Unsorted Wild Birds

Grey Trembler or Martinique Trembler

The Grey Trembler (Cinclocerthia gutturalis) is a songbird species in the family Mimidae.

Distribution / Range

It is found only in Martinique and Saint Lucia, the Martinique Trembler (C. g. gutturalis) on the former island, and the Saint Lucia Trembler (C. g. macrorhyncha) – which might be a distinct species – on the latter.


In 1898 a unique skin was discovered in the World Museum Liverpool. This specimen was obtained by Edward Smith-Stanley, 13th Earl of Derby from bird collector Jules Verreaux in 1850 and has been on display in the Liverpool Museum since then.

It was believed to be an extinct starling from the Mascarenes, described by Henry Ogg Forbes under the name Necropsar leguati and sketched by bird illustrator John Gerrard Keulemans.

A vernacular name for this supposed species was “White Mascarene Starling”.

However, in April 2000 ancient DNA analysis of that skin in the Smithsonian Institution led by Storrs Olson had shown that the Liverpool specimen was nothing more than a misidentified and mislabeled albinistic specimen of C. g. gutturalis.


  • BirdLife International 2004. Cinclocerthia gutturalis. 2006 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Downloaded on 25 July 2007.
  • Raffaele, Herbert; Wiley, James; Garrido, Orlando; Keith, Allan and Raffaele, Janis (2003) Birds of the West Indies, Christopher Helm, London.

Gordon Ramel

Gordon is an ecologist with two degrees from Exeter University. He's also a teacher, a poet and the owner of 1,152 books. Oh - and he wrote this website.

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