AMPHILAIS

(Locustellidae; Ϯ Madagascar Grassbird A. seebohmi) Gr. αμφι amphi  on both sides, about, near; Mod. L. laïs  warbler  < Gr. ὑπολαις hupolais  small unidentified ground-nesting bird; "The genus Dromaeocercus Sharpe, 1877, as construed since 1879, consists of 2 species of sylviid warblers, D. brunneus Sharpe, 1877 and D. seebohmi Sharpe, 1879. Their association, now traditional, may be attributed to their shared characters of long, decomposed rectrices and restriction to Madagascar. In the present article I suggest that these 2 characters have been wrongly emphasized, and that the 2 species in fact belong each to a separate tribe of the Sylviidae, brunneus to the Bradypterini and seebohmi to the Megalurini.  ...  On present evidence, I regard seebohmi as a member of the Megalurini, possibly closest to Megalurus, but in any event sufficiently distinctive to require a separate genus. The type-species of Dromaeocercus being brunneus, and no other generic name being available, I therefore propose: Amphilais, gen. nov.  Type-species. Dromaeocercus seebohmi Sharpe, 1879.  Diagnosis. Resembles Megalurus (especially M. gramineus) and Locustella (especially L. naevia), differing from the former by its finer, glossier plumage and subtler, less contrasting markings, from the latter by its much shorter upper- and under-tailcoverts, rounded wing, longer tenth primary and apparent lack of grasshopper-like song, and from both by its relatively much longer, more graduated and highly decomposed tail" (Parker 1984).

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Recommended citation
Jobling, J. A. (2018). Key to Scientific Names in Ornithology. In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.) (2018). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from www.hbw.com on 10 December 2018).