This discussion was first published as part of the 2016 Red List update. At the time a decision regarding its status was pended, but to enable potential reassessment of this species as part of the 2017 Red List update this post remained open and the date of posting was updated.
BirdLife species factsheet for Grey-breasted Parakeet
Grey-breasted Parakeet is known historically from 15 locations in Brazil (Anon. 2014). It now only occurs in three areas in Ceará state: the Serra do Baturité, Quixadá (C. Albano in litt. 2006, Waugh et al. 2010) and most recently from a rocky mountainside in Ceará where five birds were recorded in March 2014 (Anon. 2014). The species is listed as Critically Endangered under C2a(ii). The population at the Baturité Mountains Environmental Protection Area is estimated to be c. 250 birds, and the discovery in 2010 of a population of c. 50 birds in Quixadá raises the known global population to c. 300 birds (Waugh et al. 2010). This roughly equates to 200 mature individuals. The population is suspected to be declining rapidly owing to heavy trapping and ongoing habitat loss within its range.
The species occurs in montane (above 500 m) humid forest enclaves in the otherwise semi-arid north-east Brazil. Habitat destruction has played a role in the species’s decline with original forest cover now reduced to just 13%. The principal threat, however, is believed to come from ongoing trapping for illegal local and national trade (C. Albano in litt. 2006, Anon. 2009) and captive-breeding (Fernandes-Ferreira et al. 2012). The species occurs in the international cage bird trade.
In the Brazilian Red List assessment for birds (MMA 2014) this species is listed as Endangered under B1ab (i,ii,iii,iv,v). The assessment provided an estimated Extent of Occurrence (EOO) of 660 km2 and the population was estimated to be severely fragmented and undergoing a continuing decline in EOO, Area of Occupancy, habitat quality, number of subpopulations and mature individuals. The species’s assessment on the Brazilian Red List can be accessed here. The species was previously considered Critically Endangered under B1ab(i) on the Brazilian Red List (Machado et al. 2008).
For the species to no longer be considered Critically Endangered under C2a(ii) either the population would need to be greater than 250 mature individuals, the population would need to no longer be in continuing decline, or the largest subpopulation would need to comprise fewer than 90-100% of mature individuals.
Up-to-date information is requested on the species. Is the population now >250 mature individuals? Are 90-100% of mature individuals found in one subpopulation? Should information be provided to show that the population is now >250 mature individuals then the species would warrant downlisting to Endangered under C2a(ii), in addition to B1ab(i,ii,iii,iv,v) and C2a(i) (should the number of mature individuals in each subpopulation be <250).
Comments on the proposed downlisting are welcome.
Anon. 2009. The Grey-breasted Parakeet: flagship for a unique forest. Cyanopsitta: 18-20.
Anon. 2014. New population of critically endangered parakeet found in north-east Brazil. World Birdwatch 36(3): 9.
Fernandes-Ferreira, H., Mendonça, S.V., Albano, C., Ferreira, F.S. and Alves, R.R.N. 2012. Hunting, use and conservation of birds in Northeast Brazil. Biodiversity and Conservation 21(1): 221-244.
Machado, A.B.M., Drummond, G.M. and Paglia, A.P. (2008) Livro Vermelho da Fauna Brasileira Ameaçada de Extinção – Volume 1. Biodiversidade 19. Brasiliera, DF.
MMA (2014) Lista Nacional Oficial de Espécies da Fauna Ameaçadas de Extinção. Portaria No 444, de 17 de dezembro de 2014. Diário Oficial da União – Seção 1. Nº 245, quinta-feira, 18 de dezembro de 2014.
Waugh, D; Girao, W.; Albano, C.; Campos, A. 2010. A double boost for the Grey-breasted Parakeet. Cyanopsitta: 19-20.