North American Birds

VOLUME 69 No1 2016

A Quarterly Journal of Ornithological Record Published by the American Birding Association. The mission of the journal is to provide a complete overview of the changing panorama of our continent’s birdlife.

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T H E M E N D O C I N O S H R I K E 9 V O L U M E 6 9 ( 2 0 1 5 ) • N U M B E R 1 dusty pinkish or rosy coloration to the sides and fanks. They are unique among this spe - cies assemblage in having a distinctly pat- terned, black-and-white tail. Turkestan Shrike breeds in Iran north to southern Kazakhstan and east to the southern Altai region (Figure 4). The winter ranges of Turkestan and Isabelline Shrikes are poorly defned and overlap (Worfolk 2000), due in part to an extra degree of diffculty in identi - fying females and frst-cycle birds away from the breeding grounds; however, it appears as though the Turkestan Shrike winters largely in eastern Africa (Figure 4). Adult male Turke - stan Shrikes tend to have a reddish-brown crown, a distinct white supercilium, medium brown to grayish back, and white underparts with relatively restricted pale apricot-orange coloration to the sides and fanks. In all age/ sex groups, the rump and uppertail coverts are cinnamon-red to pinkish red, and the tail is a fairly bright cinnamon-red. Isabelline Shrike breeds primarily in Mon - golia and north-central China and winters from the southern Arabian Peninsula east through Pakistan and western India (Figure 4). Isabelline Shrike is polytypic, with three subspecies recognized. The more migratory northern subspecies, breeding from the Altai region through Mongolia, is here considered the nominate subspecies, L. i. isabellinus, fol - lowing Pearson et al. (2012; see also Pearson 2000, Panov 2009, Panov et al. 2011). Adult males of this subspecies tend to have uniform - ly medium to pale brown crowns and backs, lack a distinct supercilium, and show exten - sive apricot coloration to the sides and fanks that often extends to the throat and auriculars. The rump, uppertail coverts, and tail in all age/ sex groups are cinnamon, averaging paler than 3e 3f 3d (2015) in recognizing the above four distinct species within this assemblage, including the Turkestan (or Red-tailed) Shrike as a full spe - cies, separate from Isabelline Shrike, where it has often been placed as a subspecies. Red-backed Shrike breeds in Europe and Turkey east to northern Kazakhstan and the Altai region of south-central Russia and win - ters primarily in southern Africa (Figure 4). Eastern and southern populations, regarded by many as subspecies pallidifrons and kobylini, respectively, average smaller, duller, and paler than western populations (Cramp and Perrins 1993). Adult male Red-backed Shrikes have gray crowns, reddish-brown upperparts, and in Turkestan Shrike. The subspecies tsaidam - ensis and arenarius, which breed to the south of nominate isabellinus, are less migratory and show muted pallid plumage features that are too dull for the Mendocino shrike. Therefore, further consideration of Isabelline Shrike in this paper will refer to nominate isabellinus. Brown Shrike is also polytypic, with up to four subspecies recognized. The nominate subspecies, cristatus, is the longest-distance migrant of the four, breeding from the west - ern Anadyr River basin to northern Mongolia and wintering primarily in southern India and Southeast Asia (Figure 4). To the southeast, lu - cionensis breeds in eastern China and parts of

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