Coua verreauxi 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Cuculiformes Cuculidae

Scientific Name: Coua verreauxi Grandidier, 1867
Common Name(s):
English Verreaux's Coua
French Coua de Verreaux
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. Volume 1: Non-passerines. Lynx Edicions BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, UK.
Identification information: A small, greyish arboreal coua. Overall mid-grey, whitish on lower breast and belly, and darker on flight-feathers. Tail dark greyish, long and tipped whitish on outer feathers. Head with long, dark-tipped crest, pale blue bare skin around eye and black bill. Similar spp. From sympatric Crested Coua C. cristata by lack of orange on breast, dark tip to long crest, and smaller blue patch around eye. Crested Coua is usually found in adjacent taller gallery forest. Hints Rather secretive, found in coastal euphorbia scrub, where it is most active at dawn and dusk. Most easily detected by loud descending series of contact calls, "corick-corick-corick-corick".

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2017
Date Assessed: 2017-10-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Symes, A.
Contributor(s): Gardner, J
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Evans, M., O'Brien, A., Robertson, P., Starkey, M., Symes, A., Taylor, J., Westrip, J.
Although this species may have a restricted range, it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (extent of occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). Therefore, the species is now listed as Least Concern.

Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Coua verreauxi has a relatively restricted range in southern and south-western Madagascar, within the southern part of the spiny forest zone. It occurs between the Fiherenana River and the Mandrare River Basin, although it is unclear whether it is continuously distributed within this range (Goodman 2013). Its known range was recently extended north to Salary-Bekodoy Forest (Raselimanana et al. 2012). Few records exceed 40 km inland (Goodman 2013). Within suitable habitat the species can be fairly abundant.

Countries occurrence:
Additional data:
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO):NoEstimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:48600
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO):UnknownExtreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO):No
Continuing decline in number of locations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in the number of locations:No
Upper elevation limit (metres):225
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The population size of this species has apparently not been quantified.

Trend Justification:  The population is suspected to be in decline owing to on-going habitat degradation and hunting pressure (Goodman 2013), although the rate of decline has not been quantified.
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals:UnknownContinuing decline of mature individuals:Yes
Extreme fluctuations:NoPopulation severely fragmented:No
Continuing decline in subpopulations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations:NoAll individuals in one subpopulation:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:It is a bird of semi-arid thorn scrub where it forages for invertebrates, fruits and seeds among trees and bushes, also feeding on the ground (Morris and Hawkins 1998, Goodman 2013). It also feeds on Cassia fruit (del Hoyo et al. 1997) and lizards (Goodman 2013). The species appears to favour thick coastal scrub on coral rag but also occurs outside this habitat, including within degraded areas (ZICOMA 1999). It occurs from sea-level to 250 m (Goodman and Wilmé 2003, Raherilalao and Wilmé 2008). Males have been observed singing from tree tops in November (del Hoyo et al. 1997), and nests and females in breeding condition have been found from October to April (Goodman 2013). Generally it is found singly or in pairs, but after juveniles fledge, family groups will temporarily form (Goodman 2013). 

Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes
Generation Length (years):4.2
Movement patterns:Not a Migrant

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The species's habitat is threatened by wood-cutting for charcoal production, which is widespread, particularly along roads and near to major towns (Langrand 1990). Hunting is also thought to be having a negative impact on the species (Goodman 2013). Climate change may have an indirect effect on this species, via its effect on human populations where this species is found (Segan et al. 2015).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
Some suitable habitat is protected within reserves (Langrand 1990, Goodman 2013).

Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct surveys to obtain a total population estimate. Carry out regular surveys to monitor population trends. Monitor rates of habitat clearance and degradation. Increase the area of habitat that is protected in reserves.

Citation: BirdLife International. 2017. Coua verreauxi. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T22684184A118448748. . Downloaded on 19 March 2018.
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