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Island Patterns in the Solomon Islands Bird Fauna

P. J. M. Greenslade
Evolution
Vol. 22, No. 4 (Dec., 1968), pp. 751-761
DOI: 10.2307/2406901
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2406901
Page Count: 11
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Island Patterns in the Solomon Islands Bird Fauna
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Abstract

1) On isolated islands in the Solomons the incidence of endemic taxa varies with island area and distance from source islands. Within the main archipelago this situation is obscured by expansion of endemic taxa from some islands to others. Patterns of faunal affinity originating in this way coincide with a probable immigration route derived independently from a consideration of the relative areas of islands and widths of water barriers. 2) The different island distributions shown by endemic taxa are grouped as stages in a cycle of expansion, subspeciation and finally contraction. The habitats of the species suggest that expansion occurs mainly in coastal situations while the rest of the cycle involves a shift to lowland rain-forest and, increasingly in the final stage, to montane forest. 3) Patterns of island endemism can be related to the degree of isolation of islands from the main immigration route. This leads to the conclusion that in order to account for peculiarities of the fauna of S. Cristoval, the most easterly island, it is unnecessary to suggest a geological history distinct from that of the rest of the Solomons. But it is pointed out that the chief immigration route was possibly exposed as a late Pleistocene land connection.

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