Archived 2012-2013 topics: Green-capped Tanager (Tangara meyerdeschauenseei): downlist to Near Threatened?

BirdLife species factsheet for Green-capped Tanager Green-capped Tanager Tangara meyerdeschauenseei is described as relatively common at three sites in the arid area at the headwaters of the río Inambari in Puno, south-east Peru.  It is currently listed as Vulnerable under criterion D2 because it was thought to have a very small range, found in fewer than 6 locations. However, recent fieldwork reported that this species is also found in the Apolo area of northwestern Bolivia (Berg and Van Kleunen in litt. 2012). The majority of observations were made in dry, open scrubland and forest borders with an elevation of 1450-1700m, typical of Bolivian Andean Cerrado (Berg and Van Kleunen in litt. 2012), but one observation of this species was also made in humid Yungas forest close to Santa Cruz de Valle Ameno, Madidi National Park.  This species was previously reported in this humid forest habitat at Tokoaque, Madidi National Park, in 2001 (Hennessey and Gomez 2003), but the presence of a population here was treated as unconfirmed.   If this information is confirmed, and the Green-capped Tanager does also occur in Bolivia in a wider range of habitats than first thought, the population size and range of this species may be higher than previously believed (Berg and Van Kleunen in litt. 2012) and this species may no longer qualify as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List. If it is not restricted to fewer than 6 locations, and its population is not continuing to decline, it would warrant downlisting to Near Threatened, approaching criterion D2 on the IUCN Red List, or possibly even Least Concern. Information is requested on this species’s likely population size, trends and distribution. Further information regarding its tolerance of habitat disturbance and habitat requirements is particularly welcome. Reference: Hennessey, A. B. and Gomez, M. I. (2003) Four bird species new to Bolivia: an ornithological survey of the Yungas site Tokoaque, Madidi National Park. Cotinga 19: 25-33.

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2 Responses to Archived 2012-2013 topics: Green-capped Tanager (Tangara meyerdeschauenseei): downlist to Near Threatened?

  1. Daniel Lane says:

    I cannot comment on the species’ Bolivian status (I was just in Apolo, but failed to see the bird there), but certainly within Puno, Peru, the species seems to be increasing thanks to land-clearance and agricultural practices. the recent BBOC paper by Robbins et al (2013) on birds of Abra de Maruncunca, suggests that the species has expanded because of human activity in the area. I think that it’s conservation status can be downgraded without any problem.

  2. Sebastian K. Herzog says:

    In early March 2012, Quillen Vidoz and I also found the species WNW of Apolo, in the area between Mojos and Virgen del Rosario (Tuichi). It also occurred in Andean cerrado-like grassland, which is largely anthropogenic in origin, maintained by cattle grazing and fire. There are remnant humid forest patches and forested ravines, so the species can occasionally be found at forest edge, but its core habitat certainly seems to be open scrub and wooded grassland. In addition, the species seems to be pretty mobile and individuals appear to have quite large home ranges, so dispersing birds may occasionally cross forested areas. In 2011 Quillen also obtained breeding evidence in the Apolo area. So overall, I think downgrading is justified.

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