Réunion Starling Fregilupus varius was endemic to Réunion
(to France). It was described by most visitors to the island
from 1669 onwards, and was apparently common as late as
the 1830s. However, the last specimen was shot in 1837,
and the species became extinct between 1850 and 1860, possibly
due to an introduced disease, combined with changing population
pressure due to the emancipation of slaves in 1848, forest
fires, drought and deforestation. Nineteen stuffed specimens
exist in the world.
Taxonomy Although normally considered a starling, Berger
suggests that the species belonged with the Prionopidae.
Accidentally released in Mauritius in 1835, but did not