Goodenough Island Bird

Mystery Bird of Australasia.

Physical description: Black plumage. Size of a small crow. Long tail.

Behavior: Call is a short, explosive rattle. Distribution: Goodenough Island, Papua New Guinea.

Significant sightings: One member of the 1953 Fourth Archbold Expedition saw a crow-sized, black bird high in the treetops on Good-enough.

Zoologist James Menzies saw a group of these birds in the forest canopy of Mount Oiamadawa on December 28, 1975. Possible explanations:

(1) An unknown species of Bird of paradise (Astrapia sp.), Honeyeater (Meliphaga sp.), or Drongo (Family Dicruridae).

(2) The Paradise crow (Lycocorax pyrrhopterus), suggested by Karl Shuker, although this is thought to be endemic to Halmahera, Bacan, Obi, and adjacent islands in Indonesia.

Source: Bruce M. Beehler, A Naturalist in New Guinea (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1991), pp. 81-83, 104-105; Karl Shuker, Mysteries of Planet Earth (London: Carlton, 1999), pp. 54-56.

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