Colymbus caspicus andinus
Meye de Schauensee, 1959,
Lake Tota, 3015 m, Boyacá, Colombia.
Has often been considered a subspecies of P. nigricollis. Monotypic.
Bogotá wetlands, at c. 2600 m in E Andes of Colombia (Boyacá and Cundinamarca); latterly confined to L Tota (Boyacá).
Known from 18 or 19 specimens collected between 1939 and 1964#R. Last recorded in 1977; intensive fieldwork in 1981 and 1982 failed to find this species, which is now considered extinct. Possible causes of population crash include drainage of wetlands, introduction of predatory fish (in 1944, in L Tota), pesticide pollution of water, reed-harvesting, and hunting; increased influx of agricultural fertilizer led to huge reduction in macrophyte growth, and reduction of vegetation around lake may have been significant if the species fed mainly by gleaning from foliage. Loss of suitable habitat owing to artificial lowering of water level in mid-1950s probably resulted in marked decline in numbers, making the species far more vulnerable to other negative factors.
Food and feeding
Status and conservation
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