|Scientific Name:||Pitta venusta|
|Species Authority:||Müller, 1835|
|Red List Category & Criteria:||Vulnerable C2a(i) ver 3.1|
|Reviewer/s:||Butchart, S. & Symes, A.|
This poorly known species qualifies as Vulnerable because it is estimated to have a small population which is declining as a result of continuing forest loss and degradation.
|Range Description:||Pitta venusta is endemic to the highlands of Sumatra, Indonesia (BirdLife International 2001). Records are infrequent, and the species was thought to be rare or very local, occurring in pockets. The apparent paucity of records and known sites may largely reflect a lack of widespread survey coverage. Increasing knowledge of the species's call has led to records at a number of new sites, suggesting that it may not be as rare as previously thought (N. Brickle in litt. 2007). Given the destruction of lowland and lower-montane forest in Sumatra, it must have declined.|
|Range Map:||Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.|
|Population:||The population is estimated to number 2,500-9,999 mature individuals based on an assessment of known records, descriptions of abundance and range size. This is consistent with recorded population density estimates for congeners or close relatives with a similar body size, and the fact that only a proportion of the estimated Extent of Occurrence is likely to be occupied. This estimate is equivalent to 3,750-14,999 individuals, rounded here to 3,500-15,000 individuals.|
|Habitat and Ecology:||It inhabits the floor and undergrowth of hill dipterocarp and lower montane rainforest from 400 m to 1,400 m, frequenting dark, damp areas, in particular ravines under dense cover. It is assumed to be resident, but may perhaps make local altitudinal movements. In general, it is extremely skulking and difficult to observe.|
|Major Threat(s):||Forest loss, degradation and fragmentation are undoubtedly the main threats, as all have been extensive on Sumatra. At least two-thirds to four-fifths of original lowland forest cover and at least one-third of montane forest has been lost, primarily to agricultural encroachment by shifting cultivators, a factor currently affecting large areas of hill dipterocarp and lower montane forest, even within protected areas. In 1984, Kerinci-Seblat National Park was cited as one of the ten most threatened protected areas in the Indo-Malayan Realm, owing to illegal encroachment of farming. At Gunung Singgalang, forest had been cleared up to 1,800-1,900 m as early as 1917, and indeed most recent records are from areas of broken forest with a high pressure from agriculture on their peripheries.|
Conservation Actions Underway
This species has been nominally protected under Indonesian law since 1931. It occurs in Kerinci-Seblat and Bukit Barisan Selatan National Parks, and there are at least 20 protected areas in the Barisan mountain range, although most receive scant protection. Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct extensive surveys for the species (ensuring familiarity with vocalisations to aid detection) in remaining tracts of hill dipterocarp and lower montane rainforest in Sumatra to establish its distribution, status and ecological requirements. Propose key sites for establishment as protected areas, or as extensions to existing reserves. Ensure effective management for Sumatran protected areas. Promote a widespread conservation awareness campaign aimed at reducing rates of forest loss through shifting cultivation.
|Citation:||BirdLife International 2012. Pitta venusta. In: IUCN 2012. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 22 May 2013.|
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