Wednesday, August 1, 2012

>>Genus Hemixos


Chestnut Bulbul (H. castanonotus)
Scientific classification
Blyth, 1845
Hemixos castanonotus
Hemixos flavala
Hemixos is a songbird genus in the bulbul family, Pycnonotidae. Established by Edward Blyth in 1845 for the newly-discovered Ashy Bulbul (H. flavala), this small genus even today contains just two species:
  • Chestnut Bulbul, Hemixos castanonotus
  • Ashy Bulbul, Hemixos flavala
Some treatments merge the genus into Hypsipetes, often together with the rest of the traditional "Hypsipetes group" of bulbuls: IoleIxosMicroscelis and Tricholestes. But in this case, the closely related genera Alophoixus and Setornis would probably also have to be included, and as soon as the earliest described genus, Ixos, is merged with another its name would apply.
In fact, Hemixos is not particularly close to Hypsipetes, and a merger is not well justified.mtDNA NADH dehydrogenase subunits 2 and 3 and nDNA β-fibrinogen intron 7 sequence data puts it closer to (but still well distant from) the Streaked Bulbul (Ixos malaccensis). But whether that species represents the core group of Ixos – around its type species I. virescens (Sunda Bulbul or Green-winged Bulbul) –, or a distinct lineage worthy of separation in a new genus – in which case Hypsipetes might be merged into the core group of Ixos – has not been studied. In any case, though minor, the Hemixos lineage with its stark white throat and light wing patches seems well distinct.

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