OW Orioles, Whistlers and Mohouas

The first galleries display portraits of Orioles (Oriolidae), Whistlers (Pachycephalidae) and Mohouas (Mohouidae), see Taxonomy note below. While the second features bird behaviours photos some behaviours Old World orioles inhabit forest and wooded areas often feeding high up in the canopy. I photographed them in Singapore and Australia. I photographed whistlers in Australian habitats that include woodland, rainforest, parkland, mangroves, and scrub. Mohouas inhabits New Zealand’s southern beech forests in Fiordland and Arthur’s Pass. I photographed the endangered Yellowhead at Ulva Island.

OW Orioles, Whistlers and Mohouas

OW Orioles, Whistlers and Mohouas Notes

Except for the endangered Yellowhead, a New Zeeland endemic, all other featured species are ‘Red List 2019’ assessed as ‘Least Concern’.

The gallery displays five whistler species that I photographed in Australia including the Grey Whistler, a Northern Territories endemic.

Three species of OW orioles feature. Australasian Figbirds (Sphecotheres vieilloti) exhibit plumage dimorphism. Displayed images include three sub-species: A male and immature Grey-breasted (nominate) together with male and female Yellow Figbirds (S.v. ashbyi and flaviventris). The other two species are green and black-naped orioles.

Yellowheads are an endangered New Zealand endemic, introduced under a conservation programme to several predator-free off-shore islands such as Stewart Island. I photographed one individual in 2015. The ‘Red List 2019’ reports that it is with a total population of 1000 to 3333 mature individuals.

OW Orioles, Whistlers and Mohouas Notes

OW Orioles and Whistlers Behaviour Notes

The first four images are a short photo essay of an Australian Shrike-thrush (aka Little Shrike-thrush) foraging on the ground at Peterson Creek in Yungaburra. It managed to seek out and devour a spider. Two photos show a Grey Shrikethrush foraging on the ground for seeds and on a river red gum (Eucalyptus camaldulensis) tree-trunk for insects. The other images show feeding and vocalisation behaviour. I’ve included a couple of pictures of the endangered Yellowhead that flew from tree to tree looking for insects.

OW Orioles, Whistlers and Mohouas Taxonomy

Orioloidea is a large grouping in Corvida placed in suborder Passeri. J Boyd Taxonomy in Flux Checklist includes nine Orioloidea families. For clarity, the family tree only includes the three bird families presented in Orioloidea photo album:
(a) Old World Orioles (Oriolidae),
(b) Whistlers (Pachycephalidae),
(c) Mohouas (Mohouidae).

Some authorities lump all the above families in superfamily Corvoidea.