New Azorean endemic Chaffinch species

Mar 3, 2023

Phylogenetic tree of the evolution of chaffinches (Recuerda et al 2021).

© by Carlos Ribeiro

In celebration of the World Wildlife Day, the ABP announces that the International Ornithological Committee (IOC) will recognize the split of Chaffinch into five different species as part of the next update to its World Bird List.

A genetic study by Recuerda et al 2021 recommended that the Chaffinch complex should be divided into five separate species, namely nominate coelebs of Eurasia, African Chaffinch Fringilla spodiogenys (including subspecies africana and harterti), Azores Chaffinch Fringilla moreletti, Madeira Chaffinch Fringilla maderensis and Canary Islands Chaffinch Fringilla canariensis (including subspecies bakeri, ombrios, and palmae).

The IOC stated its intention to recognise the findings and accept the five-way split of Chaffinch as part of version 13.2 of its World Bird List, which will be published in the summer.

This means that the Azorean Endemic subspecies Fringilla coelebs moreletti Pucheran, 1859 will soon become Fringilla moreletti.