Whiteheads – Mohouidae

Yellowhead (Mohoua ochrocephala) ©WikiC & Whitehead

Yellowhead (Mohoua ochrocephala) ©WikiC & Whitehead

Take with you seven pairs of all clean animals, the male and his mate, and a pair of the animals that are not clean, the male and his mate, and seven pairs of the birds of the heavens also, male and female, to keep their offspring alive on the face of all the earth. (Genesis 7:2-3 ESV)

CLASS – AVES, Order – PASSERIFORMES, Family – Whiteheads

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Latest I.O.C. Version
Species (3)

Yellowhead (Mohoua ochrocephala)
Whitehead (Mohoua albicilla)
Pipipi (Mohoua novaeseelandiae)


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Mohoua is a small genus of three bird species endemic to New Zealand. The Latin genus name is taken from either mohuahua or momohua – both Māori names for the Yellowhead. All three species display some degree of sexual dimorphism in terms of size, with the males being the larger of the two sexes. Mohoua are gregarious (more so outside the breeding season) and usually forage in groups . They also forage in mixed species flocks at times, frequently forming the nucleus of such flocks. Unlike most species within Pachycephalidae, social organization and behaviour is well documented for all three Mohoua species; Cooperative breeding has been observed in all three species and is common in the Whitehead and Yellowhead. The three species of this genus are the sole hosts for the Long-tailed Cuckoo which acts as a Brood parasite upon them, pushing their eggs out of the nest and laying a single one of its own in their place so that they take no part in incubation of their eggs or in raising their young. (Wikipedia with editing)

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