Tribonyx mortierii


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Tribonyx mortierii
Species Authority: Du Bus, 1840
Common Name(s):
English Tasmanian Native-hen, Tasmanian Nativehen
Gallinula mortierii (Du Bus, 1840)
Tribonyx mortierii Christidis and Boles (2008)
Taxonomic Notes: Tribonyx mortierii (del Hoyo and Collar 2014) was previously placed in the genus Gallinula.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2012-05-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Butchart, S., Ekstrom, J., Fisher, S. & Harding, M.
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). The population trend is not known, but the population is not believed to be decreasing sufficiently rapidly to approach the thresholds 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). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species formerly occurred on mainland Australia but disappeared around 4,700 years ago, roughly coinciding with the arrival of the dingo Canis familiaris. It is now restricted to Tasmania, Australia, although the species was introduced to Maria Island, off east Tasmania, in 1969.
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The global population size has not been quantified, but is very numerous within its range and is regarded as an agricultural pest.
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The species is found in a variety of habitats from open pasture and crops to permanent and seasonal freshwater wetlands. It requires short-grazed pasture for foraging and is currently dependent on swards maintained by introduced species (sheep, cattle and rabbits); swards were formerly maintained by grazing marsupials and by fire. It always breeds near water, usually from August-November, and mostly feeds on seeds and leaves, varying with the availability of plant species. It is flightless, making it very vulnerable to introduced predators.
Systems: Terrestrial; Freshwater

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The recent spread of foxes (Vulpes) to Tasmania is of concern, and although they are still scarce it is likely that they will impact upon T. mortierii in the long term.

Citation: BirdLife International 2012. Tribonyx mortierii. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <>. Downloaded on 29 August 2015.
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