Zoological Illustrations/VolIII-Pl165

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Zoological Illustrations Volume III Plate 165.jpg

SYLVIA annulosa, (var. β.)

White-eyed Warbler.

Generic Character.—See Pl. 139.

Specific Character.

S. suprà cinerea, infrà albescens, capite, alis uropygioque olivaceo-flavis; jugulo flavescente; palpebris plumis niveis insignibus.
Above cinereous, beneath whitish; head, wings, and rump, olive yellow; throat yellowish; eyes encircled by a ring of snowy feathers.

On first receiving this bird from New Holland, I was inclined to think it a distinct species from the African White-eyed Warbler; but further consideration has led me to adopt a different opinion: it is true that I am unacquainted with any one land bird which is common to both countries, and much weight should be attached to the geographic distribution both of families and species. These two birds, however, differ in their colour, and somewhat in their size. On the other hand, the White-eyed Warbler, as before observed, is found both in Africa and India; and is, therefore, probably migratory. Nature, moreover, is not bound by laws to which there are no exceptions; and the leading points of resemblance between these birds are very strong. On the whole, therefore, I am inclined to consider them as varieties of one species, forming a solitary exception to the general dissimilarity between the birds of Africa and those of New Holland.

Size of the Wood Wren: the head and ears are olive yellow, changing to brighter yellow on the chin, and part of the throat; the neck and back cinereous, graduating to yellowish olive on the rump and upper tail covers; wings the same, the inside of the quills blackish; sides of the throat cinereous; body and under tail covers whitish; the sides tinged with ferruginous; the stripe between the bill and eye is more brown than black; and the white feathers round the eye, not so conspicuous as in the African variety.