Quoy and Gaimard, 1824,
Genetic data indicate that this species is closest to G. albicaudatus#R#R, which it may replace at medium elevations. Formerly placed in Buteo and thought, mistakenly, to be close to Buteo galapagoensis (which see) and to include Buteo ventralis as colour morph (see that species). Long-standing problem of status of form poecilochrous, frequently treated as a full species (e.g. in HBW), requires resolution: one study#R failed to find any reliable diagnostic plumage and measurement differences from nominate, and genetic data#R further supported treatment as conspecific, whereas other studies proposed that the two differ in morphology and body size (from analysis of external measurements of specimens and of live birds), in plumage details (from analysis of plumage sequences) and in ecology, behaving as separate species with no intergradation or clinal gradient between them#R#R#R; detailed study examining displays and vocalizations along the long boundaries where the two taxa supposedly come into contact has been called for, and, pending this work and its findings, the view that a single species is involved#R is accepted here. (If poecilochrous treated as a full species, it would presumably include the newly described fjeldsai#R as a race.) Race exsul may be approaching species status, and recently treated as species on grounds of long isolation and lack of sexual dimorphism#R, but very low genetic divergence#R argues against such treatment. Proposed races peruviensis (Ecuador, Peru), aethiops (C Chile) and erythronotus (S Chile) all included in nominate. Four subspecies recognized.
Introduced (exsul) to Robinson Crusoe I, in Juan Fernández Is.
Food and feeding
Status and conservation
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