Ptilinopus chalcurus


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Ptilinopus chalcurus
Species Authority: Gray, 1859
Common Name(s):
English Makatea Fruit-dove, Makatea Fruit Dove, Makatea Fruit-Dove

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable D1+2 ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2012-05-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Symes, A. & Butchart, S.
Contributor(s): Raust, P., Thibault, J. & Kesler, D.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Derhé, M., Mahood, S., O'Brien, A., Pilgrim, J., Stattersfield, A.
This species is classified as Vulnerable because of its very small population and range, which place it at risk from chance events and human impacts.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Ptilinopus chalcurus is endemic to Makatea in the Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia, where it was found to be common in 1972 and 1986-1987 (Thibault and Guyot 1987), and may now even be increasing slightly owing to the cessation of mining activities (P. Raust in litt. 2007). The population was broadly estimated at 250-999 individuals based on density estimates for congeners in 2004. A survey in 2009 estimated the total population size at 444-2,219 individuals, based on density estimates (Albar et al. 2009, 2010).

French Polynesia
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Albar et al. (2010) estimated the population to number 444-2,219 individuals in 2009. This is roughly equivalent to 290-1,500 mature individuals.
Population Trend: Stable

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It is found in all wooded habitats as well as dense forest in the south of the island, and is also present near villages (Holyoak and Thibault 1984). It probably takes fruit from a wide variety of trees (Holyoak and Thibault 1984).

Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Although much forest was destroyed during the period 1917-1964, as a result of phosphate mining, the indigenous vegetation has recovered over the last 40 years and it appears that the mining did not change either the distribution or abundance of the species (Holyoak and Thibault 1984, Seitre and Seitre 1991). However, Makatea is being considered for new mining activities, which may further affect the birds (Albar et al. 2010). There is no hunting or disturbance (given that the human population is low) (P. Raust in litt. 1999). Predation by introduced rats (particularly black rat Rattus rattus) may be a problem (Seitre and Seitre 1991) although the species has coexisted with rats for several decades (J.-C. Thibault in litt. 2000).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
Work was carried out in 2009 by Société d’Ornithologie de Polynésie Manu to determine the population size of the species through distance sampling (Albar et al. 2009, 2010).

Conservation Actions Proposed
Monitor the population. Assess the threat posed by introduced species. Consider captive breeding and translocation.

Citation: BirdLife International 2012. Ptilinopus chalcurus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <>. Downloaded on 30 March 2015.
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