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5 new species from the Eastern Himalayas

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spotted wren-babbler (Elachura formosa)
credit: Ramki Sreenivasan Conservation India

Spotted wren-babbler

The Eastern Himalayas are home to a staggering number of different types of birds, one tenth of all known birds species can be found in the region. In 2014, this spotted wren-babbler (Elachura formosa) was added to the taxonomic records for the first time. It is the only member of a unique family of birds—Elachura. Males have a distinctive high-pitched call, which is how biologists discovered this species, which closely resembles known species of wrens and wren-babblers. Molecular sequencing confirmed that the bird in fact is a unique species.

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