Yellow-rumped Honeyguide / Indicator xanthonotus

Yellow-rumped Honeyguide / Indicator xanthonotus

Yellow-rumped Honeyguide

SCI Name:  Indicator xanthonotus
Protonym:  Indicator xanthonotus J.Asiat.Soc.Bengal 11 p.116
Taxonomy:  Piciformes / Indicatoridae /
Taxonomy Code:  yerhon1
Type Locality:  Darjeeling.
Publish Year:  1842
IUCN Status:  


(Indicatoridae; Ϯ Greater Honeyguide I. indicator) L. indicator, indicatoris  guide, one that points out  < indicare  to show  < index, indicis  sign, informer  < in  among; dicere  to tell (cf. specific name Cuculus indicator Sparrman, 1777); "The Dutch settlers thereabouts have given this bird the name of Honiguyzer, or Honey-guide, from its quality of discovering wild honey to travellers  ...  Not only the Dutch and Hottentots, but likewise a species of quadruped named Ratel (probably a new species of Badger), are frequently conducted to wild bee-hives by this bird, which, as it were, pilots them to the very spot. The honey being its favourite food, its own interest prompts it to be instrumental in robbing the hive, as some scraps are commonly left for its support" (Sparrman in Stephens 1815);  "INDICATOR. HONEY-GUIDE ...  THE Honey-guides form a very peculiar genus ...  the feathers are short, hard, and pressed close to the body: the skin is thick, and the fibres so close that it is difficult to pierce it even with a pin, an admirable provision of nature to guard these birds against the stings of bees, as it forms an almost impenetrable coat of mail. Sparrman first described the Honey-guide, which he placed in the genus Cuculus, to which it is only related in having the toes placed two and two.   ...   SPARRMAN'S HONEY-GUIDE. (Indicator Sparrmanii.)   ...   GREAT HONEY-GUIDE. (Indicator major.)   ...   LITTLE HONEY-GUIDE. (Indicator minor.)" (Stephens 1815); "Indicator Stephens, in Shaw's Gen. Zool., 9, pt. 1, 1815, p. 131. Type, by tautonymy, Indicator Sparrmanii Stephens = Cuculus indicator Sparrman." (Peters 1948, VI, 65).  The Greater Honeyguide is well known for leading mammals (especially the Ratel and man) to bees’ nests, enabling the stronger mammal to break open the nests and benefit from the honey, whilst the honeyguide eats the grubs, bees, and wax. Local superstition demands that some token honey is left for the honeyguide, otherwise it will next lead the searcher to stumble upon a hidden leopard or venomous snake.
Synon. Melignostes, Melignothes, Meliphagus, Melipodagus, Morocus, Prodotes, Pseudofringilla, Pseudospiza.

L. indicator, indicatoris  guide, one that points out  < indicare  to show  < index, indicis  sign, informer  < in  among; dicere  to tell.
● “Greenish above, greyish below, which with white tail make it look like large honeyguide” (Keith et al. (ed.) 1992) (Baeopogon).

Gr. ξανθος xanthos  yellow; -νωτος -nōtos  -backed  < νωτον nōton  back.

(syn. Oriolus Ϯ Dark-throated Oriole O. xanthonotus) Specific name Oriolus xanthonotus Horsfield, 1821; "Ce cinquième genre est nommé par nous Xanthonotus, d'après son unique espèce, pour laquelle il faudra adopter comme nom spécifique celui de leucogaster, imposé par Reinwardt, par cet illustre professeur de l'Université de Leyde, qui vient d'être enlevé à la science" (Bonaparte 1854).


Yellow-rumped Honeyguide (xanthonotus)
SCI Name: Indicator xanthonotus xanthonotus
Gr. ξανθος xanthos  yellow; -νωτος -nōtos  -backed  < νωτον nōton  back.

Yellow-rumped Honeyguide (radcliffii)
SCI Name: Indicator xanthonotus radcliffii
radcliffei / radcliffii
● Lt.-Col. Henry Delmé-Radcliffe (1866-1947) British Army in Burma 1909 (Actinodura, syn. Heterophasia melanoleuca).
● Lt.-Col. Emilius Charles Delmé-Radcliffe (1833-1907) British Army in India, falconer (subsp. Indicator xanthonotus).
● Brig.-Gen. Sir Denis John Charles Delmé-Radcliffe (1864-1937) British Army in India 1884-1890, and Uganda 1898-1904, Military Attaché at Rome 1906-1911 (subsp. Tricholaema lacrymosa).