Black-Browed Babbler Rediscovered | 03 Mar 2021

Why in News

Recently, a Black-Browed Babbler (Malacocincla perspicillata) was rediscovered in southeastern Kalimantan, the part of Borneo that is administered by Indonesia.

Key Points

  • History:
    • In the 1840s, a mystery bird was caught on an expedition to the East Indies. It was named as black-browed babbler.
    • The species was never seen in the wild again, and a stuffed specimen featuring a bright yellow glass eye was the only proof of its existence.
      • No Asian bird has been missing for as long as Indonesia’s Black-browed Babbler. It has been missing for the last 170 years.
      • This bird is often called 'the biggest enigma in Indonesian ornithology’.
  • About:
    • It has a strong bill, chocolate colouring and distinctive black eye-stripe, its iris is of striking maroon colour.
    • It has brown wings and a black stripe across its brow.
  • Significance:
    • Discoveries like this give hope that it's possible to find other species that have been lost to science for decades or longer.
      • More than 150 species of birds around the world are considered "lost" with no confirmed sightings in the past decade.
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Source: IE