Papers in the Biological Sciences


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Published in Johnsgard in CONDOR (January 1970) 72(1). Copyright 1970, University of California and Cooper Ornithological Society. Used by permission.


The exceedingly close affinities of the quail genera Colinus, Callipepla, and Lophortyx have been recognized for some time and have recently been emphasized by additional morphological (Holman 1961; Hudson et al. 1966), biochemical (Sibley 1960), and pterylographic (Ohmart 1967) evidence. Indeed, Holman has suggested that these three taxa might best be regarded as subgenera. Phillips et al. (1964) pragmatically merged Lophortyx with Callipepla; and Delacour (1961-1962) synonymized not only Lophortyx, but also Oreortyx and Philortyx, with Callipepla, yet retained Colinus as a separate genus. Although Ohmart (1967) questioned the validity of generically separating Lophortyx and Callipepla, he suggested that any new taxonomic reorganization should also include consideration of such related genera as Colinus


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