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Another Unrecorded Specimen of Neochloe Brevipennis

Frederick W. Loetscher, Jr.
Publication Information
4 (July-August)
From Field and Study

Another Unrecorded Specimen of Neochloe brevipennis,When describing the vireo Neochloe brevipennis brozuni from near Chilpancingo, Guerrero, Mexico, Miller and Ray (Condor, 46, 1944:41-45) listed all six recorded specimens then known of the nominate race. Stresemann (Condor, 49, 1947:210) brought to light a seventh, “collected at the Hacienda de Fuxpango, Orixaba, Vera Cruz, Mexico. Neither date nor collector is indicated on the label, which bears a mysterious original number (No. 27s). Possibly the bird is one of Matte0 Botteri’s specimens . . . .”

Dr. Stresemann’s supposition is almost ,certainly correct, inasmuch as Botteri’s Orizaba specimen in the United States National Museum bears collector’s number 271 (see Baird, Rev. Am. Birds, X%66:372). Moreover, so far as I know, Botteri and Sumichrast were the only men who ever collected birds at Fuxpango, spelled Tuxpango by Sumichrast, who writes (Mem. Bost. Sot. Nat. Hist., 1, 1869:547) : “This exceedingly rare bird has only been found, so far as I am aware, at Oriiaba, by M. Botteri. In the course of many years he was able to procure but a very few specimens.”

An eighth specimen of brevipennis, and apparently the first since Chapman’s three at Jalapa in 1897, was collected by me in dense scrubby second growth a mile south of Jalapa, Veracruz, at about 4500 feet on May 4,1939. It is a breeding male in somewhat worn plumage, with wing 59.5 mm., tail 57, culmen about 10, iris white, and legs and feet slate-black. It is now in the Museum of Comparative Zoology. The bird was retrieved about twenty-five feet up in a tangled mass of vines and had been eating insects and the seeds of an unidentified berry.

On April 20, 1939, I had closely watched a singing Neochloe working slowly through low but rather thick bushes at the edge of a stream between semi-wooded knolls perhaps two miles from where the specimen of May 4 was shot. During about five hours spent at these two stations near Jalapa, the vireos were in sight only a very few minutes, although hundreds of times I heard the song, which is similar to that of the White-eyed Vireo (Vireo grisezrs), though shorter and with less volume and emphasis. My field notes state that it consists of from three to five notes, least often five, most often three, with the stress falling on the third, except when five are given, in which case, the fourth is loudest. A very common bird around Jalapa having a somewhat similar song is Catharw aurantiirostris, but the thrush’s song is longer, more varied, higher pitched and more tinkling than than of the VireO.-FREDERICK W. LOETSCHER, JR., Department of Biology, Centre College, Danville, / Kentucky, November .22,1951. 

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