Phaethornis aethopygus


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Phaethornis aethopygus
Species Authority: Zimmer, 1950
Common Name(s):
English Tapajos Hermit, Tapajós Hermit
Phaethornis aethopyga
Phaethornis longuemareus Stotz et al. (1996)
Phaethornis longuemareus BirdLife International (2004, 2008)
Phaethornis longuemareus Sibley and Monroe (1990, 1993)
Taxonomic Notes: Phaethornis aethopygus (del Hoyo and Collar 2014) was previously listed as P. aethopyga.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2014
Date Assessed: 2012-06-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S.
Contributor(s): Lees, A. & Olmos, F.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Sharpe, C J, Taylor, J. & Symes, A.
This newly recognised species is listed as Near Threatened because ongoing deforestation in its range is suspected to be driving at least a moderately rapid population decline. Further research is needed to improve our knowledge of this poorly-known species.

2012 Near Threatened

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Phaethornis aethopygus is recognised as a valid species following a study into aspects of the population's plumage, distribution and behaviour that found strong evidence against its treatment as a hybrid (Piacentini et al. 2009). This species is endemic to Brazil, known only from the vicinity of the Teles Pires, Tapajós and Xingu rivers, south of the Amazon (Piacentini et al. 2009).

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

Population [top]

Population: The population size of this species has not been directly estimated and further research is required. It was described as common to fairly common when considered conspecific with P. longuemareus.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The species is mostly restricted to primary forest, although tolerant of areas being logged or affected by one fire event (A. Lees in litt. 2011), with one lek observed in heavily disturbed terra firme forest (Piacentini et al. 2009). It is nectivorous and, like other hummingbirds, probably supplements this diet with invertebrates such as flying insects and spiders.

Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Within the species's range, habitat destruction and fragmentation as a result of conversion to pasture, road construction and subsequent development and settlement, accompanied by illegal logging, are significant threats, with the Novo Progresso area currently experiencing one of the highest rates of deforestation in the Amazon (F. Olmos in litt. 2007). Current plans to pave the BR 163 Cuiabá-Santarém road are expected to bring even greater habitat destruction, opening up soya markets in the Mato Grosso for rapid transfer to Santarém, unless strong government action is taken (A. Lees in litt. 2007). Observations of P. aethopyga in disturbed habitats (Piacentini et al. 2009, A. Lees in litt. 2011) suggests that, like many hummingbird species, it tolerates some level of habitat degradation; however, forest fragmentation may lead to the loss of lekking sites, and outright forest clearance is assumed to be catastrophic.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
Some areas of forest in its range are afforded protection in designated sites such as Floresta Nacional de Altamira and Jamanxin National Park (Piacentini et al. 2009). No other targeted actions are known for this species.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Carry out surveys to obtain a population estimate and improved knowledge of the species's distribution. Monitor population trends. Monitor the extent and condition of habitat in its range. Increase the area of forest in the Teles Pires, Tapajós and Xingu watersheds that is protected.

Citation: BirdLife International 2014. Phaethornis aethopygus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <>. Downloaded on 30 August 2015.
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