Whistlers (Pachycephalidae)

Golden Whistler (Pachycephala pectoralis) - HBW 12, p. 421

French: Siffleur doré German: Gelbbauch-Dickkopf Spanish: Silbador Dorado
Other common names: Common Golden Whistler; Balim Whistler (balim); Norfolk (Island) Whistler (xanthoprocta); Banda Sea Whistler (Banda Sea races); Bismarck Whistler (races in Bismarck Archipelago and on islands off SE New Guinea); Black-chinned Whistler (Moluccan races); Fiji Whistler (races in Fiji and Santa Cruz Is); Fulvous-tinted Whistler (Lesser Sundan races); Yellow-throated/Oriole Whistler (races in Solomon Is)

Taxonomy: M[uscicapa] pectoralis Latham, 1801, Port Jackson, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
A member of a species group that includes also P. orpheus, P. nudigula, P. meyeri, P. soror, P. lorentzi, P. schlegelii, P. implicata, P. caledonica, P. jacquinoti, P. flavifrons, P. melanura and P. aurea. Formerly treated as conspecific with one or more of those, especially P. caledonica, P. jacquinoti and P. melanura. Provides one of the most complex examples of geographical variation in the avian world; more than 70 geographical races have been named, on basis mainly of variation in ove.. View all taxonomy...

Taxonomy: M[uscicapa] pectoralis Latham, 1801, Port Jackson, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
A member of a species group that includes also P. orpheus, P. nudigula, P. meyeri, P. soror, P. lorentzi, P. schlegelii, P. implicata, P. caledonica, P. jacquinoti, P. flavifrons, P. melanura and P. aurea. Formerly treated as conspecific with one or more of those, especially P. caledonica, P. jacquinoti and P. melanura. Provides one of the most complex examples of geographical variation in the avian world; more than 70 geographical races have been named, on basis mainly of variation in overall size and bill size, and numerous plumage characters of both males (including colour of crown, back, throat and tail, and presence and/or colour of hindneck-collar and breastband) and females (variation more subtle, involves primarily amount of yellow or olive in plumage). Last major revision, as long ago as mid-1950s, identified eight groups of races (A-H), circumscribed broadly as follows: A, Lesser Sunda Is (“fulvotincta group”); B, Moluccas (“mentalis group”); C, Solomon Is (“orioloides group”); D, Fiji (“vitiensis group”); E, New Guinea, Bismarck Archipelago and N Australia (“citreogaster group”); F, S Australia (“nominate group”); G, S Melanesia (New Caledonia, Loyalty Is, New Hebrides, Banks Is) (now an expanded P. caledonica); H, widespread (S Moluccas and Timor E through SE New Guinea, Bismarck Archipelago, Santa Cruz Is, Fiji and Tonga). First seven groups (A-G), which occupy discrete areas, are regarded as earlier colonizations; members of group H, considered to be a second wave of colonizers, are more uniform in appearance, with plumages that could be considered “typical” form for the species, characteristic of Australian populations. In several areas, members of Group H meet those of other groups, often hybridizing; also, races with distinctive plumage are connected with more “typical” ones by intermediate populations. Has been proposed to split present species into several species, elevating many of these groups to species rank (each often incorporating local members of group H); moreover, Rennell race feminina (in S Solomon Is), has been proposed as a separate, sexually monochromatic species. Although all of this may seem feasible, more detailed assessment of all the factors is required, and further study is warranted. In addition, other named races include: in Lesser Sundas jubilarii (Lomblen E to Alor), merged with fulvotincta, and arthuri (Wetar), merged with calliope; in S Moluccas alfurorum (Seram), synonymized with macrorhyncha; and in Australia occidentalis (SW Western Australia), merged with fuliginosa, and queenslandica (region of Big Tableland, in NE Queensland) and ashbyi (S Queensland, extreme N New South Wales), both synonymized with nominate. Fifty-nine subspecies currently recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • javana E. J. O. Hartert, 1928 - E Java and Bali.
  • fulvotincta Wallace, 1864 - Lesser Sunda Is (Sumbawa E to Alor).
  • fulviventris E. J. O. Hartert, 1896 - Sumba.

     See all 59 subspecies
  • javana E. J. O. Hartert, 1928 - E Java and Bali.
  • fulvotincta Wallace, 1864 - Lesser Sunda Is (Sumbawa E to Alor).
  • fulviventris E. J. O. Hartert, 1896 - Sumba.
  • teysmanni Büttikofer, 1893 - Salayer I (off SW Sulawesi).
  • everetti E. J. O. Hartert, 1896 - islands of Tanahjampea, Kalaotoa and Madu (S of Sulawesi).
  • pelengensis Neumann, 1941 - Banggai Is (E of Sulawesi).
  • clio Wallace, 1863 - Sula Is (E of Sulawesi).
  • mentalis Wallace, 1863 - Morotai, Halmahera, Bacan.
  • tidorensis van Bemmel, 1939 - Ternate and Tidore (off W Halmahera).
  • obiensis Salvadori, 1878 - Obi.
  • buruensis E. J. O. Hartert, 1899 - Buru.
  • macrorhyncha Strickland, 1849 - Seram and Ambon.
  • calliope Bonaparte, 1850 - Wetar, Timor and Semau.
  • par E. J. O. Hartert, 1904 - Roma I (E Lesser Sundas).
  • dammeriana E. J. O. Hartert, 1900 - Damar I.
  • compar E. J. O. Hartert, 1904 - Leti Archipelago (Leti, Moa), in E Lesser Sundas.
  • sharpei A. B. Meyer, 1884 - Babar I.
  • fuscoflava P. L. Sclater, 1883 - Tanimbar Is (Larat, Yamdena).
  • balim Rand, 1940 - WC New Guinea (N slopes of Snow Mts).
  • goodsoni Rothschild & E. J. O. Hartert, 1914 - Admiralty Is.
  • sexuvaria Rothschild & E. J. O. Hartert, 1924 - St Matthias Group.
  • citreogaster E. P. Ramsay, 1876 - Bismarck Archipelago (New Hanover, Djaul, New Ireland, Feni, Umboi, New Britain, Nusa, Tolokiwa).
  • tabarensis Mayr, 1955 - Bismarck Archipelago: Tabar (off E New Ireland).
  • ottomeyeri Stresemann, 1933 - Bismarck Archipelago: Lihir (off E New Ireland).
  • collaris E. P. Ramsay, 1878 - Louisiade Archipelago (Egum, Bonvouloir Group, Conflict Group, Teste, Deboyne Group, Misima, Renard), off SE New Guinea.
  • rosseliana E. J. O. Hartert, 1898 - Rossel I (SE Louisiades).
  • bougainvillei Mayr, 1932 - Buka, Bougainville I and NW Solomon Is (Shortland Is).
  • orioloides Pucheran, 1853 - W & C Solomons (Choiseul, Malakobi, Santa Isabel, Florida Is).
  • pavuvu Mayr, 1932 - Russell Is (Banika, Pavuvu, Moie), in SC Solomons.
  • melanonota E. J. O. Hartert, 1908 - W Solomons (Vella Lavella, Ranongga).
  • centralis Mayr, 1932 - W Solomons (Kolombangara, New Georgia, Vangunu, Nggatokae).
  • melanoptera Mayr, 1932 - W Solomons (Rendova, Tetepare).
  • sanfordi Mayr, 1931 - Malaita (SE Solomons).
  • cinnamomea ( E. P. Ramsay, 1879) - Guadalcanal and Beagle I.
  • christophori Tristram, 1879 - Solomon Is: San Cristobal and Santa Ana.
  • feminina Mayr, 1931 - Rennell, in S Solomons.
  • ornata Mayr, 1932 - N Santa Cruz Is (Swallow Is, Reef Is, Duff Is).
  • utupuae Mayr, 1932 - C Santa Cruz Is (Utupua).
  • vanikorensis Oustalet, 1877 - S Santa Cruz Is (Vanikoro).
  • intacta Sharpe, 1900 - Banks Is, and N & C Vanuatu (S to Efate).
  • chlorura G. R. Gray, 1860 - Erromango (SC Vanuatu).
  • cucullata ( G. R. Gray, 1860) - Anatom (S Vanuatu).
  • littayei E. L. Layard, 1878 - Loyalty Is (Lifu, Uvea).
  • aurantiiventris Seebohm, 1891 - Yanganga and Vanua Levu (except SE coast), in N Fiji.
  • ambigua Mayr, 1932 - Vanua Levu (Cankaundrove Peninsula), Rabi and Kioa.
  • torquata E. L. Layard, 1875 - Taveuni.
  • graeffii Hartlaub, 1866 - Waya and Viti Levu, in W Fiji.
  • optata Hartlaub, 1866 - Viti Levu (SE coast) and Ovalau.
  • koroana Mayr, 1932 - Koro (C Fiji).
  • vitiensis G. R. Gray, 1860 - Ngau (C Fiji).
  • kandavensis E. P. Ramsay, 1876 - SW Fiji (Vanua Kula, Bega, Ono, Kadavu).
  • bella Mayr, 1932 - Vatu Vara, in EC Fiji.
  • lauana Mayr, 1932 - S Lau Archipelago (Ogea Levu, Fulanga, Wangava), in SE Fiji.
  • fuliginosa Vigors & Horsfield, 1827 - SW & S Australia.
  • pectoralis ( Latham, 1801) - E Australia (E Queensland, NE New South Wales).
  • youngi Mathews, 1912 - SE Australia.
  • glaucura Gould, 1845 - Bass Strait islands (King I, Flinders I) and Tasmania.
  • contempta E. J. O. Hartert, 1898 - Lord Howe I.
  • xanthoprocta Gould, 1838 - Norfolk I.