Page images
PDF
EPUB

FAMILY 41.-COTINGIDÆ. (28 Genera, 93 Species.)

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

The Cotingidæ, or Chatterers, comprise some of the most beautiful and some of the most remarkable of American birds, for such we must consider the azure and purple Cotingas, the wine-coloured white-winged Pompadour, the snowy carunculated Bell-birds, the orange-coloured Cocks-of-the-Rock, and the marvellously-plumed Umbrella-birds, (Plate XV. Vol. II. p. 28). The Cotingidæ are also one of the most pre-eminently Neotropical of all the Neotropical families, the great mass of the genera and species being concentrated in and around the vast equatorial forest region of the Amazon. Only 13 species extend north of Panama, one to the Antilles, and not more than 20 are found to the south of the Amazon Valley. Messrs. Sclater and Salvin divide the family into six sub-families, the distribution of which will be briefly indicated.

Sub-family I. TITYRINÆ (3 genera, 22 species). Ranges from Brazil to Mexico, one species of Hadrostomus inhabiting Jamaica.

Sub-family II. LIPAUGINÆ (4 genera, 14 species) also ranges from Brazil to Mexico; one genus (Ptilochloris) is confined to Brazil.

Sub-family III. ATTALINA (2 genera, 10 species). Ranges from Paraguay to Costa Rica ; one genus (Casiornis) is confined to South Brazil and Paraguay.

Sub-family IV. RUPICOLINÆ (2 genera, 5 species). This subfamily is restricted to the Amazonian region and Guiana, with one species extending along the Andean valleys to Bolivia. The genera are Rupicola (3 species) and Phænicocercus (2 species).

Sub-family V. COTINGINÆ (10 genera, 28 species). Ranges from Southern Brazil and Bolivia to Nicaragua; only two species

(belonging to the genera Carpodectes and Cotinga) are found north of Panama, and there are none in the West Indian islands. The great majority of these, the true Chatterers, are from the regions about the Equator.

Sub-family VI. GYMNODERINÆ (7 genera, 14 species). Ranges from Brazil to Costa Rica ; two species, of the genera Chasmorhynchus and Cephalopterus, are found north of Panama, while there are none in the West Indian islands. Only 2 species are found south of the Amazon valley.

FAMILY 42.—PHYTOTOMIDÆ. (1 Genus, 3 Species.)

[blocks in formation]

The Phytotomidæ, or Plant-cutters, are singular thick-billed birds, strictly confined to the temperate regions of South America. The single genus, Phytotoma, is found in Chili, La Plata, and Bolivia. Their affinities are uncertain, but they are believed to be allied to the series of families with which they are here associated. (Plate XVI. Vol. II. p. 128).

FAMILY 43.-EURYLAMIDÆ. (6 Genera, 9 Species.)

[blocks in formation]

The Eurylæmidæ, or Broad-bills, form a very small family of birds, often adorned with striking colours, and which have their nearest allies in the South American Cotingidæ. They have a very limited distribution, from the lower slopes of the Himalayas through Burmah and Siam, to Sumatra, Borneo, and Java. They are evidently the remains of a once extensive group, and from the small number of specific forms remaining, seem to be on

the road to extinction. Thus we may understand their isolated geographical position. The following are the names and distribution of the genera :

Eurylomus (2 species), Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, Java, and Borneo; Corydon (1 species), Malacca, Sumatra and Borneo (Plate IX. Vol. I. p. 339); Psarisomus (1 species), Himalayas to Burmah, up to 6,000 feet; Serilophus (2 species), Nepal to Tenasserim; Cymbirhynchus (2 species), Siam to Sumatra and Borneo; Calyptomena (1 species), Penang to Sumatra and Borneo.

FAMILY 44.—DENDROCOLAPTIDÆ. (43 Genera, 217 Species.)

[blocks in formation]

The Dendrocolaptidæ, or American Creepers, are curious brown-coloured birds with more or less rigid tail feathers, strictly confined to the continental Neotropical region, and very numerous in its south-temperate extremity. They are divided by Messrs. Sclater and Salvin into five sub-families, to which I shall confine my remarks on their distribution. The details of the numerous genera, being only interesting to specialists, will be given in the table of genera of the Neotropical region. No less than 13 of the genera are confined to South-Temperate America and the High Andes; 14 are restricted to Tropical South America, while not one is peculiar to Tropical North America, and only 15 of the 43 genera extend into that sub-region, showing that this is one of the pre-eminently South American groups.

Sub-family I. FURNARIINÆ (8 genera, 30 species). Ranges over all South America, 4 genera and 18 species being restricted to the temperate sub-region; one species is found in the Falkland Islands.

Sub-family II. SCLERURINÆ (1 genus, 6 species). Brazil to Guiana, Columbia, and north to Mexico.

Sub-family III. SYNALLAXINÆ (12 genera, 78 species). Ranges from Patagonia to Mexico; 7 genera and 28 species are confined

VOL. II.-20

to the temperate sub-region ; species occur in the islands of Mas-a-fuera, Trinidad, and Tobago.

Sub-family IV. PHILYDORINÆ (6 genera, 35 species). Confined to Tropical America from Brazil to Mexico; 4 genera and 8 species occur in Tropical North America.

Sub-family V. DENDROCOLAPTINÆ (14 genera, 59 species). Ranges from Chili and La Plata to Mexico; only 3 species occur in the South Temperate sub-region, while 9 of the genera extend into Tropical North America. Two of the continental species occur in the island of Tobago, which, together with Trinidad, forms part of the South American rather than of the true Antillean sub-region.

FAMILY 45.-FORMICARIIDÆ. (32 Genera, 211 Species.)

[blocks in formation]

The Formicariidæ, comprising the Bush-Shrikes and Antthrushes, form one of the most exclusively Neotropical families; and the numerous species are rigidly confined to the warm and wooded districts, only a single species extending to La Plata, and none to the Antilles or to the Nearctic region. Less than 30 species are found north of Panama. Messrs. Sclater and Salvin divide the group into three sub-families, whose distribution may be conveniently treated, as in the Dendrocolaptidæ, without enumerating the genera.

Sub-family I. THAMNOPHILINÆ.—(10 genera, 70 species.) One species of Thamnophilus inhabits La Plata ; only 3 genera and 12 species are found north of Panama, the species of this sub-family being especially abundant in the Equatorial forest districts.

Sub-family II. FORMICIVORINÆ.—(14 genera, 95 species.) Only 8 species occur north of Panama, and less than one-third of the species belong to the districts south of the Equator.

Sub-family III. FORMICARIINÆ.—(8 genera, 46 species.) About 12 species occur north of Panama, and only 5 south of the Equatorial district.

It appears, therefore, that this extensive family is especially characteristic of that part of South America from the Amazon valley northwards.

FAMILY 46.—PTEROPTOCHIDÆ. (8 Genera, 19 Species.)

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

The Pteroptochidæ are a group of curious Wren-like birds, almost confined to the temperate regions of South America, extending along the Andes beyond the Equator, and with a few species in South-east Brazil, and one in the valley of the Madeira. The genera are as follows :

Scytalopus (8 sp.), Chili and West Patagonia to the Andes of Columbia; Merulaxis (1 sp.), South-east Brazil; Rhinocrypta (2 sp.), Northern Patagonia and La Plata ; Lioscelis (1 sp.), Madeira valley ; Pteroptochus (2 sp.), Chili; Hylactes (3 sp.), Western Patagonia and Chili; Acropternis (1 sp.), Andes of Ecuador and Columbia; Triptorhinus (1 sp.), Chili.

FAMILY 47.—PITTIDÆ. (4 Genera, 40 Species.)

[blocks in formation]

The Pittas comprise a number of beautifully-coloured Thrushlike birds, which, although confined to the Old World, are more nearly allied to the South American Pteroptochida than to any other family. They are most abundant in the Malay Archipelago,

« EelmineJätka »