Butcherbirds (Cracticidae)

Black Butcherbird (Cracticus quoyi) - HBW 14, p. 337

French: Cassican des mangroves German: Mangrovemetzgervogel Spanish: Verdugo Negro
Other common names: Spalding/Rufous/Brown/Quoy Butcherbird, Black/Rufous Crow-shrike

Taxonomy: Barita Quoyi Lesson and Garnot, 1827, Dorey (= Manokwari), Vogelkop, north-west New Guinea.
Has at times been placed in a monotypic genus, Melloria. DNA evidence suggests that this species may be more closely related to C. tibicen than to others of genus, but more evidence needed. Race jardini intergrades with rufescens in region of Endeavour R (in NE Queensland). Geographical variation slight; some authors consider that species would be better treated as monotypic. Five subspecies currently recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • quoyi ( Lesson & Garnot, 1827) - West Papuan Is (Waigeo, Salawati and Misool), Yapen (in Geelvink Bay) and mainland New Guinea (except Trans-Fly).
  • alecto Schodde & Mason, 1999 - SC New Guinea (Trans-Fly region from Princess Marianne Strait E to Daru I), Aru Is, and islands in N Torres Strait (Boigu and Saibai).
  • spaldingi Masters, 1878 - N Western Australia (Cambridge Gulf) E along coast, including Tiwi Is (Bathurst I and Melville I), to coastal Arnhem Land (to Blue Mud Bay, in Gulf of Carpentaria).

     See all 5 subspecies
  • quoyi ( Lesson & Garnot, 1827) - West Papuan Is (Waigeo, Salawati and Misool), Yapen (in Geelvink Bay) and mainland New Guinea (except Trans-Fly).
  • alecto Schodde & Mason, 1999 - SC New Guinea (Trans-Fly region from Princess Marianne Strait E to Daru I), Aru Is, and islands in N Torres Strait (Boigu and Saibai).
  • spaldingi Masters, 1878 - N Western Australia (Cambridge Gulf) E along coast, including Tiwi Is (Bathurst I and Melville I), to coastal Arnhem Land (to Blue Mud Bay, in Gulf of Carpentaria).
  • jardini Mathews, 1912 - coastal Cape York Peninsula S to Mitchell R in W and to Cooktown in E.
  • rufescens De Vis, 1883 - NE coastal Queensland from Cooktown area S to N Broad Sound (S of Mackay), with gap at Burdekin R.