|Scientific Name:||Falco araea|
|Species Authority:||(Oberholser, 1917)|
|Red List Category & Criteria:||Vulnerable B1ab(iii,v);C2a(i);D1 ver 3.1|
|Reviewer/s:||Butchart, S. & Taylor, J.|
|Contributor/s:||Doak, N., Lucking, R., Parr, S., Rocamora, G., Shah, N. & Skerrett, A.|
This species is listed as Vulnerable because it has a very small population and range and there have been recent declines in one subpopulation. It was far more widespread in the nineteenth century, with birds frequently seen on most islands. This range contraction may have resulted from widespread persecution in the past.
Falco araea is found on the granitic islands of the Seychelles, with a total of c.420-430 pairs in 2008, the majority on Mahé (plus a few on its satellite island, Watson 2000a, Pandolfi and Barilari 2009), 40-50 pairs on Silhouette, and a few pairs on Praslin and Ile du Nord. There are frequent records from La Digue but no recent evidence of breeding (N.J. Shah and S. Parr in litt. 1999, A. Skerrett in litt. 1999). At least one pair has also been heard on Félicité (Shah and Parr in prep.). Considerable development and habitat alteration have taken place on Mahé since 2002, suggesting that a population increase since then is unlikely, and that a decline could have occurred (N. Doak in litt. 2007). Genetic analysis suggests that the global population underwent a crash some time between 1940 and the early 1970s, and at one time numbered as few as eight (3.5-22) individuals, which is compatible with claims that there were fewer than 30 birds on Mahé during the 1960s (Groombridge et al. 2009).
|Range Map:||Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.|
|Population:||A combination of survey results and records (S. Parr in litt. 1999) can be used to deduce a total population of at least 800 individuals, roughly equivalent to 530 mature individuals.|
|Habitat and Ecology:||It inhabits native, evergreen, upland forests, but is now found in secondary rainforest and coconut plantations on Mahé. It hunts indigenous lizards (mainly geckos Phelsuma spp.) (G. Rocamora in litt. 2007), insects, small birds and mice (Watson 1981, Watson 1992). Nesting is predominantly on cliffs above 200 m, and less successfully - probably due to predation (Watson 1992) -at lower elevations on buildings, in holes in trees and in old Common Myna Acridotheres tristis nests (Loustau-Lalanne 1962). Small territories are occupied year-round, but only one brood is reared per year (Watson 2000a).|
|Major Threat(s):||Reduced numbers in the 1960s and 1970s may have been due to pesticide use or to peaks in commercial cinnamon cultivation and logging, which reduced upland forest to its lowest extent at this time (N.J. Shah and S. Parr in litt. 1999). Introduced nest predators, nest-site competitors and food competitors may be an ongoing threat (Loustau-Lalanne 1962, Watson 1992, A. Skerrett in litt. 1999). Housing development could be a threat (Rocamora 1997a), although the species breeds in urban areas (N.J. Shah and S. Parr in litt. 1999). Fires, and possibly housing developments and alien predators, have nearly halved its population on Praslin in 10 years (S. Parr in litt. 1999, Millett et al. 2003).|
Conservation Actions Underway
CITES Appendix I and II. The Morne Seychellois National Park on Mahé covers almost 25% of the island and provides a safe refuge (N.J. Shah and S. Parr in litt. 1999). The species was reintroduced to Praslin in 1977 (Watson 1981). Nature Seychelles is presently introducing predator-proof nest boxes on Praslin and initiating awareness campaigns through the Wildlife Clubs of Seychelles (Millett et al. 2003). Conservation Actions Proposed
Research factors influencing its density (N.J. Shah and S. Parr in litt. 1999) and population dynamics (Rocamora 1997a). Investigate the effect of urbanisation (Rocamora 1997a). Continue nest protection and awareness campaign on Praslin (Millett et al. 2003). Continue habitat protection on Mahé (Rocamora 1997a), possibly through extension of the Morne Seychellois National Park (G. Rocamora in litt. 1999). Control Barn Owls Tyto alba and rats around nesting sites on Praslin (Rocamora 1997a). Ensure no return to widespread pesticide use (N.J. Shah and S. Parr in litt. 1999). Assess translocation possibilities (R. Lucking in litt. 1999). Raise public awareness of the species's value, and the need to protect nest-sites in buildings; particularly on Praslin (Rocamora 1997a, N.J. Shah and S. Parr in litt. 1999, Millett et al. 2003). Resume long term monitoring (G. Rocamora in litt. 2007).
|Citation:||BirdLife International 2012. Falco araea. In: IUCN 2012. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 25 May 2013.|
|Feedback:||If you see any errors or have any questions or suggestions on what is shown on this page, please fill in the feedback form so that we can correct or extend the information provided|