Aegithalos caudatus japonica Pražák,

Mlíkovský, Jiří, 2011, Nomenclatural and taxonomic status of bird taxa (Aves) described by an ornithological swindler, Josef Prokop Pražák (1870 – 1904), Zootaxa 3005, pp. 45-68: 53-54

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Aegithalos caudatus japonica Pražák


Aegithalos caudatus japonica Pražák 

[ Aegithalus [sic!] caudatus  ] japonica [sic!] Pražák, 1897 e: 291.

NOW. Aegithalos caudatus caudatus (Linnaeus, 1758)  (e.g. Hartert 1905: 382; Snow 1967: 53; Harrap & Quinn 1995: 423; Dickinson 2003: 538; Stepanân 2003: 606) or Aegithalos caudatus japonicus Pražák, 1897  , if Aegithalus caudatus  populations from northern Japan are separated at subspecific level (e.g. Vaurie 1957: 12, 1959: 462; Ornithological Society of Japan 2000: 314). Taxonomy of the Aegithalos caudatus  complex is not sufficiently resolved ( Lafer et al. 2004; Nishiumi & Kim 2004; Eck & Martens 2006; Zink et al. 2008; Päckert et al. 2010), which may further influence the taxonomic fate of Pražák’s japonica.

Syntype. USNM 91549, ad., collected by Thomas Blakiston (his Nr. 3207) on 23 October 1882 at “Sapporo, Yesso” [= Sapporo, Hokkaido], Japan. This specimen was described by Stejneger (1887: 386) as Aegithalos caudatus  .

Syntype. USNM 96147, ad. 3 (?), collected by Thomas Blakiston (his Nr. 3206) on 23 October 1882 at “Sapporo, Yesso” [= Sapporo, Hokkaido], Japan. This specimen was described by Stejneger (1887: 386) sub Aegithalos caudatus  .

Remarks. Pražák (1897 e: 290–291) said that he based this form on four specimens from northern Japan that he examined personally and on two specimens described by Stejneger (1887: 386) from “Yesso” [= Hokkaido] as Aegithalos caudatus  . These six specimens are thus the potential syntypes of Pražák’s japonica (see also Morioka et al. 2005: 63). Both Stejneger specimens are deposited in the USNM ( USNM 91549, 96147; Morioka et al. 2005: 63), but I found no evidence that Pražák personally examined any specimens of A. caudatus  from northern Japan (none were in the NHMW and VTH). It thus seems likely that the type series of A. c. japonica Pražák  consisted only of the two USNM specimens, and the remaining four unspecified specimens should be treated as hypothetical.

Pražák (1897 e: 290) listed “Nördliches Japan ” (“northern Japan ”) as the type locality of his A. c. japonica  . Due to the redefinition of the type series of this form, I here restrict its type locality to Sapporo, island of Hokkaido, Japan [43.05 °N, 141.35 °E].


Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History


Naturhistorisches Museum, Wien














Aegithalos caudatus japonica Pražák

Mlíkovský, Jiří 2011

Aegithalus [sic!] caudatus

Prazak 1897: 291