Coccyzus ferrugineus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Cuculiformes Cuculidae

Scientific Name: Coccyzus ferrugineus Gould, 1843
Common Name(s):
English Cocos Cuckoo
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: 33 cm. Brightly coloured cuckoo. Slaty-grey crown and blackish mask. Greyish-brown upperparts. Bright rufous wings. Uniform, rich buff underparts. Black tail with broad white tipped rectrices. Bright yellow eye-ring. Black bill with yellow lower mandible tipped black. Immature has indistinct tail pattern. Similar spp. Yellow-billed Cuckoo C. americanus has white underparts. Mangrove Cuckoo C. minor has greyish wings and brown mantle. Black-billed Cuckoo C. erythropthalmus has black bill and white underparts. Voice Deep, dry kcha repeated 5-8 times, sometimes preceded by rolling rattles. Also guttural k'k'k'k'ru'hoo.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable D1+2 ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2016-10-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Contributor(s): Sherry, T. & Stiles, F.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Benstead, P., Isherwood, I., Sharpe, C.J., Taylor, J.
This species is classified as Vulnerable because it has a very small range and population. Introduced herbivores are degrading forests in its range, but it appears to tolerate some habitat modification and there is (as yet) no evidence of a decline in its range or population. Regular surveys are required so that trend data can be collected, and if it is found to be in decline it may warrant uplisting to Critically Endangered.

Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Coccyzus ferrugineus is endemic to Cocos Island, c.500 km from the coast of Costa Rica. It is widespread and probably under-recorded in suitable habitat, but the extent of such habitat is very limited (F. G. Stiles in litt. 1999). The total population is probably significantly below 1,000 individuals, and it is the least common of the endemic land birds on the island.

Countries occurrence:
Costa Rica
Additional data:
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO):NoEstimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:30
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO):UnknownExtreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO):No
Number of Locations:1Continuing decline in number of locations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in the number of locations:No
Upper elevation limit (metres):570
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The total population is probably significantly below 1,000 individuals (F. G. Stiles in litt. 1999). It is placed in the band 250-999 mature individuals, equating to 375-1,499 individuals in total, rounded here to 350-1,500 individuals.

Trend Justification:  The effects of the potential threats to this species are uncertain or unquantified, and in the absence of any serious and immediate threats the population is suspected to be stable.
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals:250-999Continuing decline of mature individuals:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations:NoPopulation severely fragmented:No
No. of subpopulations:1Continuing decline in subpopulations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations:NoAll individuals in one subpopulation:Yes
No. of individuals in largest subpopulation:100

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:It frequents second growth forest, Hibiscus thickets and streamside vine-tangles, feeding on large insects and lizards Anolis sp. (Stiles and Skutch 1989). There are apparently no published observations of the species nesting (T. Sherry in litt. 2007).

Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Unknown
Generation Length (years):3.8
Movement patterns:Full Migrant

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Cats are potential predators of adults, fledglings and nests, whilst rats are potential nest predators. Feral deer, pigs and goats graze suitable habitat. Pigs especially devastate the lower strata and understorey of native forests and inhibit forest regeneration (Sherry 1985, F. G. Stiles in litt. 1999). On many other islands, this combination of feral mammals has caused the extinction of numerous endemic plant and animal species. There is also low-level disturbance from increasing tourism (Sherry 1985). Global climate change might pose a threat in the future, perhaps through the effects of changes in weather patterns (T. Sherry in litt. 2007).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
Cocos Island has been designated as a national park, but no substantive measures have been taken to reduce populations of introduced mammals (F. G. Stiles in litt. 1999).

Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct surveys to estimate the population, perhaps using call play-back and mist-netting (T. Sherry in litt. 2007). Monitor population trends through regular surveys. Carry out research into the species's breeding biology (T. Sherry in litt. 2007). Study the impact of introduced mammals. Begin to eradicate introduced mammals where feasible.

Citation: BirdLife International. 2016. Coccyzus ferrugineus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T22684340A93026551. . Downloaded on 22 July 2018.
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