Knipolegus franciscanus


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Knipolegus franciscanus
Species Authority: Snethlage, 1928
Common Name(s):
English Brazilian Black-tyrant, Caatinga Black Tyrant
Taxonomic Notes: Knipolegus aterrimus (Sibley and Monroe 1990, 1993) has been split into K. aterrimus and K. franciscanus following Stotz et al. (1996), contra SACC (2005), pending the outcome of investigation into the taxonomy of this form by SACC.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2013-11-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S.
Contributor(s): Dornas, T. & Olmos, F.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Butchart, S., Ekstrom, J., Harding, M., Sharpe, C J, Symes, A. & Taylor, J.
This species has been downlisted from Near Threatened because its range is estimated to be larger than previously thought. It is listed as being of Least Concern on the basis that it does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under any of the criteria.

2012 Near Threatened

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Knipolegus franciscanus occurs in Brazil, where it is known from ten localities: Vale do Rio Palmeiras in Tocantins (Pacheco and Olmos 2006); Pirapora, Januária, Itacarambi, Manga and Montalvânia in Minas Gerais; Iaciara, Serra Geral (untraced) and Nova Roma (Olmos et al. 1997; F. Olmos in litt. 2004) in Goiás; and São Tomé near Campo Formoso and near São Félix do Coribe (F. Olmos and R. Silva e Silva pers. obs. 2003) in Bahia (Lima 1999). Marini et al. (2010) estimate the species's Extent of Occurrence to be c.606,100 km2.

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

Population [top]

Population: The global population size has not been quantified, but this species is described as 'uncommon' (Stotz et al. 1996).
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: All localities, except São Tomé, are in dry forest patches associated with limestone outcrops of the Bambuí formation. Although the species is associated with rocky outcrops, seasonal movements to forest areas have been noticed (J. F. Pacheco per F. Olmos in litt. 2004).

Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Limestone-derived soils are the most fertile in the region, so clearance (including state-sponsored projects in Bahia) for pasture and irrigated cultures has been widespread. The destruction of dry forest has been extensive since the early 1960s (T. Dornas in litt. 2013). Around São Felix do Coribe in western Bahia, remaining dry forest patches are very small (all areas less than 200 ha) and this is the case throughout the limestone region. Remaining forest is exploited for timber, mostly for fence poles (Olmos et al. 1997). Satellite imagery from the Paranã valley in Goiás has shown that dry forests declined from 15.8% of the region in 1990 to only 5.4% in 1999, and less than 1% of the remaining fragments are over 100 ha, although they make up 48% of the remaining forest (Andahur 2001). Most of the remaining forest is associated with rocky outcrops where cultivation or pastures are not viable, and vegetation composition there differs to that of forest on flatter ground. There are intentions by mining companies to explore the potential extraction of agricultural products from limestone outcrops in the future (T. Dornas in litt. 2013).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
The only protected area harbouring dry forests where the species may occur is Terra Ronca State Park, Goiás.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Monitor population trends through regular surveys. Increase the area of suitable habitat that has protected status. Track the potential threat to limestone outcrops from mining companies and lobby for legislation if required.

Citation: BirdLife International 2013. Knipolegus franciscanus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <>. Downloaded on 28 August 2015.
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