Family Pigeons, Doves (Columbidae)

Least Concern

Green-naped Pheasant-pigeon (Otidiphaps nobilis)


French: Otidiphaps à cou vert German: Grünnacken-Fasantaube Spanish: Paloma faisán cuelliverde
Other common names: Green-collared Pheasant-pigeon, Pheasant Pigeon (when lumped with O. aruensis, O. cervicalis and O. insularis)

Otidiphaps nobilis


, 1870,

“Probably procured on some one of the islands of the Eastern Archipelago or in New Guinea”


Affinities uncertain. Hitherto considered the nominate race of a species consisting of four distinctive races, but here each is treated as a full species, with the following diagnoses. The form aruensis (Aru Is) differs from nobilis in its white vs glossy amethyst/greenish hindneck (3); much less coppery nuchal area to mantle (2); greenish-blue vs purplish-blue breast (2); slightly paler, less maroon-tinged mantle (ns[1]); and shorter, virtually undetectable crest (1, scored as a mensural character, not plumage character). The form cervicalis (SE New Guinea) differs from nobilis in its greyish-white vs glossy amethyst/greenish hindneck (3); brownish vs coppery nuchal area to mantle (2); dark turquoise-green vs purplish-russet to deep blue lower back to uppertail-coverts (3); and blackish-green vs black-blue underparts (ns[1]). It differs from aruensis in its much smaller and greyish-white vs pure white and more extensive (to mantle) hindneck (3); dark turquoise-green vs purplish-russet to deep blue lower back to uppertail-coverts (3); blackish-green vs black-blue lower underparts (1); and slightly darker, more maroon-tinged back and wings (as in nobilis), aruensis lacking the maroon, being a shade more rufous (ns[1]). The form insularis (Fergusson I) differs from all other taxa in Otidiphaps in possessing no backward-directed crest (2); no coloured nuchal patch (simply blackish) (3); wings markedly paler rufous than in other taxa (ns[1]); rump dull green (strong green in cervicalis, dark blue in others), uppertail-coverts and tail dark blue (strong green in cervicalis, dark blue in others) (ns[1]); underparts dull matt black, with virtual absence except slightly on breast of the glossy blue or green that is extensive on other taxa (2). Monotypic.

What do (1) and (2) mean? Learn more about the scoring system.

Batanta, Waigeo and Yapen#R, and mountains of W New Guinea (Arfak, Wandammen, Weyland, Snow, and mountains on upper Mamberamo R).

Descriptive notes

42–50 cm; 500 g. The four pheasant-pigeons Otidiphaps spp. are unique amongst pigeons in having a laterally compressed pheasant-like tail of 20–22... read more


Advertising call is loud, far-carrying “wu-huwoooaaa” that rises and falls in pitch, and trails off... read more


Primarily hilly and lower montane areas up to 1900 m, but also in lowlands (e.g. at 100 m on Onin... read more

Food and feeding

Seeds and fallen fruit, sometimes visiting display grounds of Wilson’s Bird-of-Paradise (Cicinnurus respublica) in search of... read more


No specific information. Presumably nests on ground and lays only a single egg, as does O. cervicalis.


Resident and sedentary.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Perhaps locally common but scarce or rare in most of large range (c. 260,000 km²) there is evidence to suggest that species has locally become... read more

Recommended citation

Baptista, L.F., Trail, P.W., Horblit, H.M., Kirwan, G.M. & Garcia, E.F.J. (2020). Green-naped Pheasant-pigeon (Otidiphaps nobilis). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 9 April 2020).