Acrocephalus musae ssp. garretti (Holyoak & Thibault)

Huahine Reed-Warbler (Acrocephalus musae ssp. garretti)  

The reed-warblers of the Society Islands were considered as subspecies of the Tahiti Reed-Warbler (Acrocephalus caffer (Sparrman)) until recently, when these forms were examined for their DNA. According to DNA analyses it is now known that the four known forms evolved from three separate colonization events. The reed-warblers of the both islands Huahine and Ra’iatea can be referred to a common ancestor and so can be conflated as two subspecies of a single species. [2]  


The Huahine Reed-Warbler was described in 1978 based on two specimens that had been collected sometimes between 1870 and 1887, the species was probably already long extinct at the date of its description.  

Only about a handful of stuffed specimens exist today in several European museums.  



[1] Erwin Stresemann: Birds collected during Capt. James Cook’s last expedition (1776-1780). Auk 67(1): 66-88. 1950 
[2] Alice Cibois; Jean-Claude Thibault; Eric Pasquet: Systematics of the extinct reed warblers Acrocephalus of the Society Islands of eastern Polynesia. Ibis 150: 365–376. 2008


edited: 17.10.2020