Seychelles Chestnut-sided White-eyes

 
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The Seychelles Chestnut-sided White-eye (Zosterops mayottensis semiflava) is an extinct subspecies of the Chestnut-sided White-eye (Zosterops mayottensis) which still occurs on the Comoros island of Mayotte. At the first scientific discussion by Edward Newton in 1867 it was regarded as full species Zosterops semiflava.

 

Description

It had reached a size of 10 cm, the wing length was 5.8 to 6.3 cm, the length of the tail was 3.8 cm and the length of the culmen 1.1 to 1.2 cm. It was generally greenish yellow with chestnut-colored flanks and a conspicuous white eye-ring. The forehead and a line above the eyes were yellow. The top of the head and the back were yellow olive. The wings and the tail were black and the underparts were pale yellow.

Nothing is known about its ecology.

 

Former Range / Extinction

It is known with certainty only from the small granitic islet of Marianne Island (0,962 sqm) in the Seychelles about 6 km east of La Digue. Reports that is was also occurred on Praslin, La Digue, Silhouette Island and Mahé are unconfirmed.

Due to the hard habitat destruction and the agricultural needs it became apparently extinct between 1870 and 1900 (according to IUCN around 1888). An expedition in 1940 led by Irish zoologist Lesley Desmond Foster Vesey-Fitzgerald failed. There is one specimen in the Natural History Museum in London.

 

References

  • Greenway, James C. (1967): Extinct and Vanishing Birds of the World
  • Luther, Dieter (2005): Die ausgestorbenen Vögel der Welt
 

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