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Gray-coated goggle bird (Zosterops lateralis)

Gray-coated goggle bird ( Zosterops lateralis )

Order : Passerines (Passeriformes)
Subordination : Songbirds (passeri)
without rank: Passerida
Superfamily : Sylvioidea
Family : Spectacled birds (Zosteropidae)
Genre : Zosterops
Scientific name
Vigors & Horsfield , 1827

With around 100 species, Zosterops is the most species-rich genus within the spectacled family. It is traditionally considered part of the independent family of spectacled birds. However, the latest DNA studies (Jønsson & Fjeldså 2006) suggest that the spectacled birds are closely related to the timalia .

The distribution area extends from the Afrotropic , over the oriental to the Australasian ecoregion . The most prominent feature of the spectacle birds is a white eye ring. In some species, however, it can also be black or completely absent. The size of the individual species varies between 8 and 15 centimeters.


Many species of spectacled bird have not yet been adequately researched. The Guambrillevogel ( Zosterops conspicillatus ) was named in 1969 by the Dutch zoologist Gerlof Fokko Mees as the nominate form of Guam Z. c. conspicillatus with the six subspecies Z. c. saypani ( Saipan , Tinian , Aguijan ), Z. c. rotensis ( Rota ), Z. c. semperi ( Palau Islands ), Z. c. owstoni ( Chuuk ), Z. c. takatsukasai ( Pohnpei ) and Z. c. classified hypolais ( Yap ). Mees made the distinguishing features mainly by the size and the color of the plumage. In 1987 the American ornithologist Harold Douglas Pratt revised this system and divided the guambril bird into the three separate species Zosterops conspicillatus , Zosterops semperi and Zosterops hypolais . Pratt's classification is based primarily on differences in song and plumage color. In addition, Pratt argues that Z. conspicillatus , Z. semperi, and Z. hypolais probably do not constitute a monophyletic group due to the complexity of their chants . Z. conspicillatus and Z. hypolais have very complex chants, which, according to Pratt's hypothesis, suggests a Southeast Asian ancestor. Z. semperi has a simple song to which the species of the Melanesian islands tend. On the basis of mtDNA analyzes (Slikas et al. 2000) it was found that the DNA sequences of the Rota- Spectacled Bird differ from those of the Guambrill-Bird, so that this taxon is now also regarded as an independent species.

The following taxa are known:

† = extinct taxon


  • GF Mees: A systematic review of the IndoAustralian Zosteropidae, Part I. In: Zoologische Verhandelingen. 35, 1957, pp. 1-204.
  • GF Mees: A systematic review of the IndoAustralian Zosteropidae, Part II. In: Zoologische Verhandelingen. 50, 1961, pp. 1-168.
  • GF Mees: A systematic review of the IndoAustralian Zosteropidae, Part III. In: Zoologische Verhandelingen. 102, 1969, pp. 1-390.
  • HD Pratt, PL Bruner & DG Berrett: A field guide to the birds of Hawaii and the tropical Pacific. Princeton University Press, Princeton, New Jersey 1987.
  • Beth Slikas , Isaac B. Jones, Scott R. Derrickson & Robert C. Fleischer : Phylogenetic relationships of Micronesian white-eyes based on mitochondrial sequence data. In: The Auk. April 2000, pp. 355-365.
  • Jønsson, Knud A. & Fjeldså, Jon (2006): A phylogenetic supertree of oscine passerine birds (Aves: Passeri). In: Zoologica Scripta. 35 (2), doi : 10.1111 / j.1463-6409.2006.00221.x pp. 149-186.
  • J. Del Hoyo, A. Elliot, and D. Christie (Eds.): Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 13: Penduline-Tits to Shrikes. Lynx Edicions, 2008, ISBN 9788496553453 .

Web links

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