Gallinago macrodactyla 

Scope: Global
Language: English

Translate page into:

Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Charadriiformes Scolopacidae

Scientific Name: Gallinago macrodactyla Bonaparte, 1839
Common Name(s):
English Madagascar Snipe
French Bécassine malgache
Spanish Agachadiza Malgache
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.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable C2a(ii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2016-10-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Contributor(s): Hawkins, F., Rabenandrasana, M. & Safford, R.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Butchart, S., Calvert, R., Ekstrom, J., Evans, M., Khwaja, N., O'Brien, A., Shutes, S., Starkey, M., Symes, A., Taylor, J., Westrip, J.
This species is classified as Vulnerable as it is estimated to have a small population which is undergoing a continuing decline owing to wetland modification and hunting. Up-to-date data is urgently needed for this species, as the population estimate is now nearly a decade out of date. Should the population prove to be lower than currently thought, the species may warrant uplisting in the future.

Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Gallinago macrodactyla is found in the humid eastern half of Madagascar, from sea-level up to 2,700 m, being more common above 700 m (Langrand 1990, Morris and Hawkins 1998). It has been recorded from Tsaratanana in the north to Madena in the south-east, and from the eastern coast to the Sakay river on the western side of the central plateau (R. Safford in litt. 2009). It has also been recorded on Ile Sante Marie (R. Safford in litt. 2009). It is uncommon (Langrand 1990), but may be locally common at some sites (R. Safford in litt. 2009), and although the total population has been estimated at 1,800-7,500 individuals (F. Hawkins in litt. to Wetlands International 2002), the true population size is likely to be at the higher end of this estimate (R. Safford pers. comm. 2010).

Countries occurrence:
Additional data:
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO):NoEstimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:268000
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):2700
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The total population was previously estimated at 1,800-7,500 individuals (F. Hawkins in litt. 2002). However, the population size is likely to lie in the upper end of this estimate (R. Safford pers. comm. 2010), hence the population is best placed in the band 2,500-9,999 mature individuals. This equates to 3,750-14,999 individuals, rounded here to 3,500-15,000 individuals.

Trend Justification:  The population is suspected to be in decline owing to wetland modification and hunting pressures, though the rate of decline is unknown.

Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals:2500-9999Continuing decline of mature individuals:Yes
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:Behaviour This species is presumed to be sedentary, and breeding has been observed during the months of July-January (del Hoyo et al. 1996), with clutches of probably 2 eggs (Safford 2013). During the non-breeding season it is fairly gregarious and often observed foraging in small groups of 4-8 individuals (Langrand 1990). Habitat It inhabits dense vegetation and muddy areas, including grassy and sedge-covered marshes and swamps, muddy shores of lakes and watercourses, flooded fields and sometimes rice-paddies (Langrand 1990, del Hoyo et al. 1996). Breeding Breeding has been recorded in a grassy swamp with dry hummocks (Johnsgard 1981). Diet It feeds on invertebrates, seeds and plants (Langrand 1990). Breeding site The nest is placed in a dense tuft of grass in or adjacent to marshland (Langrand 1990). One nest has been described, and it consisted of a depression in a dry hummock, scantily lined with grass (Johnsgard 1981).

Systems:Terrestrial; Freshwater
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Unknown
Generation Length (years):4.8
Movement patterns:Not a Migrant
Congregatory:Congregatory (and dispersive)

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The species is threatened by the increasing conversion of wetland-edge habitat to rice cultivation (Langrand 1990). For example, at the largest block of suitable wetland habitat in Madagascar, Lake Alaotra, 250 km2 of the 350 km2 surrounding the lake are now under rice production (Edhem 1993, Pidgeon 1996). The species is also threatened by hunting (Langrand 1990).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
The Malagasy government has ratified the Ramsar Convention, which came into force for the country in 1999, and this may herald improved conservation measures for wetlands.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Obtain an up-to-date population estimate, and develop monitoring to establish population trends. Monitor rates of habitat loss. Study the impact of hunting on the species. Discourage and control hunting as appropriate. Protect important wetland sites.

Citation: BirdLife International. 2016. Gallinago macrodactyla. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T22693107A93384009. . Downloaded on 23 July 2018.
Disclaimer: To make use of this information, please check the <Terms of Use>.
Feedback: If you see any errors or have any questions or suggestions on what is shown on this page, please provide us with feedback so that we can correct or extend the information provided