Ornithological Monographs: Ornithology of Sabah: History, Gazetteer, Annotated Checklist and Bibliography.
Sabah is the Malaysian state representing former British North Borneo. It is well known for its rich forests, impressive mountains (including Mt. Kinabalu), and diverse avifauna. Ornithologists have explored and published on the birds of Sabah since the 1850s. This monograph reviews the work of these ornithologists by providing an historical overview of their explorations and studies; a gazetteer describing the sites at which they worked; an annotated checklist summarizing what they learned about birds, particularly in regard to distribution, habitat preferences, and breeding; and a bibliography of ornithological and related publications. The purpose of this report is to set the stage for future research on the birds of Sabah. This goal is accomplished in two ways. First, by reviewing what has been done, the history and gazetteer serve as a guide for expedition planners, wildlife managers, conservationists, and other scientists as they seek information on study sites. Certain parts of Sabah have been well studied (e.g., the east and west coasts), but other areas are poorly explored (e.g., the north-central mountains and the south-central uplands). Second, by summarizing what is known about the birds in Sabah, the annotated checklist and bibliography provide a guide to research needs. Although a great deal is known about the distribution of birds in Sabah, remarkably little work has been done on bird ecology and evolution. Only a handful of modern, quantitative studies have been conducted on the population genetics, phylogeny, biogeography, migration, community ecology, or autecology of Sabah's birds. This dearth of ornithological information is a burden for conservationists, as they struggle to preserve the last bits of forest in Sabah, but it presents a great opportunity for bird researchers.
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|Publication:||Borneo Research Bulletin|
|Article Type:||Brief article|
|Date:||Jan 1, 2005|
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