Victorian Taxidermy-Bird Wing with original old data label dated 1864

£ 140

Data label reads:
Wing of Kafir Finch from
York (Pietermaritz Burg County)
Natal South Africa
Wife’s guard sent Sept 1864.

Length of bird wing 13cm.

Ref: 24507

Bird identification: Bishop-Bird or Black and Red Kafir Finch (old name).
Possibly a Black Bishop (Euplectes gierowii) as at 14 to 16 cm it is the largest for its genus. A species often described as a finch and native to Africa.

Notes: The Black Bishop was first described by the German ornithologist Jean Cabanis in 1880 and named after H. Gierow, a Swedish explorer and collector in Angola.
It’s interesting to note the old data label attached to the bird’s wing that we have for sale here refers to the bird as “Kafir Finch” and records the date collected as Sept 1864 a date that precedes the 1880 date that the Black Bishop was first described by German ornithologist Jean Cabanis.
Raising the question was our bird simply described by its generic local name and not fully recognised at the time. Needless to say, a great curiosity for a cabinet of wonders.