Accipiter poliogaster 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Accipitriformes Accipitridae

Scientific Name: Accipiter poliogaster
Species Authority: (Temminck, 1824)
Common Name(s):
English Grey-bellied Goshawk, Grey-bellied Hawk, Grey-bellied Goshawk
Spanish Azor Pechigrís, Azor Ventigrís, Esparvero Pechigrís, Gavilán Vientrigris
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. Lynx Edicions BirdLife International.
Identification information: Medium-sized forest accipiter. Dark grey and brown above, with a slight pale supraloral and white underparts, yellow legs and a barred grey and black tail. Young have a black crown, with chestnut malar patches and broken banding on underparts. Similar spp. Very similar to Slaty-backed Forest-falcon Micrastur mirandollei, but larger, with a shorter square tail. Hints Regularly soars over forest, with a cackling kek-kek-kek-kek-kek-kek call that trails off at the end.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2012-05-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Taylor, J.
Contributor(s): Lees, A.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Butchart, S., Ekstrom, J., Harding, M., Khwaja, N. & Symes, A.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2009 Least Concern (LC)
2008 Least Concern (LC)
2004 Least Concern (LC)
2000 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)
1994 Lower Risk/near threatened (LR/nt)
1988 Threatened (T)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Accipiter poliogaster ranges over much of South America, and has recently been recorded in Costa Rica for the first time (del Hoyo et al. 1994, A. Lees in litt. 2011). In northern South America, it is rare but widespread in Colombia, south Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana. In north-east Ecuador it is very rare (Restall et al. 2006) . From here its range spreads southwards through Brazil, east Peru, Bolivia and Paraguay. The species's distribution reaches northern Argentina, although there have been no recent records from the north-east (del Hoyo et al. 1994).
Countries occurrence:
Argentina; Bolivia, Plurinational States of; Brazil; Colombia; Ecuador; French Guiana; Guyana; Paraguay; Peru; Suriname; Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO): Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO): No
Estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2: 7340000
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): 500
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The population is estimated to number 1,000-10,000 individuals.

Trend Justification:  This species is suspected to lose 16.5-21.9% of suitable habitat within its distribution over three generations (22 years) based on a model of Amazonian deforestation (Soares-Filho et al. 2006, Bird et al. 2011). Given the susceptibility of the species to hunting and/or trapping and disturbance, and its patchy distribution and rarity (A. Lees in litt. 2011), it is suspected to decline by 25-30% over three generations.
Current Population Trend: Increasing
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals: Unknown
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 is a rainforest species, occurring in lowlands up to 500 m. It is also found in patches of riparian forest and other dense woodland. As a large bird it is thought to take sizeable prey, likely other birds (del Hoyo et al. 1994).
Systems: Terrestrial
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat: Unknown
Generation Length (years): 7.2
Movement patterns: Full Migrant

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

The primary threat to this species is accelerating deforestation in the Amazon Basin (Soares-Filho et al. 2006, Bird et al. 2011). Its patchy distribution also makes it susceptible to fragmentation and disturbance, and it may be hunted. However, it has been observed foraging in degraded habitat and clearly has at least some tolerance to deforestation (A. Lees in litt. 2011).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions:

Conservation Actions Underway
None is known.

Conservation Actions Proposed

Expand the protected area network to effectively protect IBAs. Effectively resource and manage existing and new protected areas, utilising emerging opportunities to finance protected area management with the joint aims of reducing carbon emissions and maximizing biodiversity conservation. Conservation on private lands, through expanding market pressures for sound land management and preventing forest clearance on lands unsuitable for agriculture, is also essential (Soares-Filho et al. 2006).

Classifications [top]

1. Forest -> 1.6. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland
suitability: Suitable season: breeding major importance:Yes
1. Forest -> 1.6. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland
suitability: Suitable season: non-breeding major importance:Yes
1. Land/water protection -> 1.1. Site/area protection
2. Land/water management -> 2.1. Site/area management
5. Law & policy -> 5.1. Legislation -> 5.1.2. National level
6. Livelihood, economic & other incentives -> 6.3. Market forces

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
  Action Recovery plan:No
  Systematic monitoring scheme:No
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Conservation sites identified:Yes, over entire range
  Occur in at least one PA:Yes
  Invasive species control or prevention:No
In-Place Species Management
  Successfully reintroduced or introduced beningly:No
  Subject to ex-situ conservation:No
In-Place Education
  Subject to recent education and awareness programmes:No
  Included in international legislation:Yes
  Subject to any international management/trade controls:Yes
2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.1. Annual & perennial non-timber crops -> 2.1.3. Agro-industry farming
♦ timing: Ongoing ♦ scope: Majority (50-90%) ♦ severity: Rapid Declines ⇒ Impact score: Medium Impact: 7 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.3. Livestock farming & ranching -> 2.3.3. Agro-industry grazing, ranching or farming
♦ timing: Ongoing ♦ scope: Majority (50-90%) ♦ severity: Rapid Declines ⇒ Impact score: Medium Impact: 7 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

♦  Pets/display animals, horticulture
 International : ✓ 

Bibliography [top]

Bird, J. P.; Buchanan, J. M.; Lees, A. C.; Clay, R. P.; Develey, P. F.; Yépez, I.; Butchart, S. H. M. 2011. Integrating spatially explicit habitat projections into extinction risk assessments: a reassessment of Amazonian avifauna incorporating projected deforestation. Diversity and Distributions: doi: 10.1111/j.1472-4642.2011.00843.x.

Butcher, G.S. and Niven, D.K. 2007. Combining data from the Christmas Bird Count and the Breeding Bird Survey to determine the continental status and trends of North American birds. National Audobon Society, New York, USA.

del Hoyo, J.; Elliott, A.; Sargatal, J. 1994. Handbook of the Birds of the World, vol. 2: New World Vultures to Guineafowl. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona, Spain.

IUCN. 2012. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2012.1). Available at: (Accessed: 19 June 2012).

Restall, R.; Rodner, C.; Lentino, M. 2006. Birds of northern South America: an identification guide. Volume 1: species accounts. Christopher Helm, London.

Soares-Filho, B.S.; Nepstad, D.C.; Curran, L.M.; Cerqueira, G.C.; Garcia, R. A.; Ramos, C. A.; Voll, E.; McDonald, A.; Lefebvre, P.; Schlesinger, P. 2006. Modelling conservation in the Amazon basin. Nature 440(7083): 520-523.

Citation: BirdLife International. 2012. Accipiter poliogaster. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2012: e.T22695453A40371010. . Downloaded on 27 November 2015.
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