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11 December 2017 Supposed sympatry of Corapipo manakins in the Tacarcuna region of Colombia, and a comment on Schiffornis: a response to Renjifo et al. (2017)
Dale Dyer
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A demonstration of sympatry would be a decisive factor in the determination of species limits, which have been controversial in Corapipo manakins. Renjifo et al. (2017) claimed to document the occurrence of White-bibbed Manakin Corapipo leucorrhoa on the Colombian slope of Cerro Tacarcuna, a mountain straddling the border between Panama and Colombia. Their species account recognised the distinction between C. leucorrhoa and White-ruffed Manakin C. altera, which has sometimes been treated as a subspecies of C. leucorrhoa (AOU 1983, Ridgely & Gwynne 1989). Ridgely & Gwynne (1989) and Wetmore (1972) are cited for localities where C. leucorrhoa (sensu stricto) has been documented in Panama, and the authors claimed sympatry in Panama between C. leucorrhoa and C. altera based on these references.

However, neither Ridgely & Gwynne (1989) nor Wetmore (1972) reported nominate C. leucorrhoa from Panama. Wetmore's (1972) Corapipo records for eastern Panama were all attributed to C. a. altera, and comparing it with C. leucorrhoa he noted ‘the two groups . . . are not in contact’. Ridgely & Gwynne (1989) included altera within C. leucorrhoa, but wrote ‘birds from Middle America to northwestern Colombia were formerly often considered a distinct species (C. altera, White-ruffed Manakin) from those of northeastern Colombia and western Venezuela (C. leucorrhoa, White-bibbed Manakin)’, so their eastern Panama records plainly also refer to altera. Thus, there is no previous published evidence of sympatry for C. leucorrhoa and C. altera (see also Kirwan & Green 2012). Nor did Renjifo et al. (2017) give a basis for their identification of their birds as C. leucorrhoa. The principal diagnostic character, length and shape of the outer primary, is not described in their text nor shown in their photo, and no measurements are given. If verified, this record would represent a significant range extension for C. leucorrhoa.

Renjifo et al. (2017) also reported documenting Schiffornis at their study site on Cerro Tacarcuna, but their text and Appendix 1 contradict each other as to which species is involved. The text (p. 59) listed Schiffornis veraepacis acrolophites as ‘among first or second specimen records of subspecies endemic to the Darién … foothills’. The Appendix 1 (p. 65), a list of birds recorded, does not list S. veraepacis but instead refers to S. stenorhyncha at their study site as a visual, aural, trapped and specimen record. Both species are known from the Tacarcuna region (Wetmore 1972). Co-author J. E. Avendaño (in litt. 2017) subsequently reported that the specimen he collected (ICN 38178) has been identified as S. v. acrolophites, and that Appendix 1 was in error.



American Ornithologists' Union (AOU). 1983. Check-list of North American birds. Sixth edn. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington DC. Google Scholar


Kirwan, G. M. & Green, G. 2012. Cotingas and manakins. Princeton Univ. Press. Google Scholar


Renjifo, L. M., Repizo, A., Ruiz-Ovalle, J. M., Ocampo, S. & Avendaño, J. E. 2017. New bird distributional data from Cerro Tacarcuna, with implications for conservation in the Darién highlands of Colombia. Bull. Brit. Orn. Cl. 137: 46–66. Google Scholar


Ridgely, R. S. & Gwynne, J. A. 1989. A guide to the birds of Panama with Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Honduras. Second edn. Princeton Univ. Press. Google Scholar


Wetmore, A. 1972. The birds of the Republic of Panama, pt. 3. Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC. Google Scholar
© 2017 The Authors; Journal compilation © 2017 British Ornithologists' Club ISSN-2513-9894 (Online)
Dale Dyer "Supposed sympatry of Corapipo manakins in the Tacarcuna region of Colombia, and a comment on Schiffornis: a response to Renjifo et al. (2017)," Bulletin of the British Ornithologists’ Club 137(4), 315-316, (11 December 2017).
Received: 14 June 2017; Published: 11 December 2017
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