Darters (Anhingidae)

Darter (Anhinga melanogaster) - HBW 1, p. 361

French: Anhinga roux German: Schlangenhalsvogel Spanish: Anhinga Común
Other common names: Oriental/Indian Darter (melanogaster); African Darter (rufa); Australian Darter (novaehollandiae); Snakebird

Taxonomy: Anhinga melanogaster Pennant, 1769, Ceylon and Java.
Sometimes included in A. anhinga. Often split into three species, A. melanogaster, A. rufa (incorporating race vulsini) and A. novaehollandiae; A. rufa is most distinctive of three. Four subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • melanogaster Pennant, 1769 - India to Philippines and Sulawesi.
  • rufa (Daudin, 1802) - Africa S of Sahara, Middle East.
  • vulsini Bangs, 1918 - Madagascar.
  • novaehollandiae (Gould, 1847) - New Guinea and Australia.