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SPECIES OF BIRDS COMMON TO MADAGASCAR AND AFRICA OR Asia. 1. Cisticola cursitans.
7. Aplopelia tympanistria. 2. Corvus scapulatus.
8. Falco minor. 3. Crithagra canicollis.
9. Falco concolor. 4. Merops superciliosus.
10. Milvus ægyptius. 5. Collocalia fuciphaga.
11. Milvus migrans. 6. Ena capensis.
12. Strix flammea. These three tables show us an amount of speciality hardly to be found in the birds of any other part of the globe. Out of 111 land-birds in Madagascar, only 12 are identical with species inbabiting the adjacent continents, and most of these belong to powerful-winged, or wide-ranging forms, which probably now often pass from one country to the other. The peculiar species -49 land-birds and 7 waders, or aquatics—are mostly wellmarked forms of African genera. There are, however, several genera (marked by italics) which have Oriental or Palæarctic affinities, but not African, viz.--Copsychus, Hypsipetes, Hypherpes, Alectrænas, and Margaroperdix. These indicate a closer approximation to the Malay countries than now exists.
The table of 33 peculiar genera is of great interest. Most of these are well-marked forms, belonging to families which are fully developed in Africa; though it is singular that not one of the exclusively African families is represented in any way in Madagascar. Others, however, are of remote or altogether doubtful affinities. Sittide is Oriental and Palæarctic, but not Ethiopian. Oxylabes and Mystacornis are of doubtful affinities. Artamia and Cyanolanius still more so, and it is quite undecided what family they belong to. Calicalicus.is almost equally obscure. Neodrepanis, one of the most recent discoveries, seems to connect the Nectariniidae with the Pacific
Depanididæ. Euryceros is a complete puzzle, having been placed with the hornbills, the starlings, or as a distinct family. Falculia is an exceedingly aberrant form of starling, long thought to be allied to Irrisor. Philepitta, forming a distinct family, (Paictidæ), is most remarkable and isolated, perhaps with remote South American affinities. Leptosoma is another extraordinary form, connecting the cuckoos with the rollers. Atelornis, Brachypteracias, and Geobiastes, are terrestrial rollers, with the form and colouring of Pitta. So many perfectly isolated and remarkable groups are certainly nowhere else to be found; and they fitly associate with the wonderful aye-aye (Chiromys), the insectivorous Centetidæ, and carnivorous Cryptoprocta among the Mammalia. They speak to us plainly of enormous antiquity, of long-continued isolation ; and not less plainly of a lost continent or continental island, in which so many, and various, and peculiarly organized creatures, could have been gradually developed in a connected fauna, of which we have here but the fragmentary remains.
Plite VI.-Illustrating the characteristic features of the Zoology of Madagascar.—The lemurs, which form the most prominent feature in the zoology of Madagascar, being comparatively well-known from the numerous specimens in our zoological gardens; and good figures of the Insectivorous genera not being available, we have represented the nocturnal and extraordinary aye-aye (Chiromys madagascariensis) to illustrate its peculiar and probably very ancient mammalian fauna; while the river-hogs in the distance (Potamochorus edwardsii) allied to African species, indicate a later immigration from the mainland than in the case of most of the other Mammalia. . The peculiar birds being far less generally known, we have figured three of them. The largest is the Euryceros prevosti, here classed with the starlings, although its remarkable bill and other peculiarities render it probable that it should form a distinct family. Its colours are velvety black and rich brown with the bill of a pearly grey. The bird beneath (Vanga curvirostris) is one of the peculiar Madagascar shrikes whose plumage, variegated with green-black and pure white is very conspicuous; while that in