Biak Scrubfowl (Megapodius geelvinkianus): Revise global status?

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2 Responses to Biak Scrubfowl (Megapodius geelvinkianus): Revise global status?

  1. The species has seen a noticeable decline in the population size on Biak island. It is an elusive shy species but still, it has become a rarely seen or recorded species by birdwatchers and visitors to this island.
    The biggest population remains on the North of the island and on the Supiori side where there is still good forest left.
    The species is losing ground not so much to trapping for the illegal trade but as a food source for the locals. Nylon straps have been found few times on the forest floor and were destroyed.
    The human population on Biak island has seen a dramatic increase thus more forest ground has been lost to clearings to create gardens and small farms. This trend will undoubtedly continue and at a rapid pace.
    The status of the species should be revised and reassessed.

  2. Robert Davis says:

    In our review of the conservation status and climate impacts on megapodes, this species was ranked 11th for vulnerability to climate change. We also noted it received the maximum possible points for rarity alongside the Tanimbar Megapode and Waigeo Brush-turkey due to be range-restricted. We highlighted it as amongst the most poorly known for nesting biology and general ecology. This combined with the likely pressure from hunting combined with ongoing forest loss and degradation would seem to not justify a downlisting at this stage.

    Radley, P., Davis, R.A., Dekker, R., Molloy, S.W., Blake, D. and Heinsohn, R. (2018). Vulnerability of megapodes (Megapodiidae; Aves) to climate change and related threats. Environmental Conservation. 45 (4): 396-406.

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