OSME Region List (ORL) version 3.3α

The ORL version 3.3 was published in early July 2016 in a β-version to meet the planned schedule of two updates per year. Several important papers were at that time unobtainable, as were a number of older documents that we sought to review for relevant information, but we expected them to become accessible in the near future. That proved to be the case, and so the α-version could be compiled in short order. Below is the summary of changes since version 3.2 – it also appears on the ORL homepage at . .

OSME Region List version 3.2 – a precis of changes

There have been numerous taxonomic and related developments since v3.1.

  1. Several former Puffinus taxa have been transferred to a restored genus, Ardenna, making most groups monophyletic (Christides & Boles 2008).
  2. Purple Swamphen has been split (IOC5.3) pretty well as ORL3.1 had forecast.
  3. From the thesis of Cohen 2011, we have revised most of the Sandgrouse, enlarging Syrrhaptes at the expense of Pterocles, but Cohen 2011 did not sample all taxa, and so further revision may occur.

The 2015 OSME Region List and its underpinning taxonomy

The taxonomy in del Hoyo, J and NJ Collar. 2014HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World Volume 1: Non-passerines. (Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. 903 pages, hundreds of colour plates) employs the Tobias et al 2010 system of quantitative criteria for species delimitation (See on-line reference for free PDF). The Tobias system, which aimed to provide a working set of criteria that would improve consistency of 

The OSME Region: birds of the deep-ocean

The OSME region has its fair share of thinly-inhabited areas where knowledge of breeding distribution and how birds use such areas is poor to non-existent, primarily because of low observer density and lack of regular observation and monitoring. Yet in principle, designing research programmes to put right this deficit is straightforward. At sea, it’s a very different matter.

The easier part of developing knowledge of seabirds concerns the coastal waters of mainland and islands, but given that the breeding areas of Jouanin’s Petrel