Oryzoborus maximiliani 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Passeriformes Emberizidae

Scientific Name: Oryzoborus maximiliani
Species Authority: Cabanis, 1851
Common Name(s):
English Great-billed Seed-finch, Great-billed Seed Finch, Great-billed Seed-Finch
Taxonomic Source(s): SACC. 2006. A classification of the bird species of South America. Available at: #

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable A2cd+3cd+4cd ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2015-10-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Symes, A.
Contributor(s): De Luca, A., Olmos, F., Rheindt, F., Salaman, P. & Costa, F.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Benstead, P., Bird, J., Butchart, S., Gilroy, J., Sharpe, C J, Taylor, J. & Ashpole, J
This species was uplisted from Near Threatened to Vulnerable in 2013 following evidence that it is declining rapidly, owing to intensive trapping and the loss and degradation of its habitats. If further evidence suggests that the decline is more rapid than currently thought, the species may qualify for uplisting again in the near future.

Previously published Red List assessments:
2013 Vulnerable (VU)
2012 Near Threatened (NT)
2008 Near Threatened (NT)
2004 Near Threatened (NT)
2000 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)
1994 Lower Risk/near threatened (LR/nt)
1988 Near Threatened (NT)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Oryzoborus maximiliani has a very disjunct range on the Pacific slope It if found in northern Bolivia (one locality), eastern Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, lower Amazonian Brazil and eastern and southern Brazil. It is very local and rare throughout its range (Restall et al. 2006), but can be common in suitable habitats, and has been noted to be fairly common in savannas near Trinidad in Beni department, Bolivia (F. Rheindt in litt. 2012).

Countries occurrence:
Bolivia, Plurinational States of; Brazil; French Guiana; Guyana; Suriname; Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO): Yes
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO): No
Estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2: 1530000
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO): Unknown
Extreme 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): 1100
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 and patchily distributed' (Stotz et al. 1996).

Trend Justification:  This species is suspected to be experiencing a rapid population decline, as it has become rare in many parts of its range and is known to suffer high levels of persecution for the cage-bird trade, as well as habitat loss and degradation.
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals: Unknown Continuing decline of mature individuals: Yes
Extreme fluctuations: No Population severely fragmented: No
Continuing decline in subpopulations: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations: No All individuals in one subpopulation: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is very local and patchily distributed. It occurs in riparian thickets, freshwater marshes and second-growth scrub to 1,100 m (Ridgely and Tudor 1989, Stotz et al. 1996). At least in Colombia, it can be locally very common, where it also frequents rice plantations (Hilty and Brown 1986). It has been noted to be fairly common in savanna habitat in Bolivia, including degraded areas by roads, as well as abandoned urban property (F. Rheindt in litt. 2012).

Systems: Terrestrial; Freshwater
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat: Yes
Generation Length (years): 3.8
Movement patterns: Not a Migrant

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The principal threat is the depletion of local populations by cage-bird trappers (Ridgely and Tudor 1989, Olmos 1993, Stotz et al. 1996), and this activity has caused it to vanish from most of its former range in Brazil. In fact, several long-term Brazilian ornithologists have failed to find this species in the wild since c. 2002, and its remaining wild population must be very small. The significant captive population in Brazil may be used for future reintroductions but the chances of that happening in the short-term are slim because the birds are very valuable, attaining high market prices. Habitat loss and degradation, as a result of conversion to agriculture and plantations, is also likely to contribute to declines.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
The species has been recorded in Emas National Park, Brazil (A. Monteiro per F. Olmos in litt. 2004, A. de Luca in litt. 2010).

Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct studies to determine the taxonomic status of the distinct subspecies. Repeat surveys of known sites to determine rates of population decline. Monitor the abundance of this species in the wild bird trade. Regulate the capture of the species as a cage-bird.

Citation: BirdLife International. 2015. Oryzoborus maximiliani. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T22723537A84684048. . Downloaded on 27 November 2015.
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