Weaver type collected today2011-03-31 (103)
Today some 117 weaver bird species are recognised. However, over 600 weaver taxa have been described, either as full species or as sub-species. Many of these taxa have been found to not be valid but having been described, they provide published records of specimens. These records may provide important historical records of species occurence. A new feature on the Weaver Watch webpages is giving a weaver type on the day that it was collected. The date of this news item is 31 March, and on this day (in 1908) a weaver was collected that was later described as a new species: Ploceus graueri. This is no longer considered a separate species but it is a Village Weaver.
This particular taxon was collected by Mr Rudolf Grauer at Usumbura, on the north end of Lake Tanganyika, as a series of several individuals. It was described 3 years later by Ernst Hartert, curator of Tring in England. Ernst named it after the collector.
A box on the weaver Watch home page will be updated daily, showing a weaver type that was collected on that day - the box will show the date of collection, the original name and the current species that the taxon belongs to. 247 days of the year are covered, ie. on 118 days no weaver types are known to have been collected.