Leafbirds are also “rainbow” birds

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!GY4T8918 [The blue-winged leafbird (Chloropsis cochinchinensis)]

The leafbirds (Chloropseidae) are a family of small passerine bird species found in India, Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia. There are 11 species all in the genus Chloropsis.

Like many parrots, as I discussed here, they have “rainbow plumage” which shows adjacent colours which are also adjacent on the visual spectrum (of which the order is: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet). Notice in the pictures below how yellow and green areas of plumage, and green and blue, for example are often found right next to each other. Also orange and yellow are found together, and maybe blue and violet.

Many, but not all, parrots have plumage in which adjacent colours are also adjacent in the visual spectrum. However, it appears that all leafbirds show the effect. I have discussed possible adaptive reasons for this in the case of parrots here.

Illustrations of the eleven species of leafbird are below.

Orange-bellied leafbird (Chloropsis hardwickii):

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!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Orange-bellied-Leafbird

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Orange-belliedLeafbird

Blue-winged leafbird (Chloropsis cochinchinensis):

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Chloropsis_cochinchinensis_-Singapore-8

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Golden-fronted leafbird (Chloropsis aurifrons):

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!22021499.GF_Leafbird1copy

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!gf_leaf_bird_male_bm

Jerdon’s leafbird (Chloropsis jerdoni):

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Blue-masked leafbird (Chloropsis venusta):

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!download (11)

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Yellow-throated leafbird (Chloropsis palawanensis)

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!10_27_007_Chloropsis palawanensis

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Lemon-throated-leaf-birdtrek

Lesser Green Leafbird (Chloropsis cyanopogon):

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Lesser_Green_Leafbird_(Female)

Philippine leafbird (Chloropsis flavipennis):

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!leaf2

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!newleaf3

Greater green leafbird (Chloropsis sonnerati):

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Chloropsis_sonnerati-20030531

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!350px-Greater_Green_Leafbird-2 (female)

Sumatran leafbird (Chloropsis media):

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!download (11)

Bornean leafbird (Chloropsis kinabaluensis):

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1220px-ChloropsisKinabaluensisKeulemans

One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Julian O'Dea on March 29, 2015 at 6:07 am

    http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/1/2/e1400155

    “Natural and sexual selection act on different axes of variation in avian plumage color”

    Reply

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