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Status, distribution and recommendations for monitoring of the Seychelles black parrot Coracopsis (nigra) barklyi

  • A. Reuleaux (a1), N. Bunbury (a1), P. Villard (a1) and M. Waltert (a2)
Abstract

The Seychelles black parrot Coracopsis (nigra) barklyi, endemic to the Seychelles islands, is the only surviving parrot on the archipelago. Although originally classified as a subspecies of the lesser vasa parrot Coracopsis nigra evidence now indicates that the Seychelles population may be a distinct species, in which case its conservation status also requires reassessment. Here, we address the status of the C. (n.) barklyi population on the islands of its current and likely historical range, Praslin and Curieuse, assess the effect of habitat type on relative abundance, and identify the most appropriate point count duration for monitoring the population. We conducted point count distance sampling at 268 locations using habitat type as a covariate in the modelling of the detection function. Density on Praslin was estimated to be 0.14–0.24 individuals per ha, resulting in an estimate of a total of 520–900 individuals (95% confidence interval). The highest densities occurred in endemic palm and mixed forests. Habitats with a high proportion of palms were more likely to support parrots than habitats without palms. As no parrots were detected on Curieuse the number estimated on Praslin is the global wild population. The small size of this population necessitates its categorization as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List. Our main recommendation for the conservation of C. (n.) barklyi, in addition to continued monitoring, is the preservation and expansion of the parrot's endemic palm forest habitat.

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      Status, distribution and recommendations for monitoring of the Seychelles black parrot Coracopsis (nigra) barklyi
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      Status, distribution and recommendations for monitoring of the Seychelles black parrot Coracopsis (nigra) barklyi
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Corresponding author
(Corresponding author) E-mail nancy@sif.sc
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Oryx
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