Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Minas gerais tyrannulet

Phylloscartes roquettei

Photo by Nick Athanas (Antpitta)

Common name:
Minas Gerais tyrannulet (en); cara-dourada (pt); tyranneau de Minas Gerais (fr); orejerito de Minas Gerais (es); gelbbürzel-laubtyrann (de)

Order Passeriformes
Family Tyrannidae

This species is endemic to south-eastern Brazil, only being found in northern Minas Gerais and southern Bahia.

These birds are 11-12 cm long and weigh about 8 g.

The Minas Gerais tyrannulet is found in dry tropical forests, riparian forests and semi-deciduous forests within cerrado including second growths and forest fragments. They occur at altitudes of 400-900 m.

They forage in pairs or family groups, taking small arthropods from the foliage.

Minas Gerais tyrannulets possibly breed in October-February. The nest is a small, globular structure. There is no further information on the reproduction of this species.

IUCN status - EN (Endangered)
This species has a large breeding range but the global population is estimated at just 1.500-7.000 individuals. The population is suspected to be declining at a very rapid rate due to habitat loss through charcoal burning, forest cutting for pasture, cattle ranching and agricultural development. The São Francisco basin is also threatened by limestone quarrying and a large-scale irrigation project that has already resulted in the loss of large areas of forest.

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