Main content area

A new Myzomela honeyeater (Meliphagidae) from the highlands of Alor Island, Indonesia

Irham, Mohammad, Ashari, Hidayat, Suparno,, Trainor, Colin R., Verbelen, Philippe, Wu, Meng Yue, Rheindt, Frank E.
Journal of ornithology 2020 v.161 no.1 pp. 313-324
Eucalyptus, Meliphagidae, bioacoustics, biogeography, birds, highlands, human population, new species, phylogeny, plumage, woodlands, Indonesia
We here describe a new species of Myzomela honeyeater from the Lesser Sunda island of Alor (southeast Indonesia). The new species is phylogenetically most closely related to Myzomela kuehni from the adjacent island of Wetar and most closely resembles that species in plumage. However, it differs in important morphological, bioacoustic and ecological characteristics. The discovery of a new bird species on Alor is of great biogeographic importance and elevates this island to the status of an Endemic Bird Area. The new Alor Myzomela is restricted to montane eucalypt woodland mostly above 900 m elevation and is currently known from few sites across the island. Based on its occurrence records and human population trends in the highlands of Alor Island, we recommend classification under the IUCN threat status endangered.