The North American Checklist Committee of the AOU has published the 52nd supplement to the AOU Checklist of North American Birds. This supplement includes a lot of changes “under the hood” which will hardly be noticed by the average birder. Several splits result in new names but none have an immediate impact on the North American species count. Some scientific name changes (mostly from the reshuffling of Wood-Warblers – see my post here), and a few other changes in genus and family assignments. Below is a summary of the changes to English and Scientific names of species in the Sibley Guide. To read more about the changes as well as the changes in sequence of species, check out the pdf of the 52nd supplement. When combined with a previous post about name changes from 2000 to 2009 and name changes in 2010, this updates all species and names in the Sibley Guide to Birds.
- Kentish Plover Charadrius alexandrinus
- Snowy Plover Charadrius nivosus
A long-anticipated split, the Old World Kentish Plover has never been recorded in North America, but has the potential to do so. The two species have always gone by different English names, which remain the same, but the scientific name of Snowy Plover changes to distinguish it from Kentish.
- Common Moorhen Gallinula chloropus
- Common Gallinule Gallinula galeata
Old World Common Moorhen is distinguished from New World populations by voice and by subtle differences in appearance and the English and scientific names of the North American birds change (see my posts on identification here and here). One record from the Aleutian Islands in fall 2010, if confirmed, will be North America’s first Common Moorhen, adding a new species.
- Transvolcanic Jay Aphelocoma ultramarina
- Mexican Jay Aphelocoma wollweberi
The population of Mexican Jay in the southern highlands of Mexico (not recorded in our area) is now split as a new species and takes the existing scientific name A. ultramarina. This requires the northern population to take a new scientific name, although retaining the current English name.
Changes to species names:
- Mourning Warbler Geothlypis philadelphia
formerly Oporornis philadelphia
- MacGillivray’s Warbler Geothlypis tolmiei
formerly Oporornis tolmiei
- Kentucky Warbler Geothlypis formosa
formerly Oporornis formosus [note change in spelling of species name]
- Hooded Warbler Setophaga citrina
formerly Wilsonia citrina
- Kirtland’s Warbler Setophaga kirtlandii
formerly Dendroica kirtlandii
- Cape May Warbler Setophaga tigrina
formerly Dendroica tigrina
- Cerulean Warbler Setophaga cerulea
formerly Dendroica cerulea
- Northern Parula Setophaga americana
formerly Parula americana
- Tropical Parula Setophaga pitiayumi
formerly Parula pitiayumi
- Magnolia Warbler Setophaga magnolia
formerly Dendroica magnolia
- Bay-breasted Warbler Setophaga castanea
formerly Dendroica castanea
- Blackburnian Warbler Setophaga fusca
formerly Dendroica fusca
- Yellow Warbler Setophaga petechia
formerly Dendroica petechia
- Chestnut-sided Warbler Setophaga pensylvanica
formerly Dendroica pensylvanica
- Blackpoll Warbler Setophaga striata
formerly Dendroica striata
- Black-throated Blue Warbler Setophaga caerulescens
formerly Dendroica caerulescens
- Palm Warbler Setophaga palmarum
formerly Dendroica palmarum
- Pine Warbler Setophaga pinus
formerly Dendroica pinus
- Yellow-rumped Warbler Setophaga coronata
formerly Dendroica coronata
- Yellow-throated Warbler Setophaga dominica
formerly Dendroica dominica
- Prairie Warbler Setophaga discolor
formerly Dendroica discolor
- Grace’s Warbler Setophaga graciae
formerly Dendroica graciae
- Black-throated Gray Warbler Setophaga nigrescens
formerly Dendroica nigrescens
- Townsend’s Warbler Setophaga townsendi
formerly Dendroica townsendi
- Hermit Warbler Setophaga occidentalis
formerly Dendroica occidentalis
- Golden-cheeked Warbler Setophaga chrysoparia
formerly Dendroica chrysoparia
- Black-throated Green Warbler Setophaga virens
formerly Dendroica virens
- Fan-tailed Warbler Basileuterus lachrymosus
formerly Euthlypis lachrymosa [note change in spelling of species name]
- Canada Warbler Cardellina canadensis
formerly Wilsonia canadensis
- Wilson’s Warbler Cardellina pusilla
formerly Wilsonia pusilla
In higher-level changes, Tityras and Becards are moved into the new family Tityridae, and Bluethroat (and relatives), Wheatear, and Stonechat are moved from the family Turdidae to the family Muscicapidae.
Related posts and pages:
- Obsolete Bird Names Have you seen any Field Plovers lately? Blue Nutcrackers? Day Owls? These are all alternate...
- Corrections to 4th printing of the Sibley Guide to Birds The following list details corrections made in 2001 in the 4th printing of The Sibley...
- The new Wood-Warbler taxonomy No more Dendroica? American Redstart is now known to be an early offshoot of the...
- New bird names in the 51st AOU Checklist supplement The North American Checklist Committee of the AOU has published the 51st supplement to the...
- The subspecies concept in the Sibley Guide to Birds Several people have asked me why I didn’t include scientific names of subspecies in the...
- Quiz 33: Small songbirds by their wings This quiz shows just the bodies of five species of small drab songbirds with wingbars....