Yuhina zantholeuca

Written by on November 19, 2010 in Indonesia Bird with 0 Comments

Yuhina zantholeuca,White-bellied Yuhina, Yuhina Perut-putih

The White-Yuhina zantholeuca,White-bellied Yuhina, Yuhina Perut-putihbellied Erpornis (Erpornis zantholeuca) or simply Erpornis is a species of bird. It is the only member of the genus Erpornis. This bird is found in Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist montane forests.

Formerly placed in Yuhina and often still misleadingly called “White-bellied Yuhina”, it is the most distinct member of this “genus” in its obsolete paraphyletic delimitation. It is by no means closely related to the Timaliidae (Old World babblers), where most of the former members of Yuhina are still placed. The Timaliidae are members of the superfamily Sylvioidea in infraorder Passeri, whereas the Erpornis is the closest relative of the vireos (Vireonidae), which are a more ancient lineage of songbirds. Indeed, it may eventually be included in the Vireonidae as one of their few Old World representatives.

In its coloration, morphology and acrobatic habits it resembles a vireo quite a lot. However, it has a prominent crest like many “yuhinas”, which together with the unusual biogeography has served to obscure its true relationships for long.

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