Eleothreptus candicans 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Caprimulgiformes Caprimulgidae

Scientific Name: Eleothreptus candicans
Species Authority: (Pelzeln, 1867)
Common Name(s):
English White-winged Nightjar
Caprimulgus candicans SACC (2005)
Caprimulgus candicans candicans Sibley and Monroe (1990, 1993)
Caprimulgus candicans candicans Stotz et al. (1996)
Caprimulgus candicans candicans BirdLife International (2000)
Caprimulgus candicans candicans Collar and Andrew (1988)
Caprimulgus candicans candicans Collar et al. (1994)
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.
Taxonomic Notes: Caprimulgus candicans (Sibley and Monroe 1990, 1993) is transferred to the genus Eleothreptus following Cleere (2002).

Identification information: 20 cm. Striking, ghostly nightjar. Sandy grey-brown breast and upperparts with vermiculations. Brown face and throat. Off-white moustachial stripe. Dark centre to grey crown. Male has rest of underparts and most of tail white. Central pair of rectrices pale buff. Mostly white wings tipped black, sandy grey-brown inner coverts. Females are browner with dusky barring on tawny-rufous wings and tail. Buff lower underparts. Similar spp. Female Little Nightjar Caprimulgus parvulus is more patterned, with pale throat and distinctive pale spots on wing-coverts. Voice Largely silent, males produce mechanical tuc, trrrrrut noise during display.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered B1ab(iii,v) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2012-05-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Contributor(s): Cartes, J., Grim, T., Hennessey, A. & del Castillo, H.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Capper, D., Pople, R., Sharpe, C J
This species has a very small known range, within which the extent and quality of its habitat is declining. Although the species may well be found to occur at other sites, it is currently known from just four locations, and it hence qualifies as Endangered.

Previously published Red List assessments:
2008 Endangered (EN)
2004 Endangered (EN)
2000 Endangered (EN)
1996 Critically Endangered (CR)
1994 Critically Endangered (CR)
1988 Threatened (T)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Eleothreptus candicans is currently known from Emas National Park, south-west Goiás, Brazil (Rodrigues et al. 1999), Mbaracayú Forest Nature Reserve, Canindeyú (Lowen et al. 1996, Clay et al. 1998, Pople 2003), and Laguna Blanca, San Pedro (Anon. 2002, Guyra Paraguay 2008) Paraguay, and Beni Biological Station, Beni, Bolivia (Davis and Flores 1994, Grim and Šumbera 2006). There are historical records from Mato Grosso and São Paulo, Brazil, and even older evidence of its occurrence in Paraguay (de Azara 1805). In Mbaracayú, there is 10-38 km2 of habitat holding c.40-150 birds (Pople 2003). In the 1980s, the Emas population was assumed to number in the hundreds (if not larger), but density estimates from Mbaracayú suggest that despite the paucity of recent published records (Rodrigues et al. 1999) this may be an underestimate. In Bolivia, the sighting of an adult male in 2003 (Grim and Šumbera 2006) represents the first record at Beni since the initial male was collected in 1987 (Davis and Flores 1994).

Countries occurrence:
Bolivia, Plurinational States of; Brazil; Paraguay
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO): Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO): No
Estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2: 3100
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO): Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO): No
Number of Locations: 4
Continuing decline in number of locations: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in the number of locations: No
Lower elevation limit (metres): 170
Upper elevation limit (metres): 1000
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The population is estimated to number 1,000-2,499 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 667-1,666 mature individuals, rounded here to 600-1,700 mature individuals.

Trend Justification:  A population decline is suspected on the basis of large-scale destruction of cerrado habitats within its range as a whole, and ongoing degradation of habitats at known sites. However, the likely rate of decline has not been estimated.
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals: 600-1700 Continuing decline of mature individuals: Yes
Extreme fluctuations: No Population severely fragmented: No
No. of subpopulations: 2-100 Continuing decline in subpopulations: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations: No All individuals in one subpopulation: No
No. of individuals in largest subpopulation: 1-89

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: In Paraguay, home ranges primarily comprise wet grassland and "campo cerrado", the latter with a mixture of palms Butia paraguayensis and termite mounds (Pople 2003). In Brazil, it has been recorded mainly in "campo limpo" with abundant termite mounds. When foraging, it prefers areas of younger vegetation, perhaps due to the increased insect prey they support (Rodrigues et al. 1999, Pople 2003). Known populations are apparently sedentary (Pople 2003), although there may be local movements in response to fires. Suggestions that it may be migratory in parts of its range (Cleere and Nurney 1998) are not supported by current knowledge (Rodrigues et al. 1999, Pople 2003) or the apparent source of this information (de Azara 1805). In Paraguay, the breeding season extends from September to January (Pople 2003). The breeding system, male nuptial display, nest-site, eggs and chicks have all been described recently (Clay et al. 2000, Pople 2003).

Systems: Terrestrial
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat: Yes
Generation Length (years): 5.4
Movement patterns: Not a Migrant

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Known populations are relatively well protected, but two-thirds of the Cerrado region had been heavily or moderately altered by 1993 (Conservation International 1999), with most of the destruction having occurred since 1950 (Cavalcanti 1999). The principal threats are grazing, invasive grasses (Pople 2003, Guyra Paraguay 2008), inappropriate fire regimes (Rodrigues et al. 1999, Pople 2003) and conversion to agriculture for Eucalyptus plantations, pasture, soybeans and other exportable crops (encouraged by government land reform in Brazil) (Stotz et al. 1996, Parker and Willis 1997).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
It is protected under Paraguayan law where it is considered Endangered at a national level (H. del Castillo in litt. 2012). It occurs in Emas National Park, Mbaracayú Forest Nature Reserve and Beni Biological Station, and is protected under Brazilian law. Attempts are being made to secure the purchase of Laguna Blanca (J. L. Cartes in litt. 2007). A three-year study of its breeding biology, ranging behaviour and habitat use in Paraguay was completed in 2001 (Pople 2003).

Conservation Actions Proposed
Survey areas of suitable cerrado habitat in Brazil, north-east Paraguay and Bolivia. Utilise the survey techniques developed in Paraguay to estimate the population in Emas. Establish fire management regimes at protected sites, to create and maintain mosaics of vegetation ages, and prevent uncontrollable, destructive wildfires during the breeding season (Pople 2003). Monitor and control the spread of invasive grass species. Secure further private protected areas within the Cerrado de Laguna Blanca IBA (H. del Castillo in litt. 2012).

Citation: BirdLife International. 2012. Eleothreptus candicans. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2012: e.T22689826A37957378. . Downloaded on 01 December 2015.
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