wrong. Change to Euplectes psammacromius. Change the nomenclature of Chestnut-backed Sparrow-Weaver to Chestnut-mantled Sparrow-Weaver (forget the preceding, it is wrong. I don't know how to make that cancel line). Lastly, all birds having English Common Names including Donaldson-Smith, are now Donaldson Smith sans hyphen - the reason is that it was mistakenly believed to be a compound surname, but it is not. Donaldson is a middle name. Done this, let it fly because it should be all correct. By the way, if you need the updated accepted races, let me know, I just finished reviewing them all.Steve Pryor (talk) 16:39, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Snow, sorry, some of these things you had already mentioned. I just missed them until now. I think it is fairly well established by now through several studies that Anomalospiza does, in fact, belong in Viduidae. It should no longer be listed with Ploceidae.Steve Pryor (talk) 16:59, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Thank you for the through check - I have just been using your last comment to make corrections that should have been done on several pages, but were only done on one or two pages or not done at all. Plocepasser rufoscapulatus IOC 2.8 has Chestnut-backed Sparrow-Weaver, and I can not find the change to Chestnut-mantled Sparrow-Weaver. Snowman (talk) 17:33, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Let me double check. I have it changed on my "supposedly" current IOC list.Steve Pryor (talk) 17:42, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
You're right. I must be going nuts. However, knowing how I operate I got it from them, and then they probably changed it back.EDIT: No, that is not what happened. The list I am using was converted from the HM list, and that is their nomenclature. I just missed that the IOC list used different nomenclature, i.e. a leftover that I overlooked from the original HM.Steve Pryor (talk) 17:54, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Rolled out. Snowman (talk) 18:23, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Just one last thing, I will leave you to decide on this. That which is being listed here as Bar-winged Weaver (Ploceus angolensis) should probably not be in the genus, however, it is so scarse, and requisite material for studies so lacking, that its true phylogeny has not been deduced. The upshot, well, you might want to make a redirect to include the HBW taxonomy for this bird. They use the generic epithet Notiospiza. I am convinced that sooner or later it will be moved from genus Ploceus.Steve Pryor (talk) 18:43, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Please let WP:Birds know when (or if) this is elucidated. Snowman (talk) 08:27, 7 June 2011 (UTC)

Got a flickr account?

Can someone with a Flicr account look at this picture and contact the person to see if they'll release it under a license that can be used on commons? If they won't, perhaps some other photo of a Common Diving-petrel on flickr. Tks BarkingMoon (talk) 01:54, 5 June 2011 (UTC)

In the absence of a helpful reply so far, may I say that sometimes on the Wiki it is better to get things done yourself and at other times it is better to ask editors will special skills and knowledge. It is easy to get a Flickr account and you do not even have to upload any images. When asking photographers to change an image licence I would recommend explaining a bit about the copyright licences that can be used on the Wiki, and to reply to the author after he or she has changed the licence in appreciation and to provide him or her with a link to the wiki page showing the image. The more people that are active in uploading bird images from Flickr the better. Snowman (talk) 08:20, 6 June 2011 (UTC)

Newsletter for Birdwatchers back issues now available online

Upon my request, S. Sridhar, Publisher of Newsletter for Birdwatchers, has made the back issues of this publication available online:

Note: Since all domain names are universally blocked, I have put in a request to whitelist this one. In the meantime, I can't post a link to the site directly.

I hope this proves to be useful for editors looking for sources. – VisionHolder « talk » 10:32, 7 June 2011 (UTC)

  • Excuse my ignorance, but what do domain names indicate? Snowman (talk) 11:10, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
Another link was added here Shyamal (talk) 12:24, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
Snowman, see .cc Jimfbleak - talk to me? 05:22, 11 June 2011 (UTC)


'Semi-widely' accepted, but has lost some ground recently (briefly accepted by BirdLife International & IUCN; then removed again). Largely based on:
Gjershaug and Espmark (2006). Intra-individual and geographical variation in the calls of the Changeable Hawk-Eagle in India. Pp. 172-173 in Abstracts of the XXIV International Ornithological Congress, Hamburg.
Gjershaug, Diserudi, Rasmussen and Warakagoda (2008). An overlooked threatened species of eagle: Legge’s Hawk Eagle Nisaetus kelaarti (Aves: Accipitriformes). Zootaxa 1792: 54–66
It looks like the Wiki does not have anything on it in any article. Snowman (talk) 20:35, 9 June 2011 (UTC)
That's because IOC split it into two species: N. cirrhatus is Crested HE and N. limnaeetus is Changeable HE. With the exception of the Flores HE (where the confusion over the true adult plumage only was solved a few years ago), this equals the two groups defined by Amadon in 1953 → Changeable Hawk-eagle#Systematics. When there only is one species, limnaeetus is a subspecies of N. cirrhatus and the 'combined species' is consistently called Changeable HE by major authorities. I do not know of any major recent authority that keeps the two together and use the name Crested Hawk-Eagle for the combined; it would be utterly misleading for the populations outside the Indian subcontinent. At present wiki follows the one species approach, but if someone want to split the article into two, I wouldn't argue against it... not that I think the presently available evidence for the split is particularly strong. • Rabo³ • 20:01, 9 June 2011 (UTC)
Actually, I just checked IOC again. They started with N. cirrhatus as Changeable HE. Then they split it into two, as described above: N. cirrhatus = Crested HE and N. limnaeetus = Changeable HE. At some point they reverted back to the single species approach, but for reasons that are unclear to me they did not revert the English name (forgot it, perhaps?). No logic in calling this round-headed fellow "crested". • Rabo³ • 20:15, 9 June 2011 (UTC)
Yes, the name does not appear to be descriptive. Snowman (talk) 20:35, 9 June 2011 (UTC)
At this point in time, on the wiki it is still called Crestless Changeable Hawk-Eagle. Snowman (talk) 14:26, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

Category:Tyrant flycatchers and Category:Tyrannidae

If I'm understanding correctly, "tyrant flycatcher" is the common name for family "Tyrannidae". If that's the case, only one of Category:Tyrant flycatchers and Category:Tyrannidae is truly needed. Please discuss whether to keep the common name or scientific name, and merge these two categories together. Dawynn (talk) 14:38, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

They cover the same; synonymous. Can't think of any reason to keep both, but don't know (or care about) which should be kept. • Rabo³ • 13:43, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
I have merged Category Tyrant flycatchers into Category Tyrannidae, since the latter was vastly more populated. Category Tyrant flycatchers is now a category redirect. Snowman (talk) 16:16, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

Birds for identification (119)

Cattle Egret. Maias (talk) 01:30, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
Cattle Egret now at File:Bubulcus ibis -Apenheul Primate Park, Apeldoorn, Netherlands -nest-8.jpg on commons and shown on en wiki species page. Its a good image, but I think it is much to noisy to be a Featured Picture (FP). Snowman (talk) 08:26, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
Confirmed the species. I would judge it a late juvenile. It is transitioning into the adult plumage dominated by black and grey, rather than the early juvenile brown.Steve Pryor (talk) 19:17, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
If the location is correct, can the subspecies be determined? Snowman (talk) 19:21, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
If the location is correct, then the race can be determined on range (though I personally would not be able to distinguish a bird of this stage of development from a race leucopterus). On range, this is the nominate race torquatus.Steve Pryor (talk) 19:36, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
OK. The image has the presumed location, so I will leave it like that. Snowman (talk) 19:44, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
Snow, looks like cinerea to me, not herodias. The lateral neck color is paler (whitish in this case incuding the malars), the tarsometatarsi paler, and herodias does not usually have that little white cap on the bluish shoulder patch (that of herodias when present is normally a sort of burgundy color). It probably just flew in by itself if there are water ponds around.Steve Pryor (talk) 09:13, 24 May 2011 (UTC)
Update. Details of Grey Heron added. In UK I think that Grey Herons go fishing a long way (up to about 20 to 40 miles) from their nesting sites, hence natural ponds need not necessarily be near to the zoo. I sometimes hear of a heron taking treasured fish from a pond in a local garden. Here herons radiate out from a large heron nesting colony around a local lake where about half of all the herons in the county nest, and return to their nests in the evening. Snowman (talk) 09:56, 24 May 2011 (UTC)
Will have to find the time. On instinct, some sort of juvenile Turdid - possibly Catharus.Steve Pryor (talk) 16:31, 25 May 2011 (UTC)
What about the genus Hylocichla? Snowman (talk) 19:07, 25 May 2011 (UTC)
No, I had already eliminated Hylocichla on sight. The juveniles and the adults have noticeably streaky ear coverts. I don't even think this is a juvenile bird everything considered, no indication of a juvenile flange, no buff shaft streaks on the coverts. It might simply be a hurt bird allowing its manipulation, but an adult. The three possibles are bicknelli, ustulatus, and guttatus. Having looked at all of them, I am reasonably sure that this is an adult guttatus faxoni. However, if I have a regional weakness, it is in boreal nearctics, and so I would welcome a confirmation.Steve Pryor (talk) 17:07, 26 May 2011 (UTC)
Looks like a young Hermit Thrush (Catharus guttatus). Dger (talk) 15:27, 8 June 2011 (UTC)
How certain are you? Snowman (talk) 08:57, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
Could also be a Gray-cheeked Thrush. See picture of eastern Hermit Thrush from southern Ontario. Do you have pictures of the tail? Dger (talk) 14:15, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
The only other image of it is a oblique image on flickr here. Snowman (talk) 14:24, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
Since the tail looks reddish, I believe that confirms its a Hermit Thrush. Dger (talk) 02:01, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
There is a slight red hue on a lot of the side of the bird in the oblique photograph, and the tail does not look particular red to me. For me, the face pattern does not fit with Hermit Thrush. I think that the face pattern is a better match for the Grey-cheeked Thrush. Snowman (talk) 18:50, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
I am sticking with Hermit Thrush based on the eye-ring and whiter sides, however, it is still a best guess. Dger (talk) 15:13, 14 June 2011 (UTC)
Snow, I was hoping that Sabine's Sunbird would do this one. In any case, the species is obviously confirmed. The stage of development is less clear. The non-breeding adult should have a blackish stripe running from the forehead all the way down the entire dorsal aspect of the neck. So, the bird appears to me to be a late juvenile/subadult prior to first breeding plumage.Steve Pryor (talk) 09:57, 28 May 2011 (UTC)
Confirmed. MeegsC | Talk 01:08, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
First image of the male on the wiki. Shown in infobox on en wiki species page. Snowman (talk) 07:09, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
Snow, you can take your pick: Phalacrocorax carbo lucidus, or, Phalacrocorax lucidus. The Zoo Park in SD lists 7 males, 3 females for the taxon.Steve Pryor (talk) 15:10, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
White-breasted Cormorant now at File:Phalacrocorax lucidus -San Diego Zoo Safari Park, California, USA-8a.jpg on commons. Snowman (talk) 17:12, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
Snow, put up a blue baby door ribbon, it's a boy.Steve Pryor (talk) 15:06, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
Green Aracari now described as an adult male. Snowman (talk) 17:04, 31 May 2011 (UTC)

Multiple edits on Harpy Eagle and Philippine Eagle

There has been a lot of editing and some reverting or partial reverting on the articles of these two eagles. Can a consensus be reached on the contents of the pages? I have invited User talk:Informaticz and User talk:Rabo3 to participate in this discussion. Snowman (talk) 14:06, 30 May 2011 (UTC)

Just to put on my admin hat for a second, both Rabo3 and Informaticz need to stop the edit warring. Users can and have been blocked for slow edit-warring before, even when there has been no breach of the three revert rule (not a threat - just a statement of how it is) and Rabo3 should really stop using the rollback feature to revert edits which are clearly being made in good faith by Informaticz (see Wikipedia:ROLLBACK#When_to_use_rollback). Unless I'm missing something, this looks like your standard content dispute, which could probably be solved if the two users in question discussed the issue on the talk page/one of their user pages and stepped back from the articles in question for the time being (constantly reverting each other leads only to ill feeling and raised tempers). It's not really going to do any great harm to leave the 'wrong version' (whichever that may be) up for the couple of days or so that it may take to talk this through... --Kurt Shaped Box (talk) 21:44, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
There has been discussion on the users talk pages, so I invited both users to advance the discussion here, where there is more likely to be more participants. It might be that the two editors are using a different range of references. I think that all amendments to measurements of eagles need to backed up with a reliable sources; see (WP:RS). I find it sad to see the recent string of edits of conscientious users in the page histories. It was my understanding when I got my rollback rights that the facility is used for overt vandalism (or similar overt problems). Snowman (talk) 11:15, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
Actually, his edits are clearly not being made in good faith: 1) He changes information so it does not match the citation (e.g., Harpy 8 kg instead of 9, which directly conflicts with the information in the multiple citations that all clearly state 9 kg), modified accurate information to inaccurate (e.g., length in Harpy), inserts information that is not even supported by the reference he provides (in Phil. Eagle "female is typically reported as being 102 cm long on average", but nothing is stated about what typically is reported in the ref., and the ref. itself only provides measurement for two males and an individual where the sex is unknown), and deletes loads of fully referenced information to insert unreferenced info (see Phil. Eagle, where the section goes from having 6 different references that all are at the very top of WP:RS to only having 1 – he uses two external links to the same ref. [as described above, one of those sentences isn't even supported by the ref] but most is completely unref'ed; the single ref. and its info is also used in the longer 6 ref. version, per WP:PRESERVE; yet another policy the shorter 1 ref. version violates). The first sentence of WP:VAN says: "Vandalism is any... removal, or change of content in a deliberate attempt to compromise the integrity of Wikipedia". This is a clear case of vandalism and as such I have reverted it again, per WP:3RRNO and Wikipedia:ROLLBACK#When to use rollback. If anyone disagrees with this being vandalism, I would like to know how it can be interpreted as anything else. As people will notice if they check his talk page, everything was explained to him repeatedly (his manner of adding new comments to his talk page is confusing, as he typically adds the comment above the last comment and rarely signs them; I've just gone through his talk page to add dates so people can follow them, but roughly the oldest comments are near the bottom). The thing I got from that was 1) He continues as if nothing was explained to him. 2) He continues to make unsupported claims despite my requests that he provides citations. 3) He continues to talk about the tail, which never really was an issue (at no point has anyone added it to the article). 4) He finally stopped inserting an external link to a page with multiple copyright violations in the wiki article, but he continues to do so elsewhere, including on my talk page (where I just removed the links; see my talk page for more on that). See also this old discussion from WP:BIRD on eagles and their size. • Rabo³ • 11:50, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
Jimmy Wales recently did a video that was linked to the head of wiki pages, and he invited any reader that noticed an error to fix it and he urged the fixing of errors straight away. Hence, it is apparent that that fixing errors immediately is encouraged by the founder of the wikipedia. Conversely, knowingly leaving errors in articles for a few days does not seem to me to be consistent with his statement, and to me the existence of errors seems contrary to the purpose of the wiki. In general, I would have thought that conscientious Wikipedians would want to fix errors as soon as possible. At the present time, I am not sure how to access the video and I am not sure if a text version is available or not. Snowman (talk) 12:28, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
If, as Rabo claims, the Informaticz edits are incorrect and unreferenced, despite talk page discussion, that raises the question of whether the edits really are in good faith (each of the "diet of frogs" edits looked like GF in isolation). If that is the case, he/she needs to be warned. K-sB seems to have picked this up, so I'm happy to leave it to his judgement Jimfbleak - talk to me? 14:44, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
I started this discussion here anticipating that several people will be available to advance the discussion, and I look to a consensus rather than one persons judgement. If any action is needed, I think that it could be preferable to ask an administrator, who does not edit bird pages and who would clearly not have any WP:COI in having to form an opinion on editors who they have worked (or may work) with in collaboration. Snowman (talk) 16:55, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
I have not analysed complete sequences of edits and I welcome User Informaticz comments. Nevertheless, on Wikipedia:Verifiability issues concerned with a few of the changes, I think that it is wrong for an editor to change referenced eagles' measurements to make it look like the new measurements are sourced from the original in-line references, and I think that User Rabo3 was justified in putting back the original measurements as soon as he saw the un-sourced alterations appearing to be sourced from the original in-line reference; see WP:UNSOURCED. I hope that User Informaticz will be able to confirm that he understands the importance of verifiability on the wiki. Perhaps, the editors with different ideas on the sizes of eagles could have asked for other opinions sooner, because there are administrators out there that can form a balanced opinion on a series of edits taking into account a variety of users comments. If several reasonable people have the same opinion then it is very difficult to prove that one of them is in the wrong despite contrary opinions; see Bolam v Friern Hospital Management Committee (the Bolam test). Snowman (talk) 16:55, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
(after edit conflict)I do see Rabo's point now. Looking at it yesterday, it appeared to me that the dispute was principally about whether the HE weighed 8 or 9kg - because you were using different sources which stated different measurements (which is precisely the sort of edit-war that would qualify for an entry on WP:LAME!) and whether the measurements of captive eagles should be considered when stating the birds' dimensions. Also looked as though Informaticz was asserting that some of the existing refs in the PE article were incorrect and hence was removing them. As for Rabo's use of Rollback - well, I personally wouldn't use it in this situation, as it would seem (to the non-involved) to be a non obvious case (though it could probably be justifed under the 'To revert widespread edits... ...such as at the relevant talk page' clause). I personally only use Rollback in cases where someone inserts blatant graffiti/trolling/rants/spam, or in the case of long-term indeffed/banned users editing using sockpuppet accounts, a few persistent ones of which which I'm familiar with and I sweep for every so often (where it's relatively easy to point out what the situation is if anyone questions what I'm doing), or in cases where someone has badly screwed something up and inadvertently broken numerous pages. Anything else, I'll provide an explanation for in the edit summary. If you take a look at Wikipedia:Vandalism#What_is_not_vandalism, there are a few entries there that could describe what Informaticz is doing with the eagles, depending on how one may choose to look at things. In light of Rabo's explanation, the ideal situation here would probably be for the article to remain at the most recent stable version whilst discussion with Informaticz takes place, provided that he's willing. Further input from uninvolved editors is welcome. --Kurt Shaped Box (talk) 18:25, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
I usually revert unexplained and unreferenced alterations that change the meaning of referenced text, but I generally use twinkle to "revert a good faith edit" and I probably would not used rollback in a one-off situation now (although I have used rollback a few times when I was not sure how to deal with such alterations). If friendly communication fails, I probably would not go it alone and risk escalating a one-to-one conflict by using rollback for persistent additions, because I would probably ask for help instead, and then sometimes a persistent offender get blocked for a while owing to vandalism. If it is not an changing IP, I have used twinkle to advise persistent users about falsification, which also alerts other users to what the user might be doing. I think that Wikipedia:Twinkle is useful and makes some of the reverting work and quick and easy, and it has a useful choice of messages and warnings to give users. Most users can use Twinkle. Snowman (talk) 18:53, 31 May 2011 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I remain convinced that the three points I highlighted on my talk page are valid, but note the good points raised about rollback in the above. Should someone need it in relations to these two wiki articles, my offer (10 May @user talk:Informaticz) is valid for everybody, quote: "If you know where it [a reliable source] is, but you have been unable to access it again, feel free to forward the author(s) and name of book/article to me and I'll get it (I have access to a major scientific library, which has most and can get the things they do not have)." • Rabo³ • 19:16, 31 May 2011 (UTC)

I believe his last edits to Phil. Eagle and Harpy that include both "Blanking, illegitimate" and "sneaky vandalism" per definitions at WP:VANDTYPES indisputably proves that they are not made in good faith (whether he should be warned for this, as suggested by Jimfbleak earlier, is something I will leave for other people): He deleted information that is fully supported by a WP:RS, modified ref'ed sentences so they do not match their ref's, added a sentence and provides a reference that does not support it, and added new information without providing ref's. Unless a good argument is provided (by him, someone, anyone) why such clear violations of multiple wiki policies (WP:NPOV, WP:PRESERVE, WP:V) should remain in wiki articles, I will revert both tomorrow. On my talk page he has provided one new ref. in support of a claim of his, but I note user:Shyamal, who certainly knows far more about wiki policies than I do, has raised a very valid questions about its status under WP:RS. If it is judged that it valid, I have posted a version of the Phil. Eagle section (based on the section before last revert by user:Informaticz) that includes it at my sandbox. Red sections are entirely new; I haven't seen the wildlife special for years, so that info is entirely based on the claim by User:Informaticz on my talk page. It also includes a new sentence about the tail that perhaps could be added. This is only because he continues to talk about it on my talk page – as I pointed out earlier, the tail was never really an issue (at no point has anyone added anything about it to the article). • Rabo³ • 08:48, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
I look forward to seeing expansion to the articles. I have fixed some formatting problems on the articles and provided a longish edit summery in explanation. The deletion of the copyrighted images from commons is taking some time even though I have tagged them as potential copyright violations, so I have expedited a decision on deletion. Sometimes when the references are from erudite difficult-to-obtain expensive large university text books, it is difficult for people who do not have access to these sort of ornithology books to read around the topic or verify a particular fact. I wonder if there are any reasonably good accessible reliable websites or on-line journal articles that can be used as a references as well as the textbooks (even if there is a little duplication). There are a number of guidelines about listing reliable websites as external links, generally external links should provide a resource that is not available in the article if it was FA status article (even if the article is not an FA). Initially it is sometimes difficult to determine if a user who is making editing mistakes is new to editing and is willing to learn or if a user is deliberately causing disruption on the wiki. The wiki has a new drive to retain new editors and enhance collaboration. I would have thought that all new editors make mistakes and they learn from their mistakes and watch for corrections that more experienced editors make. I think that a number of people are watching the eagle pages and I hope to see that User Informaticz does show a learning curve in one way or another. I expect that there are a number of editors who would show User Informaticz the basics of writing scientific articles partly be correcting his formatting and so on. Snowman (talk) 09:48, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
I think that I can see what he's trying to say about the tail of the Philippine Eagle - he believes that as the tail is (supposing that the sources check out) 20" long, then by looking at a photos of the bird that he's found, it should be possible to roughly work out the typical length of the bird - and that this figure is greater than the (minimum) one listed in the article. I mean, he may well be right - but it's a question of what can be found in reliable sources - verifiability, not truth and all that. Anything else would be WP:OR. --Kurt Shaped Box (talk) 17:43, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
WP:OR, but just for the fun of it, a bit of simple math (see my Sandbox for numbers + their ref's): Tail minimum reported: 42 cm. Total length minimum reported: 86 cm. 86/42 = 2.0476. Longest tail reported: 50 cm. 50 cm x 2.0476 = 102.38 cm = almost exactly the max number provided by virtually every source, and the exact number if we assume they only use natural numbers. Of course, as I already explained on my talk page, there are reasons the tail is not really the best measurement, but if people believe it should be added, I've already said elsewhere that they should feel free to do so, and I provided fully ref'ed info on tail length in the version in my Sandbox. If his claims of "30–40%" were accurate, the 50 cm tail would have been on a bird that was 125–167 cm long! Numbers that are far above those reported by anyone and one that would place its maximum total length well above that of the Haast's Eagle (up to 140 cm in total length)! • Rabo³ • 18:57, 1 June 2011 (UTC)

We are talking about female Philippine eagles which reached no less than 100 cm long on average, Because you were saying that a 112 cm long eagle from the FMNH was extra ordinary in length which by the way just one specimen the only matured female specimen available used in the experiment the other two are male one 100.3 cm longlink matured male and one 940 cm Immature male (Noticed that Harpy eagles specimen from the experiment doesn't even reached 100 cm even the female specimen: "But this is another topic anyway")and there are no available measurements of female eagles from the wild; And I cited the "almost 20 inches long tail" or 50 cm long tail and I said the tail alone could reached "almost 20 inches long and you said that I was making a unsupported claimed which you also said that the longest on record was at 17-18 inches only. I think the 86 cm is wrong.. It's 102 cm Total length minimum reported 102/42 (42 cm min.tail length) Let's just put it at 100 cm/42 = 2.38. (probably) Longest tail 50 cm x 2.38 = 119 cm long. Very simple Math analogy If the bird is 100 cm long then the tail and the body would never be at 50/50 right? otherwise It would be a 50 cm long body and a 50 cm tail because they measured it from the tip of the beak to the longest tail feathers so I think the estimated 30 to 40 % total tail length would be more realistic. If the Philippine eagle is 110 - 120 cm long a 50 cm long tail is more fitting to a 30-40 % of total length. by this simple analogy you could at least estimate that the 112 cm long is not extra ordinary as you claimed especially those from the wild which nobody had done it.. measuring each eagles. Do you have a documented measurement of female Philippine eagles from the wild please show them to me IF you find any? we might be even surprised how long they are? Informaticz (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 07:18, 3 June 2011 (UTC).

Not sure I understand but then that is in the light of the standard morphometric measurements quoted in books. Adding accompanying sketch of the measurements. I am also sure that there are allometric ratios involved, so any extrapolations have to be based on careful data collection, but that would be for publication in a journal as no original research is allowed here in any case. FWIW 105.2 cm is a measure (N=?) for a female length in Gamauf A; M Preleuthner and H Winkler (1998). The Auk (PDF). 115 (3): 713–726  Text "Philippine birds of prey:Interrelations among habitat, morphology and behavior" ignored (help); Missing or empty |title= (help) Shyamal (talk) 07:33, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
I am not sure why the tail length should be directly proportional to the birds length. For birds of different sizes with identical proportions the weight increases with the cube of length. For birds of different sizes with identical proportions aerodynamic uplift would be proportional to the area of the feathers (presumably wings and tail feathers combined) and this would be proportional to the length of tail squared. This is my "back of an envelope" initial guesstimate. I would be happier to go along with the cube of size of bird from head to where the tail starts on the body (the heavy parts of a bird) is proportional to the square of the surface area of feathers (tail and wings combined) (which in turn could well be proportional to the length of the tail squared). I think it is common sense that larger birds need proportionally larger wings to fly. This is why very large birds can not fly and humming birds have proportionately small wings. A bee's wings are even smaller proportionately. I doubt that you can assume that birds of different sizes of the same species have dimensions of everything in the same proportion. I guess that the genetics would provide larger birds within a species population with proportionately larger wings and tail features for agile flight to compete and survive. This is only a line of thought, which could be completely wrong, and so it should not be added to the article; hoverer, I expect that there are respectable studies of bird proportions both mathematically and empirically, that can be quoted in a wiki article where relevant. It is a topic of partly of applied mathematics, physics, and biology and in all disciplines the theory is checked against reality and experiment. I think the biological aspects of birds flight or proportions are less predicable than the aspects of pure physics and any calculations applied to biology would need to be backed up with a lot of empirical data. Snowman (talk) 09:09, 3 June 2011 (UTC)

Birds tail length varies depending on the specie as some birds has a many times longer tail than it's total body length like the peacock but eagles would be different in tail to body ratio proportion and I don't think it would reached to a 50/50 ratio? Here's a more simple analogy from the Haribon foundation specimen. There is really nothing special about these specimen from FMNH as Rabo3 was trying to imply as everybody knows Philippine eagle is a very rare specie and those 3 specimen were donated to the museum are in fact very normal in size . (3 specimen used) - One mature female 112 cm in length, one mature male measured at 100.3 cm and one 964 mm Immature male which more likely would also reached 100 cm long with only 36 mm difference assuming that it would get mature based on the actual length of the mature male specimen … knowing that male eagles are about 10% smaller than female eagles.. Hence a 112 cm female length x 10% is equal to 11.2 % a 112 cm minus 10% is equal to 100.08 % which is at a very normal range! Informaticz (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 13:44, 3 June 2011 (UTC).

Two factual mistakes in the earlier comment 07:18, 3 June by Informaticz (and Informaticz, do consider checking the sources that were added earlier, but repeatedly and without reason removed by you, since they include answers to your final question):
1) As people will see if they check my comment, I never said all that was reported *anywhere* for the tail was 17-18 inches (I'll use inches here since this is what he prefers, although no serious scientist would ever use inches in an international forum). I specifically said that this is what is reported in recent "primary sources for raptors", which, as mentioned on his talk page, are Raptors of the World (2001) + Handbook of the Birds of the World vol. 2 (1994). Of those, only the former provides tail measurements. Since the tail was not a major issue (no one had added anything about it in the article), I did not check *every single source*, and I never said I did (unlike total length, where I checked every single source I could think of from the very beginning). Informaticz, you made the claim of 50 cm tail. You should find the source if you want to add it (see WP:BURDEN). It is not my job to find sources that support your claims and then add them to the article. When he continued to talk about the tail, I did end up checking every single source I could think of, and this resulted in the addition you can see in my sandbox. Of those, the majority clearly state they follow the standard (as in Shyamal's post), but nothing is noted in the source with 50 cm. As said repeatedly (for tail, etc), and WP:V supports this completely, anyone can add anything to the article as long as they provide a WP:RS source when they add it.
2) As I already mentioned earlier, the link he uses does not support his claims. It does not say anything about what "typically is reported" and it only provides measurements for two males (within generally reported range in total length) and an unknown (far above range reported anywhere else). How he gets "the typically reported average for females" from that is puzzling. Is it possible that the large unknown is a female: Certainly. Is it more likely female than male: yes. But since the source does not make these statements, it is clear WP:OR. When it comes to hard sources on gender difference in this species, there are numerous sources that make the rather vague statement "females average larger than males", and the only that puts a clear number on it is Raptors of the World (Ferguson-Lees & Christie 2001; page 226), which suggests that males average 10% smaller than females, but ends that with a question mark, indicating the clear uncertainty. In the version by Informaticz, he says males are 10-20% smaller than females, and does not indicate any uncertainty. That brings us back to WP:V and WP:BURDEN, just like everything else he added to Phil. Eagle.
*A few comments to specific comments by Informaticz: "Math analogy If the bird is 100 cm long then the tail and the body would never be at 50/50 right?" – why? What rule states that birds can't have a tail length that roughly equals half the total length? Where does that made-up rule place Long-tailed Hawk, most astrapias, many phesasants, etc.; species that in many cases have tails that actually exceed 50% of the total lenght? Pretty much every source that deals with the Phil. Eagle specifically mentions that it is a very long-tailed species (per Brown and Amadon 1968, and Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2001: among the largest eagles, the only other that has a tail that is proportionally as long as the Phil. Eagle is the Wedge-tailed Eagle).
*Informaticz said: "If the Philippine eagle is 110 - 120 cm long a 50 cm long tail is more fitting to a 30-40 % of total length" – please provide a source and do check the math (I already provided the results in the last comment). Tail 30-40% of total length; largest tail 50 cm. Then the total length would be: (100/40)x50 cm AND (100/30)x50 cm = 125-167 cm!
*Informaticz said: "I think the 86 cm is wrong" – what you think, I think and any other wikipedia user thinks is entirely irrelevant. It strongly suggests you have not checked WP:V (see very first sentence) despite being pointed to it repeatedly.
*Informaticz said: "Let's just put it at 100 cm/42 = 2.38. (probably)." – Under what logic would you combine the shortest tail reported with one of the longest total lengths reported by the very same source??? In any case, as I already said earlier, all this math is WP:OR, as it, even if we assume all tail measurements are taken in the exact same way, is based on at least two assumptions for which we have no support: Is the proportional tail length versus total length similar for males and females? Is the tail/total length a linear function?
This brings us back where we were in the beginning: WP:NPOV, WP:PRESERVE, WP:V. Thank you very much to Shyamal for providing yet another source. I have taken the liberty of adding it to the Phil. Eagle article, which as a result has been tweaked significantly compared to earlier versions. I have not done it, but this source also provides some good info that can be used in other sections of the article. • Rabo³ • 14:50, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
  • In the case of the Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoo (bird length 22 to 26 in) the population on Tasmania has a longer tail than the birds on the east of mainland Australia by a two inches. I had a quick look at the current range of the Philippine Eagle, which lives in the Philippines where there are a lot of islands. Has the range of the eagle contracted as it has become rarer? Could it be that some populations in some of its current range or former range have slightly different body proportions, size, or feather length? I would be interested to know: Where did the three specimens in question come from? When were they collected? I would be most interested to know where the large one came form, was it measured in life or after death, is it now a skin only, how many of its bones exist (only a few bones are preserved with skins), it is on display to visitors. Does the large specimen have enough surviving material to enable someone to do the measurement again and find the same length? Snowman (talk) 16:58, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
Snowman, since answers to the above to some extent are based on unpublished info (i.e., under no circumstances does the info belong in any wiki article) and I also have a copyright question about one of the photos used in Phil. Eagle the article, I've added a comment on your talk. • Rabo³ • 13:57, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
1.Just to refresh your memory Rabo3 here is your post dated May 5,2011 (in my talk) regarding the 17-18 inches “Regardless, no one but you had made any claims on an exact tail length. Based on the primary sources for raptors (see below post), the only documented is 42–45.3 centimetres (17–17.8 in) You indicated the !7-18 inches CLEARLY!
2. "Informaticz, you made the claim of 50 cm tail. You should find the source if you want to add it (see WP:BURDEN). It is not my job to find sources that support your claims and then add them to the article” Unquote
I think Ialready provided the source It even has a picture of the page, Tittle of the book and the author. Neverthe less I will post it again for you Tittle of the Book: Philippine birds; Page:47, Author: John Dupont [link The 30-40% was just an estimate IF you understand what Imean since we do not know the size ratio of body to tail of Philippiune eagle in particular which I beleived would not reached 50/50 specially eagle specie; looking by their length size of tail and body you dont even have to measure it If you you know how to estimate by the way Have you seen a live Philippine eagle? I dont think you have? The Haribon website ref is one of the most reliable source you can even see the raw data of each specimen where it came from I already provided th reference site, It's your problem If you never bother to read it ... GTG for now Informaticz (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 14:50, 6 June 2011 (UTC).
1) That quote proves exactly what I said in section #1 of my comment on 3 June: based on the primary sources for raptors (see below post); where the below post on the page where I made the comment listed those primary sources. 2) Yes, almost a month after you were asked about it (5 May→27 May), but still never a major issue because it never was part of the article. Unlike the things you actually added to the article, which were not –and are not– supported by a WP:RS source provided by you. Even the claim where you used the Haribon ref was not supported by that ref; I checked it carefully but it appears you didn't (see section #2 in my comment from 3 June). For the remaining, two of your comments in quotation marks, followed by my reply: "... I beleived..." – doesn't matter what you, I or any other person on wiki believes (see my last comment on that; falls in same category as I think). "Have you seen a live Philippine Eagle." – entirely irrelevant to writing wiki articles, but since you're asking: 1x wild pair in Mt. Kitanglad, 2x wild singles at Mt. Kitanglad, and captives at the Phil. Eagle Center in Davao and the (now closed?) Raptor Center at Mt. Makiling. Each –but especially the wild– was an astonishing experiance. Sighting of wild are fairly reliable at Mt. Kitanglad and a few other sites. Note: To avoid repeating myself further, I will only respond to additional questions on this matter if they were not already answered clearly in my earlier posts. • Rabo³ • 20:30, 6 June 2011 (UTC)

1)Rabo3 quote:" As people will see if they check my comment, I never said all that was reported *anywhere* for the tail was 17-18 inches (I'll use inches here since this is what he prefers, although no serious scientist would ever use inches in an international forum).unquote;

This is a International forum and I was trying to make things simple and understandable to everyone reading. It is irrelevant weather somebody uses English or Metric as the unit; I think which ever is convenient for the user would be fair and It's not PROHIBITED nor punishable by law! and about the tail Who said it was a major issue anyway? I commented that the tail alone could reached "almost 20 inches" or 500 mm or 50 cm and you said: "the only documented is 42–45.3 centimetres (17–17.8 in) because you considerd the 112 cm long specimen was not normal in size which is clearly normal as I have already explained it and you asked for the source of the 50 cm long tail.. I said I will get back to you on this and try to find it and I posted it.tail

No… you mis-understood evrything, You cannot really find it in the Haribon site I was reffering to another Philippine eagle specimen which has a 50 cm long tail and I also assumed that the 112 cm long specimen was a female although it has no label of it's gender and for obvious reasons it's quite long to be a male eagle, it also has a long tarsi 145 mm compare to all the specimen in the experiment But we could also put it as a male If that is your preference but It would create more confusing result If we will consider it as a male?

I asked IF you had seen a live Philippine eagle and It's irrelevant for you? Don't you have any idea for yourself or discernment on how to determine things? calculate, judging how long things by the way you see them? you said you have seen a live Philippine eagle that's very good you've seen one of the greatest creature on earth truly it's a astonishing moment.. Now having seen them in flesh can you tell which do you think is longer? the tail or the body? at-least you have an idea? That is why I asked so now I think It's relevant to the issue. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Informaticz (talkcontribs) 05:53, 7 June 2011 (UTC)

Editing break

I am somewhat concerned to see editors taking up a lot of valuable time sorting this out. It is clearly a topic which editors feel strongly about and there is nothing wrong with that in itself. I wonder what is the best way to sort this out in the most amicable way possible. Can I suggest that all discussion about who said what is put aside and editors work to form a consensus on the wording or content of the article? I have asked User Casliber to offer his experience in facilitation and arbitration to help out. Snowman (talk) 11:20, 7 June 2011 (UTC)

As one of the two primary people that is involved in this issue, I support above entirely (my last series of edits, about half a week two days ago [date mix-up corrected], was completely unrelated to size), and I will repeat what I said numerous times before: I will support any version where 1) The sources actually support the info in the article, i.e. WP:V. 2) The sources comply with WP:RS. 3) Any version that follows WP:NPOV and WP:PRESERVE. I believe wiki policy is clear on the matter (two of those are even core policies), and any version that deviates from these should be reverted. I must admit that at this point, more than a month after Informaticz was first pointed to the policies, I have little faith when seeing edits like his last (earlier today) to the Phil. Eagle article, and his last comment in this discussion where it is evident that he did not even read the first lines of WP:OR (despite being pointed to this several times before). • Rabo³ • 11:51, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
At this juncture all editors are welcome to edit the page; however, it may be prudent for editors to adhere to editing guidelines with extra care, since I suspect that there may be a tipping point soon. This includes adding material with a good reference that is in line with WP:RS, not removing text that is sourced from a WP:RS, consideration of WP:V so additions can be checked, and assuming good faith WP:AGF for a long as reasonably credible. I am hoping that Use Casliber will be able to contribute expertise in facilitation and/or arbitration soon. Snowman (talk) 12:22, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
Oh dear, I share Rabo3's concerns looking at the last couple of edits. Given it is one of the biggest eagles, I think largest animals are often targets of vandalism, so this would be a good one to review the sources and get a consensus. I have placed a Web of Science search on the talk page (only 8 hits but it's a start), also I have nominated White-bellied Sea Eagle at GAN, so it's nearing time to choose another article - this might be a good one to sort this out conclusively. Casliber (talk · contribs) 13:34, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
I think there is a typo above referring to White-bellied Sea Eagle, and I see that User Casliber has added a reference search to the Philippine Eagle talk page in preparation for Good Article Nomination (GAN). Snowman (talk) 16:25, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
Actually, I think Casliber did mean White-bellied Sea Eagle; it's just been added to the GAN list. That article is the project's current collaboration, and I think Cas was saying we could make Philippine Eagle the next collaboration to try to resolve some of these issues. MeegsC | Talk 17:38, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
After double checking, I note that User Casliber has added the section Talk:Philippine_Eagle#Web_of_Science_search to the Philippine Eagle talk page. Snowman (talk) 17:41, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
Whoops, I got GAN not collaboration of the month (working to a GAN) wrong. Snowman (talk) 09:25, 14 June 2011 (UTC)

Birds of identification (121)

The IOC and the SACC both have antarcticus, and I think they're both pretty careful about such things. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 21:24, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
Wiki has Stercorarius antarctica and Commons has Stercorarius antarcticus. Snowman (talk) 21:39, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
Stercorarius is masculine, so antarcticus is right. The problem is that it often is placed in the feminine genus Catharacta (then antarctica) • Rabo³ • 13:32, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Brown Skua moved to File:Stercorarius antarcticus -Godthul, South Georgia, British Overseas Territories, UK -landing-8.jpg on commons. Snowman (talk) 14:59, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Comments on identity of Skua welcome. Snowman (talk) 15:39, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Hmmm, not sure - looking at Forshaw, one of the differences between the two is the colouration above the red plumage on the wings - on the Red-winged Parrot it is dark, while the Jonquil Parrot has light I think these look more like Red-winged to me, but not much of the upper plumage is visible. Casliber (talk · contribs) 21:20, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
I think that they are male (on left) and female (on right) Red-winged Parrots. Black on wings would not be present on the Jonquil Parrot, which I can not find listed at any zoo in the world on ISIS. Snowman (talk) 21:51, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
Moved to File:Aprosmictus erythropterus -Vogelpark Plankstadt, Baden-Wurttemberg, Deutschland -pair-8.jpg on commons. Removed from several language wiki. Snowman (talk) 22:05, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
Confirmed. Adult male. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 16:18, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
Shown in infobox on en wiki species page. Snowman (talk) 19:04, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
Wrong genus. Correct is Coryphospingus cucullatus. A male. • Rabo³ • 13:32, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Red-crested Finch now at File:Coryphospingus cucullatus -Piraju, Sao Paulo, Brazil-8.jpg on commons. Snowman (talk) 15:07, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Reason behind the difference is described in the text of Red-rumped Warbling-finch. • Rabo³ • 13:32, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
File details amended on commons. Snowman (talk) 15:49, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Right. • Rabo³ • 13:32, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Photograph selected to be shown in infobox on en wiki species page. Snowman (talk) 15:37, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
As I understand BNA on line, even if we accept the split, birds in the state of São Paulo would be flava, specifically P. flava saira. Someone else will have to tell you whether it's a female or an immature male, if they're distinguishable. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 04:33, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Female. Yes, often split into three species, but regardless this remains as Piranga flava and JerryFriedman is also right on exact subspecies. • Rabo³ • 13:32, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Image description amended on commons. Snowman (talk) 15:32, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
File info updated @commons. • Rabo³ • 19:16, 13 June 2011 (UTC)

Name difference

Black-and-yellow Tanager uses the name Chrysothlypis chrysomelaena (also on IBC ) but the original description here and reflected on [Avibase] is C. chrysomelas - perhaps someone who knows better can resolve / annotate the taxobox. Shyamal (talk) 14:39, 13 June 2011 (UTC)

Corrected. • Rabo³ • 19:17, 13 June 2011 (UTC)
Note that this is a gender difference—in Greek, the masculine is μέλας melas, the feminine is μέλαινα melaena, and the neuter is μέλαν melan. I can't find an entry for -thlypis in Latin or Greek dictionaries, but it appears to be feminine according to the specific names at Geothlypis. Nevertheless, since this is Greek and not Latin, ICZN Article 31.2 would suggest that we need to keep the original name. Berlepsch (1912) also uses chrysomelas. JSTOR 4090132 (p. 928) is a checklist supplement that changes chrysomelaena (in a previous edition) to chrysomelas on the authority of David, N. & Gosselin M. (2002) Gender agreement of avian species names. Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club 122:14–49, which I can't find online. Ucucha 11:33, 14 June 2011 (UTC)

Morphometrics box

Bob the WikipediaN has made a bird morphometrics template infobox which may be usable in the longer articles. The draft documentation is at Template:Birdbox/doc and modifications to the template can be suggested while the documentation needs to be improved. As usual it would only be an option to textual descriptions. Shyamal (talk) 01:19, 14 June 2011 (UTC)

Wow! Could be very useful for some bigger articles...Casliber (talk · contribs) 01:52, 14 June 2011 (UTC)
Not sure about the colours for the genders. This is biology, not children's clothing! Sabine's Sunbird talk 04:35, 14 June 2011 (UTC)

Food web

Food web is currently being rewritten, and will hopefully go to FA. Any contributions from people in this project will be much appreciated. --Epipelagic (talk) 06:12, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

Birds for identification (120)

The species is confirmed. It would appear to be a female Pteroglossus azara flavirostris.Steve Pryor (talk) 18:50, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
A bit difficult to say if it is female or just sub-adult, but otherwise I agree entirely in both species and subspecies. Subspecies (flavirostris) is of some importance in this case, as P. azara sometimes is split into two or even three species. • Rabo³ • 19:22, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
Update: Details of taxonomy noted on file description on commons. I presume that these are difficult to breed in zoos and it is unlikely that the zoo has a young aracari. Snowman (talk) 19:47, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
Not really that difficult to breed, it has been bred a few times in a small number of US zoos and even if we assume this was an imported individual, how would we know it is not a recent import (which often involves young ones because they're easier to catch)? Dallas World Aquarium, which essentially is the world center when it comes to captive toucans, toucanets and aracaris, has imported (and subsequently bred) this and numerous other species in the last few years; both for themselves and other AZA certified zoos. The limited captive breeding mainly appears to be because the Ivory-billed only became available in any number a few years ago. The closely related Green Aracari, which has been available far longer and essentially has the same breeding behavior as the Ivory-billed, has been regularly bred in zoos for many years. • Rabo³ • 20:23, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
When there is doubt if a juvenile or a female is depicted as here, I find it difficult to show the image in a article. It is reassuring to hear about bird breeding in zoos. Snowman (talk) 20:53, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
It is certainly not a juvenile, which are easy to recognize by their bill pattern. When I use sub-adult I refer to a phase just before full adult, but well after juvenile. I recognize that "sub-adult" (exactly like "juvenile" and "immature" as used by "normal birders") is a general birding term where the definition does not match the very exact Humphrey-Parkes terminology or alike. • Rabo³ • 21:18, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
Whoops. I meant female or sub-adult. Snowman (talk) 21:22, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
Rabo, yes, I agree as to a bit of uncertainty, and that is why I hedged my bets by using the conjunctive with "it would appear". The general bill conformation appeared female, but then a shorter, stockier bill certainly occurs as they grow out with age. Agree also on the uncertainty of some of the terminology. When I am lazy, I sometimes resort to the entirely unsatisfactory catch-all terms of immature, or juvenile. When I am not, I use slightly less unsatisfactory terms like early, or late juvenile. A sub-adult bird for me is a bird that appears adult with the exception of one or two small indications of immaturity, but then even this gets sticky when you have to decide whether to use the possible "young adult" in these cases.Steve Pryor (talk) 00:14, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
Are you talking about it possibly being a female sub-adult or a sub-adult of undetermined gender? Snowman (talk) 14:40, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
Snow, I am not sure if your question is directed to me, but in case it is I would respond that I consider a sub-adult bird as already demonstrating sexual dimorphism in those species in which it is normally present, i.e., the sex should already be apparent. It goes without saying that in species in which there is no demonstrable dimorphism, then the gender of a sub-adult bird would be generally speaking, indeterminable to a cursory examination without having the bird ITH.Steve Pryor (talk) 15:58, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
It which case can I assume that in your opinion this bird is an adult female or a sub-adult female? Snowman (talk) 17:29, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
Ptilinopus jambu. The foreground bird is an adult male, and the background bird, well, the adult female has a bit of red limited to the forehead, and this must be an immature male in transition.Steve Pryor (talk) 18:55, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
Jambu Fruit Doves now at File:Ptilinopus jambu -Philadelphia Zoo, Pennsylvania, USA-8a.jpg on commons. Snowman (talk) 19:09, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes, Sri Lanka. Both sexes have black heads, and black mantles, and are paler below. The other races have differences of the color of the head and the mantle according to the sex, and they have a darker more russet wash ventrally (both sexes). There are also very subtle difference of the amount of white of the wing slash, and the number of white feathers involved in the wing coverts, but to appreciate this you need better photos. Hemipus picatus leggei. You can't sex this race on gross morphology when adult, they are too similar.Steve Pryor (talk) 19:11, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
Subspecies details added to file description on Commons. First photograph of its species on the wiki, shown in infobox on species page. Snowman (talk) 19:16, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
You're right Snowman. That's a Rook. MeegsC | Talk 12:17, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
Thank you. No changes needed. Snowman (talk) 17:10, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
Bubo philippensis.Steve Pryor (talk) 16:10, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
Philippine Eagle-Owl moved to File:Bubo philippensis -Malagos Garden Resort, Davao City, Philippines-8a.jpg on commons. Shown on en wiki species page. Snowman (talk) 17:31, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
Confirmed. Adult male in alternate plumage.The ranging race is nigrifrons.Steve Pryor (talk) 16:16, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
Extra details added to file description of Southern Red Bishop on Commons. Snowman (talk) 17:31, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
Adult Haliastur indus.Steve Pryor (talk) 16:08, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
Brahminy Kite now at File:Haliastur indus -Philippine Eagle Center, Davao City, Philippines -upper body-8a.jpg on commons. Snowman (talk) 17:31, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
The taxonomy remains the same. It is an adult male P. subaureus aureoflavus. The IOC nomenclature is now Eastern Golden Weaver.Steve Pryor (talk) 06:51, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
Common Tody-flycatcher (Todirostrum cinereum). Sexes are similar. MeegsC | Talk 13:41, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Now at File:Todirostrum cinereum -Gamboa, Panama-8.jpg on commons. Snowman (talk) 13:47, 6 June 2011 (UTC)

Picture of the day for 15 June 2011

File:Buteo magnirostris -Goias -Brazil-8.jpg is picture of the day today (15 June 2011) and it is being shown on the main page, so expansion or copy editing of the Roadside Hawk article will be appreciated. Please lookout for vandalism or bizarre edits to the species article today. Snowman (talk) 09:48, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

... and the winner is

File:Lamprotornis hildebrandti -Tanzania-8-2c.jpg won the 2010 bird picture of the year (bird category) on Commons; see Commons:Commons:Picture_of_the_Year/2010/Results/R1/Category_winners. Appreciation to Noel Feans, the Flickr photographer, who kindly issued the photograph with a Commons friendly licence, and User Sabine's Sunbird for identifying it. Voting finished some time ago. Snowman (talk) 18:03, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

I am glad we got it on the main page then, with an article where alot of folks looked (we did end up using it for bird didn't we?) :) Casliber (talk · contribs) 20:54, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
Actually, it is not being shown on the "Bird" article. Snowman (talk) 21:01, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
It may have been for a while, but if it hasn't been it should be. Sabine's Sunbird talk 19:10, 16 June 2011 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Today's_featured_article/May_4,_2010 Casliber (talk · contribs) 20:42, 16 June 2011 (UTC)

Birds for identification (122)

The bright face and bill colours would make it a male, in my opinion, and would assume adult. Females seem to lack any bright colour on face. JMK (talk) 12:47, 14 June 2011 (UTC)
  • Bird 1221. "Green Barbet" seems to be Megalaima viridis, or White-cheeked Barbet. It is also linked to wikispecies as Green Barbet. JMK (talk) 10:58, 14 June 2011 (UTC)
Yes. M. viridis. Shyamal (talk) 13:35, 14 June 2011 (UTC)
Agree. A young one.Steve Pryor (talk) 13:56, 14 June 2011 (UTC)
  • Well spotted. I think that it is an adult female Chaffinch. Snowman (talk) 10:27, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
Fine. • Rabo³ • 17:18, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
Female. • Rabo³ • 17:18, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
Image description on Commons amended. Snowman (talk) 18:54, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
ID fine. No chance separating male/female. • Rabo³ • 17:18, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
First image of this species on the Wiki. Shown in infobox of species page. Snowman (talk) 18:54, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
I think it is Japanese White-eye, an introduced species, but not certain. Snowman (talk) 20:56, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
Indeed. Natureguy1980 (talk) 03:56, 29 June 2011 (UTC)
Taken in mid-winter, so it must be a non-breeding male Southern Masked Weaver. JMK (talk) 16:58, 18 June 2011 (UTC)
Uploaded to File:Birds at a bottle bird feeder in Johannesburg, South Africa.jpg. —innotata 17:32, 18 June 2011 (UTC)
  • I've removed it from the "unidentified" category. —innotata 14:48, 18 June 2011 (UTC)

Peregrine Falcon

FWIW, I have listed Peregrine Falcon to go on the mainpage (can't believe it hasn't been already), so if anyone feels inclined to do any tidying of it (it was promoted in 2007), that'd be great. I'll take a look later too. Casliber (talk · contribs) 20:09, 21 June 2011 (UTC)

aaaand on mainpage tomorrow. Casliber (talk · contribs) 02:47, 23 June 2011 (UTC)
Can't we do better for the taxobox image? Sabine's Sunbird talk 06:53, 23 June 2011 (UTC)
If you find one, great. I looked at what was on commons and was taken aback that such a we lacked a really punchy striking image for such a well-known bird. I didn't look on flickr due to time constraints, so if an image were to be found there that was appropriately licenced and ported in, I'd be up for an image change. Casliber (talk · contribs) 00:18, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
File:Falco peregrinus tethered.jpg (used further down in the article) would seem to be a far more striking image to me - tether or no tether... --Kurt Shaped Box (talk) 00:35, 24 June 2011 (UTC)

43,800 page views was more than the average bio article anyway :) Casliber (talk · contribs) 02:21, 27 June 2011 (UTC)


FYI, Lore (anatomy); merge? Maias (talk) 00:43, 22 June 2011 (UTC)

  • I have never, until right now, heard this noun used in a singular form. I suggest we change the entry to "lores". Natureguy1980 (talk) 23:00, 23 June 2011 (UTC)
    • I have. Though it is generally pluralized, it is used in the singular within certain contexts. The major use where I have commonly seen it in the singular is within discussions for determination of bird ID's from photographs. In that context, if considering this feature, and if only one side of the head is visible, it is correctly used in the singular. However, I can think of no other context in which it is not pluralized.Steve Pryor (talk) 07:05, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
      • You could say the same for a lot of paired structures; ie lateral aperture, lateral olfactory stria, medial olfactory stria. I suggest keeping with the singular. Snowman (talk) 11:29, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
        • To answer the merge question I think that it would be helpful to know where it is proposed that the article might be merged into. Snowman (talk) 11:31, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
          • I too have seen lore as a singular but only rarely. The simple answer is to add a redirect for "lores" to "lore (anatomy)'. I just did that. Dger (talk) 15:23, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
            • There seems to be a trend in the coverage of anatomy here to have a lot of short stubs like the one on the lore of a bird and the neuroanatomy stubs linked above. Snowman (talk) 23:29, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
  • Lores, is also a locality within La Pernía, so I have added to "Lore (anatomy)" a signpost header to the dab on "Lore", and listed the town on the dab. Snowman (talk) 14:10, 25 June 2011 (UTC)

Jackdaw taxonomy

Ok, I have been buffing up Jackdaw intermittently over the years, and see [1] - so do we have it at Corvus monedula or Coloeus monedula? This molecular study has some info - see here - with some other material mentioned. I don't have Rasmussen and Anderton 2005 which is the latest to promote Coloeus as a genus and is followed by IOC - what do others think? Casliber (talk · contribs) 09:31, 27 June 2011 (UTC)

  • Casliber, here is what Rasmussen & Anderton have to say about it: "Taxonomy Recent DNA studies have shown that C. monedula is not closely related to Corvus (Kryukov & Suzuki 2000), hence re-adoption for jackdaws of Coloeus [as used by Wolters 1982 = (Die Vogelarten der Erde * Dr.H.E.Wolters* 1982)]." Op.cit.: Birds of South Asia, The Ripley Guide, Volume 2: Attributes and Status (2005)", P. 598.

Having looked at the genetics in the recent literature, it does seem clear that this species-pair is basal to genus Corvus, more primitive. To me the resurrection of Coloeus sensu Wolters makes sense. They should not be grouped within genus Corvus.Steve Pryor (talk) 06:22, 28 June 2011 (UTC)

Aha, thanks for that, must check out Kryukov & Suzuki 2000....and once digested will change the text. Casliber (talk · contribs) 10:28, 28 June 2011 (UTC)

Medieval birding

Yesterday (Wednesday) I went to Hartlepool to see a robin. It appears to have been quite hectic on Monday when the bird was behind a 3 m wall Jimfbleak - talk to me? 09:22, 9 June 2011 (UTC)

LOL. Wow, that's a first-class twitch all right! Looks like they were planning to storm the castle. I don't think I'd have wanted to live in one of those houses! But the big question is: Did you see it?! MeegsC | Talk 17:51, 9 June 2011 (UTC)
Apparently, at one stage there were nine ladders and three van roofs in use. Yes thanks , on Wednesday the bird alternated between a public bowling green and the enclosed garden, but by then the guy next door was giving access to his balcony for a couple of quid. It's actually a very obliging species, feeding on open lawns instead of lurking in dense foliage or reedbeds, it's just unfortunate that it spent Monday afternoon behind a high wall. Although it's the third for Britain, it's effectively new for everyone, since the first was a one-day bird on an island, and the second, three-day, bird was suppressed. 18:52, 9 June 2011 (UTC)

This reminds me - in central Australia recently there were numbers of Princess Parrot on aboriginal land (which is private and requires permission to access) and throngs of twitchers were heading out to the desert to see them and there were discussions with the aboriginal land council. If some of these have been in national media, they are worth adding to articles...Casliber (talk · contribs) 22:39, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

Good idea, this made it to the national newspapers Jimfbleak - talk to me? 04:39, 13 June 2011 (UTC)
Nice one, but no ladders involved presumably. Too far for me to twitch. Now if it had been a few months earlier... Jimfbleak - talk to me? 18:41, 29 June 2011 (UTC)

Missing IOC names

A reminder: there are still lots of Missing IOC names to be resolved. Any help with this would be much appreciated. SP-KP (talk) 11:30, 18 June 2011 (UTC)

Sometimes complicated taxonomy controversies and uncertainties make this a difficult task. Snowman (talk) 21:04, 18 June 2011 (UTC)
But the reminder is good. If we chip away here and there....Casliber (talk · contribs) 21:07, 21 June 2011 (UTC)
It was changed from 'Rock Pigeon' to something else? I wonder if they'll ever reconsider on the Conures? :) --Kurt Shaped Box (talk) 00:24, 3 July 2011 (UTC)

Socotra Buzzard

Considered as full species Buteo socotraensis according to BLI and IOC, following Porter & Kirwan (2010) --Melly42 (talk) 14:58, 24 June 2011 (UTC)

split and rejigged now. Casliber (talk · contribs) 08:52, 27 June 2011 (UTC)
Similarly, after BirdLife International's recognition, I split off Abd al-Kuri Sparrow; are there any other Socotra populations G.M. Kirwan and colleagues proposed the split of we should split? I'm pretty sure there are more. —innotata 18:57, 27 June 2011 (UTC)
We have the Socotra Scops Owl --Melly42 (talk) 16:49, 2 July 2011 (UTC)

Wikipedia:WikiProject Birds/Collaboration

Ok folks, White-bellied Sea Eagle passed GA and is at FAC - do folks want to keep on with the collaboration, or shall we put it on hold for a while? If there is no time limit, is putting a bigger article there worthwhile? How does everyone feel? Casliber (talk · contribs) 02:07, 28 June 2011 (UTC)

  • It is good that WP Birds had the goal of getting the collaboration of the month to GA and achieved GA for the White-bellied Sea Eagle article. I hope that this can be achieved again for future collaborations, and this is probably best done for an article where this is reasonably achievable. I would hope that I could contribute to the illustrations again. Snowman (talk) 10:35, 28 June 2011 (UTC)

Ok, I'll set July 1 as a deadline as I realise we hadn't done that a 3 way tie on 2 votes (facepalm) Casliber (talk · contribs) 21:37, 28 June 2011 (UTC)


  • Jackdaw is the winner - be good to quickly punt this towards GA as it is alot of the way there, and get another up. Casliber (talk · contribs) 03:28, 1 July 2011 (UTC)


Shouldn't Greenshank be redirected to Common Greenshank? Right now, it's the other way around... MeegsC | Talk 02:48, 1 July 2011 (UTC)

Thanks Shyamal. MeegsC | Talk 19:48, 9 July 2011 (UTC)


  • Well spotted. I see that IOC corrected this in October 2007, see IOC name errors. Update: page moved with administrator assistance, and name corrected on many liked pages. A bot will fix the double redirects in a day or two. Snowman (talk) 12:03, 9 July 2011 (UTC)


Could anyone help with the ID of this? Taken in Doi Inthanon, Thailand. JJ Harrison (talk) 11:35, 8 July 2011 (UTC)

I'd go for Dark-sided Thrush. It doesn't look right for Long-billed, which could occur at Doi Inthanon, but is less likely than the resident bird. It looks too dark underneath for any of the Zoothera thrushes, perhaps it's wet? Jimfbleak - talk to me? 12:17, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
Jim, you are correct. Not even Z. monticola is truly a confusion species. It should not range, the bill is much larger on comparison, and also monticola lacks all of this "salad" on the ear coverts. This is an adult male (the scalloping that you were probably prepared to see in this bird is, in the adults, much reduced and usually visible only if you have a good view of the belly center). By the way, Dark-sided Thrush is a Zoothera (Zoothera marginata)Steve Pryor (talk) 15:06, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
Thanks Steve, I expressed myself badly, what I meant was that I didn't realise any Zoothera could be this dark underneath. Jimfbleak - talk to me? 17:08, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
What is the copyright licence of this image? Snowman (talk) 17:17, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
Part of the darkness on the bottom is just the lighting I think - the shooting location only really had light from directly above, and I couldn't use my fill flash because the cord broke before the trip. To snowman, I'll upload it in good time, I just didn't want to muck around since I can't rename images on commons. JJ Harrison (talk) 02:15, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Well done getting this pic, I didn't even see this at Doi Inthanon. Several project members can rename on Commons, so it's not a problem to upload first I you wanted to. Jimfbleak - talk to me? 11:47, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
I only got a brief look myself. It was below where the deck was at Mr Deang's if you've stayed there. JJ Harrison (talk) 04:22, 10 July 2011 (UTC)

Sibley-Monroe checklist

Should the common names in the Sibley-Monroe checklist be updated with changes in the IOC names? I did an IOC name update on this article, but after making the edit wondered if the article is meant to list the common names as used by the original authors, or if they only used the binomial names in their list. Snowman (talk) 12:05, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

Then it would no longer be the Sibley-Monroe checklist. Lists come and go. The putative father of modern listing is the Peters list, and it has remained as is for years, and now is a part of the historical acta of ornithology. If we want to still call something such and such a checklist, then it should remain, in my opinion, as was at last updating by the authors or the tax group that subentered while the list was kept current.Steve Pryor (talk) 13:38, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
I have reversed my edit. Snowman (talk) 13:52, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
I guess the best thing is to highlight its historical nature and contain a link to the current list in the lede. Casliber (talk · contribs) 23:09, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
The question is, whose current list? The IOC list? Some of the differences aren't just due to the ages of the lists, they're differences in opinion as to the validity (or not) of taxonomic splits. MeegsC | Talk 02:19, 10 July 2011 (UTC)
Meegs, that is a very good question. The last updating done by the original authors, or who for them authorized by them, was in 1993 I believe. Thereafter, a sort of ufficious Sibley-Monroe list was kept by Rolf de By, in some manner associated with Dutch Birding, here:

I don't know the text origin of the list being called the Sibley-Monroe list on the wiki. If it was extrapolated from the original text, including the sequentiality of the intent of the original authors, then that is a true historical Sibley-Monroe checklist. If not, then it is not, technically speaking! I suspect, however, that the list on the wiki is derived from the ufficious Rolf de By lists. In either case, for a number of reasons involving questions of higher avian phylogeny and therefore listing sequence, and also because of questions regarding peer-review of the splits or lumps followed by the ufficious list, and not to speak of old orthography used in the nomenclature, I consider the Sibley-Monroe list, in any form, a list that is best relegated to the corpus of historic bird listing. It has served its purpose and is now basically obsolescent.

As to the larger question you intend, well, the wiki is still in the vacuum of competing lists. As soon as the HM 4° Ed. is published, many of these questions should be resolved in some manner, including higher avian phylogeny (read listing sequence). The IOC list is pretty much based on the HM list (the 3° Ed. however). I am sure that there is now a huge amount of peer-reviewing going on for the lumps and splits that will be included in the HM 4° Ed. Until then, we must just be patient. In my spare time I have been going through the race excel on the IOC site, checking the probity of the orthography, and the validity of the races as best I can. I have been communicating any errors that I find to Dr. Donsker, as well as conferring with him about possible justificational questions for the races accepted. I have done most of it, but lack about 2500 species of non-passeriformes. If somebody is interested, send me a note and as soon as I finish reviewing it they can have it.Steve Pryor (talk) 07:05, 10 July 2011 (UTC)

Birds for identification (123)

Clements doesn't mention the bill as an indicator, and the differences from the very similar adult winter female are all upperparts features, none of which are visible. Having said that, if the image was taken a couple of days ago, it will be a juvenile, females are still in breeding plumage Jimfbleak - talk to me? 14:22, 21 June 2011 (UTC)
  • I think it's safe to say it is a saturatus. If it's in Japan it pretty certainly is, since it is most unlikely to be a migrant at the time of year. saturatus is not very distinct in plumage, even for Passer montanus, but it's described as "darker and more richly coloured" than those in China, and I'd say this looks like it is. —innotata 14:17, 20 June 2011 (UTC)
  • That is interesting. My impression is that this bird has a largish beak for a Tree Sparrow, and I was expecting a comment on its bill size. Snowman (talk) 18:18, 20 June 2011 (UTC)
  • Doesn't look like there are any significant trends in bill size, looking in The Sparrows (and the article here doesn't mention anything either). —innotata 18:29, 20 June 2011 (UTC)
  • From wiki article; "P. m. saturatus, described by Leonhard Hess Stejneger in 1885, breeds in Sakhalin, the Kuril Islands, Japan, Taiwan and South Korea. It is deeper brown than the nominate subspecies and has a larger bill.[5]" Snowman (talk) 18:31, 20 June 2011 (UTC)
  • That's cited to Clement; missed it somehow. Not sure whether to believe it, since the measurement information is presumably from Summers-Smith, which doesn't mention anything of the sort, and only has measurements from a large number specimens for saturatus, showing a very small difference from other Asian birds, and some small bills in the range. The overall suggestion is of possibly slightly larger bills in Asia, but not trends worth discussing in the text. —innotata 18:39, 20 June 2011 (UTC)
  • If we are not taking Clements as RS on a sparrow, what use is it? This bird looks larger-billed than any Tree Sparrow I've seen, it's much richer brown than nominate, I'm happy with saturatus on location and appearance Jimfbleak - talk to me? 14:22, 21 June 2011 (UTC)
  • File description on Commons enhanced. Snowman (talk) 21:01, 22 June 2011 (UTC)
The yellow feet confirm they're Snowy Egrets. Dger (talk) 20:54, 20 June 2011 (UTC)
File details enhanced. Snowman (talk) 22:54, 20 June 2011 (UTC)
It is the parent bird the mother or father? Snowman (talk) 08:34, 21 June 2011 (UTC)
As with other egrets, plumage is the same for both sexes 14:22, 21 June 2011 (UTC)
Do both parents feed the chicks? The file name says "her", and I wonder if this is a guess. Snowman (talk) 21:03, 22 June 2011 (UTC)
  • I've removed it from the "unidentified birds" category. —innotata 14:01, 21 June 2011 (UTC)
Chestnut-naped Imperial Pigeon, Ducula aenea paulina, a race of Green Imperial Pigeon. The latter article says that this distinctive race is pictured, but I cannot see where. Another pic here: Imperial.pigeon. JMK (talk) 09:29, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
Moved to File:Ducula aenea -San Diego Zoo, Florida, USA-8a.jpg on commons and shown on en wiki species page. Snowman (talk) 09:57, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
Absolutely not a Garganey; this would probably constitute one of the first breeding records for North America!! It's a Black Duck. MeegsC | Talk 12:43, 30 June 2011 (UTC)
Agree, odd that it's been given two IDs on the page Jimfbleak - talk to me? 14:03, 30 June 2011 (UTC)
Black Duck is a dab. The adult in the photograph has a black beak. My field book says that the American Black Duck male has a yellow beak and the female has a dull green beak flecked with black. Dull green beaks of female American Black Ducks shown here: File:Anas Rubripes and Anas Platyrhynchos August 2008.JPG - the one on the left is the female American Black Duck. I may be missing something here. Garganey is on the List of birds of the United States as casual. What about Blue-winged Teal, which has a black beak? Snowman (talk) 14:54, 30 June 2011 (UTC)
Garganey has been at this site before in June; see list of sightings, and also Blue-winged Teal and Green-winged Teal has. Snowman (talk) 15:11, 30 June 2011 (UTC)
Snowman, I know Garganey has been seen at Brigantine; it has certainly never bred there. This bird is not a Garganey. It's not a Blue-winged Teal, or a Green-winged Teal. It's an American Black Duck. The adult female has bright orange legs, which neither teal (nor the Garganey) does. A Green-winged Teal would have a distinctive buffy streak at the back end that this bird doesn't show. It also doesn't have a white spot at the base of the bill like a female Blue-winged Teal would have. The bill is dark, yes. The female American Black Duck's bill is a dark olive; it often looks black from any distance at all. I notice that the original photographer correctly identified it; what made you think he was wrong? MeegsC | Talk 15:55, 30 June 2011 (UTC)
MeegsC is completely right. It's an American Black Duck and looks little like the other species mentioned. The bill is dark olive, not black. Also, Garganey has never nested in North America, and if it did, it would be in Alaska, not in New Jersey. Snowman, if you don't already have them, I highly suggest picking up the Sibley Guide to Birds and the National Geographic Guide. They are invaluable, indeed, indispensable resources for anyone attempting to identify the birds of Canada and the United States. Each readily answers the question of this bird's identity. Natureguy1980 (talk) 18:31, 30 June 2011 (UTC)
Thank you. I got a second-hand second printing (1985) of the first edition of the National Geographic Society book (1983). The new books look like good value. File moved to File:Anas rubripes -Edwin B Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge, New Jersey, USA -family-8.jpg on commons. Snowman (talk) 19:05, 30 June 2011 (UTC)
  • Confirmed. It's an adult in breeding plumage (red eye ring and gape). Dger (talk) 23:28, 2 July 2011 (UTC)
Schistochlamys melanopis or Schistochlamys melanopis olivina. JMK (talk) 09:43, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
The plate however looks nothing like Schistochlamys melanopis - based on the text it could be Chlorothraupis olivacea or some close relative. Shyamal (talk) 08:48, 10 July 2011 (UTC)

Significant new review

Essentially the long-needed update on Cracraft et al. (2004). Reviews all of the major molecular and morphological studies done since then.

It's problematic to adopt the taxa presented there as of now (we're lucky not to have adopted "Metaves" it seems...) but the paper is likely the "official Wikipedia source" for higher-level neoavian taxonomy/systematics for the next time (being a secondary source, which we ought to prefer by any means if a recent is available).

The main job of this source is that it allows to eliminate several technically possible relationships with certainty (see discussions in paper), because they occur nowhere. Incidentially it also shows that by the standards of its time, Fürbringer's 1888 guesstimate was not so far off after all - even if it has some glaring errors, it is arguably more in line with the modern studies than the Sibley taxonomy. (Which BTW implies that at least here an educated guess is better than phenetics) Dysmorodrepanis (talk) 23:06, 2 July 2011 (UTC)

Another nail in the coffin of a unified Falconiformes - and an Accipitriformes with Cathartidae as a basal family....after all the talk of stork connections..hehehe Casliber (talk · contribs) 04:10, 3 July 2011 (UTC)
As for Falconiformes, Time-Tree of Life keeps them united for sake of convenience; as a taxonomic secondary source it still stands.
Should no serendipitious missing-link fossil come up, in 3 years I'll hopefully be through with my thesis (published and all), and hopefully then we know more. At least we'll know why different datasets yield such inconsistent results here; it really shouldn't happen. Until then, we're stuck with the reality as presented by Mayr: they're worse than the Hoatzin, because there is no obvious sister group for either part and they tear up half the Neoaves tree if you split.
Any splitting of any taxon requires its parts to be placed somewhere else - and it is precisely that which creates the problem. Fig. 5 in Mayr's review compared to the precending 4 sums it up.
But we do see that no study using beta-fibrinogen at that level of resolution is to be trusted. Even Fürbringer was closer to what the actual big scheme of things seems to be than what this locus tells us...
That being said, by the length-quality ratio, these three (Accipitriformes, Falconiformes and Accipitridae) are still the worst bird articles WP presently has. They rely on primary shources now revealed as contradictory and unreliable, they consequently have a major OR problem. I am still in favor of lumping for the sake of convenience and write "Falconiformes" throughout etc to indicate that monophyly is not implied. It's better to be "probably wrong" at a high level of quality, than to be "possibly correct" while being self-contradictory and creating an OR problem. In brief, my argument for lumping ("when in wikidoubt, err conservatively") still stands.
In any case, if you want to do the work, do so. I have given up on it after collecting more than 100 MB of PDFs which are pertinent to the problem... all I can say is that Hackett et al did the right thing to include all lineages of Falconidae (except that any of the dwarf falcons would be better than Falco). They also recovered a correct phylogeny for Accipitres/-iformes. But both form their own long branch, which in both cases has entirely insufficient support with its presumed sister grouping (in the accipiter lineage, it's below 50%, in which case it's quite dishonest not to collapse it into a polytomy), which should ring all long-branch attraction warning bells. But try getting a thorough study into Science these days... (Regarding literature, if we split the articles we certainly need to cite a whole damn lot more than if we keep them united, because in the latter case we can simply point to Mayr 2011 and TToL and say "there are good reasons to assume they're not monophyletiv, but nobody was hitherto able to consistently propose other relatives" and be done with it. Whereas if we split the articles we certainly need to go discuss all the proposed sister groups in detail.)
TToL sums the problem up best by pointing out that there is neither much support for "Falconiformes" monophyly, nor does assuming para- or polyphyly improve overall phylogenetic resolution of Neoaves (on the contrary). This shouldn't happen if there is no underlying methodological problem. But this is only a problem for PhyloCode supporters; Linneans can simply use quotation marks to denote the "order" as dubious and wait til it has been studied in more detail.
(Regarding Cathartidae, Hackett et al found them to clade with the accipitrid lineage to be about as likely as Eurypyga/Rhynochetos being sister to Cypselomorpha, or Sylvioidea+Muscicapoidea monophyly to the exclusion of Bombycilloidea. If you wanna go ahead with "Accipitriformes" s.l., do at your own risk...) Dysmorodrepanis (talk) 09:23, 13 July 2011 (UTC)
Eg start with an intro like this (haven't linked non-boldface terms, and note raptor dablink):
The "Falconiformes" are a disputed order of birds in the large clade Neoaves. In their widest circumscription they include all diurnal raptors, but the relationships of the families within the group have become highly debated. They are made up of three major lineages, which might be monophyletic (as they were usually held to be until about the mid-20th century), or might unite as many as 3 clades in a paraphyletic group: Many authors split the traditional "Falconiformes" in two, separating the hawks, eagles, kites, Old World vultures and relatives, as well as the more distantly related Secretarybird and Osprey, as order "Accipitriformes". The New World vultures may be included in this group or treated as yet another distinct order "Cathartiformes". The Falconiformes in the narrow delimitation are thus restricted to the family Falconidae, which includes the caracaras, the forest-falcons, and the true falcons and falconets, in addition to the unusual Laughing Falcon and Spot-winged Falconet.[Sources TToL plus Mayr plus HBW 2011 plus one or two good falconid phylo papers... need perhaps three or more, the two spp were really MUCH argued over]
In any delimitation they are smallish to large (in some delimitations huge) land birds -- hawk-sized or larger -- which are found almost worldwide in any sort of habitat, even on high mountains, in inner cities or in deserts. Of all continents, they are absent as breeders only from Antarctica(check), but even there they occur as vagrants(check) and in the Northern Hemisphere Arctic they are not even particularly rare. Most have brownish or greyish coloration and none are markedly iridescent. However, contrastingly light bellies -- sometimes with bold pattern --, or conspicuous red, yellow, black or white markings are not uncommon, as are conspicuous areas of naked and sometimes colorful skin on head and neck. Diurnal raptors are typically carnivores which hunt land vertebrates up to and exceeding their own size, but many eat carrion or invertebrates. Some taxa have evolved adaptations to feed on more unusual food however[most are accipitrids though and hence no examples given and for Herpetotheres we don't even really know yet].[Source HBW]
And then simply merge, denote as in-work, and streamline the content. The group has not been distinguished in much of the literature - especially secondary works field guides lexica etc, hence most source material will be undeterminable to "order". The above is correct IIRC for all ways to delimit Falconiformes.
Alternatively it would be merging Falconidae into Falconiformes, as long as Mayr et al are not through with the current batch of Euro Paleogene material. Which may be anything from 2 to nearly 10 years, but probably 2-5. Dysmorodrepanis (talk) 22:13, 13 July 2011 (UTC)

FA comments

I was reading through our lists of FAs recently. A few comments.

  1. Unsurprising, most are taxon-based. Only one bird anatomy FA, and one biography.
  2. Of course, most of the taxon articles are species. No orders, only four families, and, interestingly, only two genera (and that's counting Nuthatch)
  3. The taxa largely represent individual interests — buckets of birds of prey, swallow and fairy-wrens. Remarkably few parrots, and nothing at all from the massive tyrant flycatcher and hummingbird families.
  4. The large majority of non-cosmopolitan species' articles have a core breeding range in temperate Eurasia or Australasia. The shortage of articles from Africa, S America and tropical Asia is predictable, but surprisingly few purely NAm species.

Jimfbleak - talk to me? 16:38, 4 July 2011 (UTC)

Yeah, I find these analyses interesting. The collaborations sometimes lead us in different directions - I wasn't intending to work up White Stork. There aren't many US birds in the GA list either, but there are some with quite a bit of content that I think were expanded early on and not revisited, like Red-winged Blackbird, Blue Jay and Gray Jay...Casliber (talk · contribs) 19:41, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
I think the above impression that there are surprisingly few parrot articles at GA or FA does not stand up to analysis. There are 80 FAs and 54 GAs, a total of 134 articles. In approximate terms this is about 1% of bird articles. There are about 380 parrot species and probably about 500 to 600 parrot articles, so from this 5 or 6 parrot articles are expected in the list of bird recognised articles and this is what is found. There are 4 FA and 2 GA parrot articles, totalling 6, so this analysis shows that parrots are represented in the GAs and FAs as might be expected. This shows that people who have been editing parrot pages have done about average, and not below average as indicated in the section 3 of the opening comments above. Snowman (talk) 22:02, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
  • To be entirely honest I'm not very worked up about FAs any more. I haven't been able to contribute much lately (poor health) but the fact is when I can I don't find pushing an article up to FA worth my time. As an example take Pitta which I worked on most recently. At this point it is in pretty good shape - but taking it those last two steps would take almost as much effort as getting it this far with only small gains in improved quality. My time would be better spent dragging another start quality family article up to B status than a B status article up to FA. This is perhaps a valif point only for me, and I'm not saying we shouldn't do FAs, just that if we are thinking about our coverage it would be more beneficial to think about our overall coverage. Sabine's Sunbird talk 22:48, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
  • I am sorry to hear that you have not been well. Whilst, WP Birds need some showcase FAs and GAs, my strategy has been to try to get better photographs on a lot of pages rather than concentrating a lot of effort on a few articles. Nevertheless, I think that GAs and FAs are important, partly because they can help editors to get to know more about wiki guidelines and to learn how to write good-enough articles. Snowman (talk) 00:25, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
  • I do sort of agree with Sabine's Sunbird about the phenomenal effort for those last few wiki-yards. What drives me is thinking that if we get a fair few, it'll be much easier to replicate real encylopedia-quality (read Featured) Articles, and at some point in the future really rack up large numbers of them. In which case, maybe focusing on some different articles that we haven't had done yet. No Coraciformes nor Piciformes, nor hummingbirds, no species with extensive cultivation histories aviculture or food), no Orders....all these categories are fair game for GA/FA. Casliber (talk · contribs) 01:50, 5 July 2011 (UTC)

The analysis was not intended to be a criticism of anyone, we all do our bit, and there is no reason for anyone to indulge in the self-flagellation of FAC. I suppose the point I was making with parrots is that they are colourful, lots of pics and often endangered (vulnerable species in general are well represented at FA). Similarly, hummingbirds are small, colourful, some are widespread, and there are hundreds of species - but no top-ranked articles. Contrast with small, colourful kinglets and fairy wrens where there are a total of nine FAs from 18 species. I'm an FAC junky (hit me again...), but mainly just churn out Eurasian species rather than the more needed African or south American families. I suppose as much as anything else, the analysis is a self-reminder to try something more ambitious (like other's impressive seabird and antbird articles). But I need to do Corncrake, Crex and a share of Jackdaw first... Jimfbleak - talk to me? 06:23, 5 July 2011 (UTC)

With regard to articles relevant to the science (not ornithology) in which I have a formal training, I have found articles in their run up to FA status with numerous errors, abysmal ambiguous language, important omissions, bad page organisation, and misquoted references. Sometimes there is unpleasant fierce opposition to seemingly endless listing of problems, made more problematic by people who pass the article without listing a single problem as soon as such an article is nominated for FA. I think sometimes discussions can become unpleasant partly because of lack of team-work, stubbornness, article ownership, stress and/or disappointment in some eager to get FA status achieved, and occasional personal comments. I think that sometimes FA reviewers who find enough mistakes to oppose FA are not appreciated or are even not welcome. Is it worth the candle? Snowman (talk) 07:29, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
I guess you have to ask yourself two questions Snowman. Ultimately it is about the content - so (1) have you seen an article improved by the GA and/or FA process, and (2) have you seen an article made worse. Casliber (talk · contribs) 09:13, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
It is about priorities. Is it better to do a little editing on 20 pages or spend a lot of time on one page? Snowman (talk) 08:19, 6 July 2011 (UTC)
  • What is the influence of the wiki cup? Does it drive up standards? Does it make competitors anxious to win points and eager to see articles reach GA and FA status in too much of a hurry? Snowman (talk) 08:42, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
I think there are probably isolated examples of problems but overall I think the net effect has been positive, but that is only my (limited) impression. Casliber (talk · contribs) 09:13, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
  • There are 342 hummingbird species listed on List of hummingbirds, so numerically they are about three or four recognised articles short of the WP bird average. Snowman (talk) 09:02, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
I know very little about hummingbirds. Casliber (talk · contribs) 09:13, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
"Amazilia" is a mess. The whole "emerald" group is a mess. There are two good new phylo papers which point out this, while the rest is fairly clear-cut. Dysmorodrepanis (talk) 22:16, 13 July 2011 (UTC)

NB: Might be worth scrolling down this list to choose a collaboration from. Maybe the best use is giving as many substantial B-class articles to GA. Casliber (talk · contribs) 09:16, 5 July 2011 (UTC)

Birds for identification (124)

  • Difficult to tell without knowing call and other views. Could be a Chihuahuan Raven based on the long bristles on the beak. Since head is turned and mouth is open this is not certain. Dger (talk) 15:10, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
Snow, this is a Corvus cryptoleucus, and since the itinerary of this trip seems to have been crossing the States from west to east (Death Valley, Las Vegas, then into northwest Arizona before preceding to Taos (northern New Mexico) I will have to make an assumption that the shot was taken somewhere near the Grand Canyon (which supports a recent colonization of this species). C. corax sinuatus has the base of the throat feathers brownish-grey, and here we can see that the feather bases are white which is consistent with cryptoleucus.Steve Pryor (talk) 05:59, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Yep. MeegsC | Talk 22:31, 6 July 2011 (UTC)
Juvenile Northern Saw-whet Owls shown on species page. Snowman (talk) 22:37, 6 July 2011 (UTC)
  • I don't think so. Pizzey and Knight has this species as "dark grey to bronze-brown" and this bird seems to be bronze-brown. The belly is pale cream and the wings are slate grey which isn't found in the immature, so I think its a non-breeding (or transitioning - there is streaking on the throat and a slight crest) adult on the bronze-er end of the spectrum. Sabine's Sunbird talk 21:18, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
Well, certainly this is a full adult bird. The bird should not however be this sort of dark slate-grey involving also the neck. I suspect that it is the fault of the parameters of the photo, and not the bird itself.Steve Pryor (talk) 09:59, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
  • I'm afraid my sources don't say. It may vary across its range. Sabine's Sunbird talk 07:15, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
It is a juvenile (intending the Daintree photo). The putative race mathewsae (N Australia) is not normally considered valid, but in guide books (and also in HBW-1 that lists the race while noting that it is of dubious validity) a distinction is made whereby the putative taxon is generally more rufous in the adult. I have seen photos from all over the more northern range and if there are adult birds in northern Australia that are more rufous, well, it a rather nuanced distinction - perhaps one could arrive at saying that (some) australian birds are clinal for being slightly more rufous as adults. Here are some comp photos for the bird as it appears in Australia:

Steve Pryor (talk) 09:54, 11 July 2011 (UTC)

I am almost convinced that Bird 1243 as a juvenile, but my only doubt is to exclude that bird 1243 is a non-breeding or transitioning adult, as I am not sure how the plumage differs in breeding and non-breeding adults. Snowman (talk) 13:58, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
You can exclude it. All of that rufousness in the feathers of the coverts, and elsewhere on the dorsum is not consistent with adult birds. The non-breeding adults have a diminished occipital crest, are slightly duller overall (less slaty), have the pre-ocular glabrous skin yellowish, have shorter pectoral plumes with less silver streaking, and lack the silvery plumage streaking on the dorsum. N.B.: When the guide books, in their descriptions of the adults, speak of overall differences in the color scheme, they are talking about birds that may run the gamut of a rather dark slate-grey, to a lighter grey, to a greyish-brown. It should be understood that they are talking about a concolorous difference in the adult coloration of the bird. In this bird, instead, it is evident that we are looking at a juvenile in transition from the juvenile brown coloration and that when the dominant brownish of the dorsum and coverts is lost that the adult bird will be greyish. It is not the same thing as the adult being concolorously brownish-grey.Steve Pryor (talk) 14:10, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
I have removed the photograph of the juvenile in Queensland from the infobox and replaced it with the adult in the Philippines. Author of the Queensland heron informed. I am surprised that Commons only has two images of this large species, since some of the bigger birds are well represented. I have looked for more photographs with a Commons friendly copyright and none have turned up so far. Snowman (talk) 21:20, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
Well, the toughest (because the rarest) will always be Ardea insignis, as for sumatrana for some reason and though there are some web-accessible photos, good photos are few. I have a real knockout photo in my DB from Singapore, but can't even find it on the web now. This might be the best now available:

You might just write Sam Wood and ask him if you can use it.Steve Pryor (talk) 07:51, 12 July 2011 (UTC)

Snow, good eye. It is certainly not the hoped for (by the photographer) Corn Crake. Gallinula c. chloropus in post-juvenile moult.Steve Pryor (talk) 07:21, 10 July 2011 (UTC)
  • No problem, it happens. Bad angle, but the evident malar white, and the slight rufous wash on the shoulder is enough for the ID.Steve Pryor (talk) 15:15, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
  • Bird 1248. File:Podiceps auritus -Scotland -male-8a (1).jpg | Horned Grebe probably in Scotland. Is it male, female, or indeterminate? Snowman (talk) 11:13, 14 July 2011 (UTC)
    • Well, of those choices one would have to say indeterminate. From a photo we have no way of knowing if the Photographer has information that we don't, e.g., having seen this particular bird copulating. Grebes as a group are not sexually dimorphic, including this species. Generalizing, sexual differences seem to consist in the males being slightly larger, and with a slightly stronger bill. However, these differences would have to be determined morphometrically on site. So, the most that can be said of this bird is that it is an alternate plumaged (summer plumage) adult bird.Steve Pryor (talk) 08:15, 15 July 2011 (UTC)

Steve Pryor (talk) 14:13, 16 July 2011 (UTC)

  • To me Bird 1249 looks like a female, because it is not as bright as some and there is not that much blue on its back. Snowman (talk) 16:06, 16 July 2011 (UTC)
Well, this could be a judgment call. However, I stand by my original assessment. I have always considered the amount of blueness of the dorsum an indication of increasing age of the adult male. It is worthy of note to remember that immatures of both sexes resemble one another, and the male just gets progressively brighter passing into adulthood, while the female develops the collar and the bluish rump (though duller - a sort of powder blue rather than a brighter turquoise blue). Sometimes coming down one way or another on these questions hinges on instinct, and on almost insignificant detail. The rump turquoise is very bright, the turquoise subnape collar likewise, and if you look closely at the four whitish primary feather shafts near their bases, if you trace an imaginary vertical line where the white shafts just become visible up onto the back, you can just start to discern a small amount of turquoise flecking, and this is never good for a female. It is also evident that there is a fair amount of reflected light coming off of the mantle and this would tend to false our sense of the color depth in that zone. So, I still think this is an adult male, but a young adult male. Here is another typical female:
compare the rather brighter greenness of the coverts of the bird in object, with the rather more washed-out pea-green of the linked photo of the female.Steve Pryor (talk) 21:42, 16 July 2011 (UTC)