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How Many Genera Have You Seen? (1 Viewer)

cajanuma

Well-known member
I've completed very few (non-monotypic) genera, and those that I have completed are very species poor. Gavia (5) is my most speciose I think.

I don't keep track of how many genera I've seen or which ones I have completed, but one that I was very happy to complete is Rhegmathorina antbirds - only five species, but all fantastic! The closely related Phlegopsis bare-eyes is another one, three species but all great ones. One of my lifetime goals is to see all the species in the obligate ant-following antbirds clade (so those two genera plus Phaenostictus, Pithys, Oneillornis, Willisornis, and Gymnopithys)
 

Jeff Hopkins

Just another...observer
United States
What are the other four, Swallow-tailed and Lava?
Black-billed, Olrog's, White-eyed, and Red-legged Kittiwake.

I had a trip to Israel scheduled for April 2020, Argentina for October 2020, and New Zealand for January of this year. That would have been followed up with a trip to the Pribilofs this year to wrap it all up. All cancelled.

The Israel trip was postponed to April this year and then cancelled again. It's now scheduled for April '22. New Zealand is now on for February of '22. I was actually waitlisted for the rescheduled Argentina in '22, but I decided that since I spent nothing on travel in '20, I'm going to go big and do an Antarctica/Falklands/South Georgia cruise and will get the Olrog's on an extension to that. I was just trying to squeeze in the trip to the Pribilofs this year while it's easier to stay domestic and Alaska relaxed its entry requirements, but I just found out that even though I can get to Alaska, because of covid the Pribs just decided they are not allowing any tourists in at all. 🤬

So for now, I'll focus on domestic trips (while expecting my October trip to Brazil will get @#$%-canned). I'm going to Nevada and Idaho in August. The Cassia Crossbill is new and Himalayan Snowcock is new for the ABA - I've seen them in Kazakhstan. I'm also after Grey Partridge for the ABA - it's a real nemesis bird for me in the ABA, even though I've seen them in Europe.

I'm also considering heading for a Kirtland's Warbler in May or June, and if the Brazil trip does get cancelled, I might do a couple pelagic trips in Washington State. Those will at least get me some world lifers.
 
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pbjosh

missing the neotropics
Switzerland
I think the question of "genuses (particularly biggest or most difficult) you've cleaned up" is quite interesting. Also really like your goal Ottavio, I would love to do the same, they are the best birds out there for me. Ultimately, and probably will never happen, I'd love to clean up all Antbirds, Gnateaters, Antpittas, and Antthrushes.

No idea what my largest completed genus would be but it must clearly be neotropical... hrm how to most easily sort that out?
 

DMW

Well-known member
I think Pterocles (14sp) is my best completed genus (also seen the two Syrrhaptes to complete the family). I'm on 55 Phylloscs, and also need Rock Sand to complete Calidris.
Forgot that Seicercus has been subsumed into Phylloscopus, so I'm on 64. Next best completed genera are Tringa and Grus, both 13. Perhaps my most satisfying completed genus is Gorsachius (even though it's just 4 species).
 

sicklebill

well-known Cretaceous relic
Australia
Forgot that Seicercus has been subsumed into Phylloscopus, so I'm on 64. Next best completed genera are Tringa and Grus, both 13. Perhaps my most satisfying completed genus is Gorsachius (even though it's just 4 species).
Yes, it was great pity about that as they seem quite different. I still need White-eared night Heron, and White-bellied Heron to complete Ardea; how about Zosterops? I have 58 (subsuming Woodfordia unfortunately)
 

Trystan

Well-known member
Mine came out at 1004 from 2448 species seen.

Ratio of just under 2:5 would be a good way to compare with people who have bigger and smaller lists. As Genera are quite dynamic in an upward direction, I'd expect the ratios to reduce over time.
 

cajanuma

Well-known member
I think the question of "genuses (particularly biggest or most difficult) you've cleaned up" is quite interesting. Also really like your goal Ottavio, I would love to do the same, they are the best birds out there for me. Ultimately, and probably will never happen, I'd love to clean up all Antbirds, Gnateaters, Antpittas, and Antthrushes.
That's an awesome lifetime goal, but it still pales in comparison to discovering a brand-new antbird of your very own ;)

Cleaning up the cotingas and manakins might be a more manageable (now that Kinglet Calyptura is considered a tyrannid) but still very rewarding goal.

Lots of other cool and charismatic Neotropical genera would also be fun to clean up: Bangsia (only need Blue-and-gold), Micrastur, Atlapetes...
 

Andy Adcock

Well-known member
England
Mine came out at 1004 from 2448 species seen.

Ratio of just under 2:5 would be a good way to compare with people who have bigger and smaller lists. As Genera are quite dynamic in an upward direction, I'd expect the ratios to reduce over time.
Mine too is about 1 in 3.
 

Andy Adcock

Well-known member
England
That's an awesome lifetime goal, but it still pales in comparison to discovering a brand-new antbird of your very own ;)

Cleaning up the cotingas and manakins might be a more manageable (now that Kinglet Calyptura is considered a tyrannid) but still very rewarding goal.

Lots of other cool and charismatic Neotropical genera would also be fun to clean up: Bangsia (only need Blue-and-gold), Micrastur, Atlapetes...
Pittas would be a nice group to complete but probably one of the most expensive since the big split which created numerous, island endemics from Red-bellied.
 

DMW

Well-known member
Yes, it was great pity about that as they seem quite different. I still need White-eared night Heron, and White-bellied Heron to complete Ardea; how about Zosterops? I have 58 (subsuming Woodfordia unfortunately)
I feel the same about Seicercus, but no doubt the genes have spoken. I haven't sorted through my old notes to deal with the Great African Zosterops Split, but I'm definitely shy of 40.
Herons are a family I'd like to complete one day. I've seen all the Ardea herons, but a Forest Bittern-shaped roadblock stands in the way!
 

DMW

Well-known member
Pittas would be a nice group to complete but probably one of the most expensive since the big split which created numerous, island endemics from Red-bellied.
I think when Chris Goodie did his Pitta year, it was a meaningful and worthwhile challenge, but for me at least, the subsequent splitting would take the fun out of things. I think at some point birders ought to consider creating a separate and more stable taxonomy that uses more of a superspecies approach. At some point, spending a week travelling to a remote Indonesian island just to see a Drongo that looks exactly like 50 other Drongos you've already seen loses its appeal.
 

Mysticete

Well-known member
United States
I think when Chris Goodie did his Pitta year, it was a meaningful and worthwhile challenge, but for me at least, the subsequent splitting would take the fun out of things. I think at some point birders ought to consider creating a separate and more stable taxonomy that uses more of a superspecies approach. At some point, spending a week travelling to a remote Indonesian island just to see a Drongo that looks exactly like 50 other Drongos you've already seen loses its appeal
Nothing is really stopping anyone from from accepting a split. And there are probably people who feel a sense of accomplishment getting all of the splits.
 

DMW

Well-known member
Nothing is really stopping anyone from from accepting a split. And there are probably people who feel a sense of accomplishment getting all of the splits.
That's true, but most of us enjoy putting ticks in little boxes and get a sense of accomplishment when we have filled a particular set of boxes. When the number of boxes is suddenly doubled with a raft of minimally different insular forms, it takes some of the fun away. I'm not talking about establishing a rival scientific taxonomy that makes decisions in the same way as IOC etc, but a hobbyist one which treats certain superspecies as species for listing purposes.
 

Mysticete

Well-known member
United States
That's true, but most of us enjoy putting ticks in little boxes and get a sense of accomplishment when we have filled a particular set of boxes. When the number of boxes is suddenly doubled with a raft of minimally different insular forms, it takes some of the fun away. I'm not talking about establishing a rival scientific taxonomy that makes decisions in the same way as IOC etc, but a hobbyist one which treats certain superspecies as species for listing purposes
Yeah, but one person's minimally distinct is another person's obvious split. It's entirely subjective, so I would rather follow a science-based list with some testable criteria, rather than a subjective measure of distinctiveness
 

DMW

Well-known member
Yeah, but one person's minimally distinct is another person's obvious split. It's entirely subjective, so I would rather follow a science-based list with some testable criteria, rather than a subjective measure of distinctiveness
All taxonomic decisions are subjective: they may be informed by science, and some characters may be objectively measurable, but in the end they are nothing more than opinions. Even a cursory reading of decisions by taxonomic committees demonstrates this fact.
 

Arbu

Well-known member
1591 for me, using my Excel spreadsheet, thanks Jacana.

There must be a way of calculating it using a formula rather than having to edit out all the duplicates. Too late in the evening for me to figure it out though.
 

Welsh Peregrine

Well-known member
Largest completed genera
Podiceps (9/9)
Spatula (10/10)

Nearly complete (HBW)
Aquila (10/11)
Egretta (11/12)
Tringa (12/13)
Ardea (13/14)
Calidris (21/24)
Larus (37/42)
 
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia

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