University of Kansas Biodiversity Institute Fiji Expedition Broadens Genetic Research

In December 2010, KU Biodiversity Institute graduate student Mike Andersen, and curator of birds, Rob Moyle, completed a three-week expedition to Fiji.

This effort marked Ornithology’s third expedition to Fiji, work that began in November 2009.

Aerial photo of Kadavu Island, Fiji showing extensive lowland rainforest extending to coastal coral reef.

Fijian Parrot Finch

They collected specimens of 23 species from two locations: the isolated Nakauvadra Range in the extreme northeastern part of Fiji’s largest island, Viti Levu; and the southern island of Kadavu.

The Kadavu specimens were the world’s first from this island with associated genetic tissue samples, and the collection included three endemic bird species: Whistling Dove (Ptilinopus layardi), Kadavu Honeyeater (Xanthotis provocator), and Kadavu Fantail (Rhipidura personata), plus numerous morphologically unique island forms such as Golden Whistler (Pachycephala pectoralis) and Collared Kingfisher (Todiramphus chloris).

Full report and article here…

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