Thursday, 23 May 2013

Negros bleeding-heart

Gallicolumba keayi

Photo by Rob Hutchinson (Oriental Bird Images)

Common name:
Negros bleeding-heart (en); coração-sangrante-de-Negros (pt); gallicolombe de Negros (fr); corazón sangrante de Negros (es); Negros-dolchstichtaube (de)

Taxonomy:
Order Columbiformes
Family Columbidae

Range:
This species is endemic to the Philippines, where it is found on the islands of Negros and Panay.

Size:
These birds are 25-30 cm long and weigh 175-206 g.

Habitat:
The Negros bleeding-heart is mostly found in dense, closed-canopy rainforests, but also tolerates some secondary forest habitats, including selectively logged forests on limestone, and open and severely degraded forests with a few large trees. They are present at altitudes of 300-1.200 m.

Diet:
There is no information available on the diet of this species, but they mostly forage on the ground and are likely to have an omnivorous diet like similar pigeons.

Breeding:
Negros bleeding-hearts breed in May-August. The female lays 2 eggs which are incubated by both parents for 14-16 days. The chicks are fed by both parents and fledge 12-14 days after hatching, but continue to receive food from the father for another 2 weeks.

Conservation:
IUCN status - CR (Critically Endangered)
This species has a relatively small and fragmented breeding range and the global population is estimated at just 70-400 individuals. The Negros bleeding-heart was fairly common in the 19th century, but become increasingly rare by the 1930s, a decline that is possibly still going on mainly due to habitat loss and fragmentation through clearance for agriculture, timber and charcoal-burning. Primary forests have almost been totally destroyed in both Negros and Panay, where less than 10% of the surface are covered by forests of any kind. Trapping and hunting for food and for the cage bird trade may also be a problem for this species. Some conservation actions are underway, including the protection of some of the remaining primary forests patches in Negros can captive breeding for future reintroduction.

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