Tuesday, October 18, 2011

It's a Violated Trogon!

"I saw a violated trogon!"

What a chuckle we got out of that when a beginning birder shared his excitement over seeing the Violaceous Trogon. Now there are no more Violaceous Trogons or Trogon violaceus at Chan Chich Lodge.  Oh the birds are still here, but now we must call them by their new official name: the "Gartered Trogon (Trogon caligatus)." 

Who comes up with these names?  Well, in the case of North, Central and South America, that would be the august members of the American Ornithologists' Union (AOU).  As science marches on, ornithologists are uncovering minute differences in some populations of species that had been lumped together as one.  Often these differences have been detectable via recent DNA studies and are thus responsible for some some populations being split off and renamed.  In the case of the attractive bird above, apparently there was a slight difference in the call of the Gartered v. the Violaceous trogon and a slight difference in color. So  "violated" no more, we now have added the Gartered Trogon to Chan Chich  list.


1 comment:

  1. Why was the name "gartered" chosen? I have seen a number of these birds and none of them looked like they were wearing stockings or socks!