Splitting headaches? Recent taxonomic changes affecting the British and Western Palearctic lists

Published on 01 June 2006 in Main articles

ABSTRACT This paper summarises the taxonomic changes that have affected the BOU British List and the British Birds Western Palearctic list since 2000. The purpose of this review is to present these changes simply and clearly, in a single document to provide an easy reference, and to give brief, non-technical explanations of the reasons underlying the decisions. Similar updates will be provided in future in BB on a more regular basis.The editorial policy of British Birds is to follow taxonomic changes adopted by the British Ornithologists’ Union Records Committee on the recommendation of its Taxonomic Subcommittee (TSC). For Western Palearctic taxa that are outside the remit of the BOURC, recommendations of the Taxonomic Advisory Committee (TAC) of the Association of European Records and Rarities Committees (AERC) are normally followed. Both the BOURC TSC and the AERC TAC have published several relevant papers since 2000 that alter the taxonomy of the British and Western Palearctic lists: Knox et al. (2002), Sangster et al. (2002a), AERC (2003), Sangster et al. (2004a) and Sangster et al. (2005). The following summary is in no way intended to replace the properly referenced statements contained in those publications. These papers, with the exception of Sangster et al. (2002a), are available online at http://www.bou.org.uk/recbrlst.html and http://www.aerc.eu. Species-level decisions are made by the TSC on the basis of the committee’s Guidelines (Helbig et al. 2002), which is also available online at http://www.bou.org.uk/ recbrlst.html. This paper summarises the decisions contained in these papers, for easy reference and to act

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