Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Coraciiformes Alcedinidae

Scientific Name: Alcedo hercules
Species Authority: Laubmann, 1917
Common Name(s):
English Blyth's Kingfisher
Taxonomic Source(s): del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A. and Fishpool, L.D.C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Lynx Edicions BirdLife International.

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.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Benstead, P., Gilroy, J., Khwaja, N., Taylor, J.
This species exists at naturally low numbers, as a result of its narrow habitat requirements, thus it may have a moderately small population, and is likely to be declining as a result of habitat loss and fragmentation throughout its range. It is therefore listed as Near Threatened.

Previously published Red List assessments:
2008 Near Threatened (NT)
2004 Near Threatened (NT)
2000 Lower Risk/near threatened (LR/nt)
1996 Vulnerable (VU)
1994 Vulnerable (VU)
1988 Threatened (T)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Alcedo hercules occurs in southern China (rare), eastern Nepal (vagrant), Bhutan (rare), north-east India (rare), Bangladesh (vagrant), Myanmar (scarce to fairly common in the north, west and south), north-west Thailand (very rare visitor), Laos (uncommon to locally common in the north and Annamite mountains, scarce further south) and Vietnam (locally fairly common in west Tonkin and Annam). Given its linear distribution along rivers, and thus restricted Extent of Occurrence, the total population size is possibly moderately small.

Countries occurrence:
Bhutan; China; India; Lao People's Democratic Republic; Myanmar; Thailand; Viet Nam
Bangladesh; Nepal
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO): Yes
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO): No
Estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2: 855000
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO): Yes
Extreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO): No
Continuing decline in number of locations: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in the number of locations: No
Lower elevation limit (metres): 200
Upper elevation limit (metres): 1200
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The global population size has not been quantified, although the population in China has been estimated at fewer than 100 breeding pairs (Brazil 2009).

Trend Justification:  Precise data on trends are lacking, but slow to moderate declines are suspected to have occurred owing to a variety of human pressures.
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals: Unknown Continuing decline of mature individuals: Yes
Extreme fluctuations: No Population severely fragmented: No
Continuing decline in subpopulations: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations: No All individuals in one subpopulation: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is found along streams in evergreen forest and adjacent open country at 200-1,200 m, mainly 400-1,000 m.

Systems: Terrestrial; Freshwater
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat: Yes
Generation Length (years): 4.4
Movement patterns: Not a Migrant

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species is still widespread at low densities within its historical range, although deforestation is reducing and fragmenting its habitat, and human disturbance and river pollution are possibly also threats.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
None are known.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct repeated surveys throughout its range to clarify its current population status, as well as assess population trends and rates of range contraction. Conduct ecological studies to identify habitat associations and potential threats. Grant protection to areas of suitable habitat. Enforce laws against river pollution where applicable. Strengthen legislation against aquatic pollution throughout the species's range.

Citation: BirdLife International. 2012. Alcedo hercules. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2012: e.T22683024A40554397. . Downloaded on 13 October 2015.
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