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)

Order Columbiformes
Family Columbidae

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

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

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.

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.

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.

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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