Systematic placement of the bee hummingbird (mellisuga helenae) (aves: Trochilidae) and potential consequences for nomenclature of the mellisugini

Yvonne Lawrie, Thomas J. Shannon, Arturo Kirkconnell, Christopher J. Clark, J. Martin Collinson, Guy M. Kirwan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The Bee Hummingbird (Mellisuga helenae), a Near Threatened Cuban endemic, is iconic for its tiny size, with the male being the smallest bird in the world. In this study, one mitochondrial gene (ND2) and introns of two nuclear genes (encoding adenylate kinase and beta-fibrinogen) were sequenced and aligned to homologous sequences from other hummingbird species. With high statistical support, both Maximum Likelihood and Bayesian analyses resolved the Bee Hummingbird as sister to the Bahama Woodstar (Calliphlox evelynae or Nesophlox evelynae) and the Inagua Hummingbird (C. lyrura), rather than the congeneric Vervain Hummingbird (M. minima). This finding highlights the need for a nomenclatural rearrangement of several hummingbird species, in line with the results of recent molecular phyloge-nies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-50
Number of pages6
JournalOrnitologia Neotropical
Volume32
Issue number1
Early online date25 Jun 2021
Publication statusPublished - 25 Jun 2021

Keywords

  • Calliphlox phylogenetics
  • Ciénaga de Zapata
  • Cuba
  • DNA
  • Nesophlox

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Systematic placement of the bee hummingbird (mellisuga helenae) (aves: Trochilidae) and potential consequences for nomenclature of the mellisugini'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this