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Syrmaticus humiae

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA AVES GALLIFORMES PHASIANIDAE

Scientific Name: Syrmaticus humiae
Species Authority: (Hume, 1881)
Common Name(s):
English Mrs Hume's Pheasant, Mrs. Hume's Pheasant, Hume's Bar-tailed Pheasant
Spanish Faisán de Hume

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2012-05-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Contributor(s): Choudhury, A., Eames, J.C., Gale, G., Garson, P., Iamsiri, A., Lianxian, H. & Zaw, U.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Benstead, P., Bird, J., Butchart, S., Harding, M., Keane, A., Mahood, S., Taylor, J.
Justification:
This species is classified as Near Threatened because it has a moderately small, declining and fragmented population, although recent information suggests that it shows some resilience to exploitation and habitat degradation. Its status in Myanmar has been recently clarified, where it is now thought to be secure.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Syrmaticus humiae occurs in Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland and perhaps Arunachal Pradesh (Choudhury 2005, 2009) in north-east India (c.4,000 individuals [Choudhury 2002]) through west, north and east Myanmar (c.6,000 individuals [G. Gale and A. Iamsiri in litt. 2005]), where it has been described as common in Bwe Pa, Chin State (J. Eames in litt. 2004), to Yunnan and Guangxi in south China (population unknown but thought to number in the thousands), and north-west Thailand (Iamsiri and Gale 2004, A. Iamsiri in litt. 2005) (200-500 individuals) (BirdLife International 2001). In India, it appears to be rare, although a recent survey in the north-east confirmed 20 new sites, and 24 others remain unconfirmed (Choudhury 2002). In Nagaland, Manipur and Mizoram the area of suitable habitat for the species is estimated at c.1,600 km2, c.1,700 km2 and c.1,300 km2 respectively (Choudhury 2009). In Myanmar, there is no evidence of any recent declines, and the species may have undergone a range extension (J. Eames in litt. 2004). In China, populations are apparently relatively stable inside protected areas, although remaining rare and difficult to see (Han Lianxian in litt. 2004), but declining rapidly elsewhere. In Thailand, the population is probably declining slowly.

Countries:
Native:
China; India; Myanmar; Thailand
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The population is estimated to number 10,000-19,999 individuals (G. Gale in litt. 2005). This equates to 6,667-13,333 mature individuals, rounded here to 6,000-15,000 mature individuals.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It inhabits open, dry, subtropical evergreen (mainly oak), coniferous (chiefly pine) or mixed conifer-broadleaf forests on steep, often rocky hillsides interrupted by scrub and grassy clearings. It appears to favour broken or successional habitats, with adjacent patches of dense forest, and fire may play an important role (G. Gale in litt. 2005). Although in Ailaoshan Nature Reserve the species prefers broadleaved evergreen forest (Liu Zhao et al. (2008). It is also described as inhabiting secondary and degraded jungle, and frequents the edges of abandoned slash-and-burn cultivation (Choudhury 2009). On Dazhong Mountain.Yunnan, the species's foraging habitats have been shown to be very similar in spring and autumn (Wei Zhou et al. 2010). Roosts are often located along ridges, and in other relatively open areas (Iamsiri and Gale 2004). The species has been observed to feed on oak nuts and termites (Iamsiri and Gale 2004). A recent microscopic analysis of fecal samples collected in Dazhongshan Nature Reserve, Yunnan, found the species's winter diet there to include at least 18 plant species of 12 families, with a clear preference for Athyrium guangnanense and Pseudocystopteris spinulosa (Li Ning et al. 2008).

Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The ease with which it can be trapped has been a major cause of its continuing decline across much of its range, including populations within protected areas. The species is caught by snares set for galliformes, and is usually killed for consumption, or traded for consumption, although many trapped birds will be lost to predators (Choudhury 2009). However, the persistence of the species in northern India and in Thailand suggests that it is resilient in the face of heavy exploitation (Choudhury 2005, P. Garson in litt. 2005, A. Iamsiri in litt. 2005). Extensive shifting cultivation and uncontrolled annual burning has resulted in substantial fragmentation and loss of suitable habitat in Myanmar, China and India. In north Thailand, it has suffered from agricultural intensification and habitat fragmentation resulting from development projects (such as the construction of roads [Choudhury 2009]), and reforestation of large areas with dense conifer plantations may also pose a threat. In parts of north-eastern India, the majority of the rural population practice slash-and-burn cultivation as their main occupation, thus very rapid human population growth and expansion threaten to worsen its impacts (Choudhury 2009). Road construction also facilitates increases in the prevalence of hunting and logging (Choudhury 2009).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
CITES Appendix I. The species is legally protected in India, Thailand, Myanmar and China. Populations persist in several protected areas, including: Tongbiguan, Ailaoshan and Wuliangshan Nature Reserves (China); Murlen and Blue Mountain National Parks, Lengteng and Namdapha Wildlife Sanctuarys (India); and Doi Inthanon, Doi Suthep-Pui (Iamsiri and Gale 2004) and Mae Fang National Parks (A. Iamsiri in litt. 2005) and Doi Chang Dao and Mae Lao Mae Sae Wildlife Sanctuaries (Iamsiri and Gale 2004) (Thailand). A community-based conservation project is planned for one site in Thailand beginning in 2007.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Survey sites in east Yunnan (China), Myanmar and the border states of north-east India for additional populations. Conduct research into its habitat use and tolerance of habitat degradation. Campaign for improved protected status for sites supporting populations, particularly in north-west Thailand, Myanmar and north-east India. Promote stricter control over hunting and habitat encroachment in protected areas supporting significant populations. Designate new protected areas, including Saramati-Fakim, Mt Ziphu, Shiroi and Anko Range in north-eastern India (Choudhury 2009). Set-up small sanctuaries for the species with the help of local communities (Choudhury 2009). Extend existing protected areas, including Murlen, Lengteng, and Phawngpui in Mizoram (Choudhury 2009). Implement controls on slash-and-burn cultivation and fires (Choudhury 2009). Carry out awareness campaigns amongst rural communities (Choudhury 2009). Promote ecotourism within the species's range (Choudhury 2009).


Citation: BirdLife International 2012. Syrmaticus humiae. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 21 December 2014.
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