Page images
PDF

(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. GYMNODERINAE (7 genera, 14 species). Ranges from Brazil to Costa Rica; two species, of the genera Chasmorlynchus 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.

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

The Phytotomidae, 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. (Platé XVI. Vol. II. p. 128).

FAMILY 43–EURYLEMID.E. (6 Genera, 9 species)

GENERAL DISTRIBUTION.

NEOTRoPICAL NEARCTIC PALAEARCTIC Ethiopian ORIENTAL AUSTRALIAN SUB-REGIONS. | SUB-REGIONS. | Sub-REGIONs. SUB-REGIONs. | Sub-Regions, Sub-Regions. - - - - |--|-- |---- |--|-- |--a 4. - - -

The Eurylaemidae, 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 Cotingidae. 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:— Eurylamus (2 species), Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, Java, and Borneo; Corydon (1 species), Malacca, Sumatra and Borneo (Plate IX. Vol. I. p. 339); Parisomus (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.

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

The Dendrocolaptidae, 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. FURNARIINAE (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. SCLERURINAE (1 genus, 6 species). Brazil to Guiana, Columbia, and north to Mexico. Sub-family III. SYNALLAXINAE (12 genera, 78 species). Ranges from Patagonia to Mexico; 7 genera and 28 species are confined to the temperate sub-region; species occur in the islands of Mas-a-fuera, Trinidad, and Tobago.

Sub-family IV. PHILYDoRINAE (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. DENDROCOLAPTINAE (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.

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

The Formicariidae, 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 Dendrocolaptidae, without enumerating the genera.

Sub-family I. THAMNOPHILINA.—(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. FoEMICIVORINAE.—(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. ForMICARIIN.E.—(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.

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

The Pteroptochidae 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; Merularis (1 sp.), South-east Brazil; Rhinocrypta (2 sp.), Northern Patagonia and La Plata; Lioscelis (1 sp.), Madeira valley; Pteroptochus (2 sp.), Chili; Hylaetes (3 sp.), Western Patagonia and Chili; Acroptermis (1 sp.), Andes of Ecuador and Columbia; Triptorhinus (1 sp.), Chili.

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

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 Pteroptochidae than to any other family. They are most abundant in the Malay Archipelago,

between the Oriental and Australian divisions of which they are pretty equally divided. They seem, however, to attain their maximum of beauty and variety in the large islands of Borneo and Sumatra; from whence they diminish in numbers in every direction till we find single species only in North China, West Africa, and Australia, The genera here adopted are the following:—

(lost loss to lo lo) Pitta (33 sp.), has the range of the family; (*) Hydrornis (3 sp.), Himalayas and Malaya; Eucichla (3 sp.), Malaya; Melampitta (1 sp.), recently discovered in New Guinea.

FAMILY 48–PAICTIDAE (1 Genus, 2 Species.)

GENERAL DISTRIBUTION.

- —. Nrothopical NEARCTIC PALEARctic Ethiopian ORIENTAL AUS rRALIAN Sub-REgions. | Sub-Regions. | SUB-REGIONS. SUB-REgions. | Sub-Regioxs. SUB-REuloss.

[ocr errors]

This family was established by Professor Sundevall, for an anomalous bird of Madagascar, which he believes to have some affinity for the American Formicariidae, but which perhaps comes best near the Pittas. The only genus is Philepitta, containing two species.

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

The Menuridae, or Lyre Birds, remarkable for the extreme elegance of the lyre-shaped tail in the species first discovered, are birds of a very anomalous structure, and have no near affinity to any other family. Two species of Menura are known, confined to South and East Australia (Plate XII. Vol. I. p. 441).

« EelmineJätka »