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Record: oai:ARNO:504284

AuthorAllan J. Baker
TitleMultivariate assessment of the phenetic affinities of Australasian oystercatchers (Aves: Charadriiformes)
JournalBijdragen tot de Dierkunde
AbstractPhenetic affinities of Australasian oystercatchers were elucidated by multivariate statistical analysis of seven morphometric characters taken from museum skins. Nineteen operational taxonomie units (OTUs), representing all the currently recognized species and most of the subordinate taxa, were used to calibrate morphological variation in Australasian Haematopus against the range displayed by the Haematopodidae. The rather homogeneous nature of variation among OTUs was not well suited for analysis by hierarchical clustering methods, but a non-hierarchical ordination method utilizing both principal components and nonmetric scaling produced excellent summaries of the similarity matrices.
The South Island Pied Oystercatcher (H. o. finschi) of New Zealand clustered tightly with the Eurasian H. ostralegus and thus seems to be of Palaearctic origin. All the remaining Australasian taxa grouped in another cluster with the New World forms, and it appears likely that the Australian Pied Oystercatcher will have to be split from the ostralegus group as a separate species. Comments on the taxonomy and zoogeography of the family are postponed until a current study of a much larger data set is completed. “It cannot be but mischievous to any study to have divers systems of nomenclature simultaneously co-existent in the same dominion.” Milligan (1911).
Document typearticle
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