Usually includes Z. mayottensis and Z. kirki, and recent molecular evidence suggests that these taxa sit within the Z. maderaspatanus clade, with species groups in present species roughly equally distinct genetically#R so that all might better be treated as conspecific or all split#R; nevertheless, taxa remaining in present species far more uniform in plumage. Race menaiensis poorly defined and of uncertain validity, but its different calls (which some authors consider to indicate species rank) argue for its retention, pending further studies; this in turn makes it plausible to contemplate resurrecting gloriosae on Glorioso Is, as NHMUK specimen material suggests paler grey flanks and marginally larger, deeper bills. Proposed form hovarum (Madagascar), once allowed species rank, invalid; original description based on an aberrant individual (with grey upperparts), other examples of which have been found on Cosmolédo Atoll (SW Seychelles). Additional described taxa from Madagascar are ampotakae (a small form at Ampotaka, in dry SW plain) and analogus (a slightly larger montane form from Manjakatompo, in Ankaratta Mts); both are treated as synonyms of nominate. Six subspecies recognized.
Food and feeding
Status and conservation
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