Family Pigeons, Doves (Columbidae)

Near Threatened

Nicobar Pigeon (Caloenas nicobarica)


French: Nicobar à camail German: Kragentaube Spanish: Paloma de Nicobar

Columba nicobarica


, 1758,

Nicobar Islands


Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • C. n. nicobarica (Linnaeus, 1758) – Andaman and Nicobar Is, Mergui Archipelago, small islands off Malay Peninsula, Cambodia and S Vietnam S through Indonesia and Philippines to islands off New Guinea and Solomon Is.
  • C. n. pelewensis Finsch, 1875 – Palau Is.
  • Descriptive notes

    32–38 cm; male 460–525 g, female 490–600 g. Stocky and dark, with unique long fowl-like hackles on the neck and a very short all-white tail; head and hairy... read more


    Often silent, but for occasional harsh guttural croaks or barking sounds, rendered “ku-RRAU”, soft... read more


    Occurs only on small wooded (and often uninhabited) islands, typically off larger landmasses with... read more

    Food and feeding

    The feeding ecology of this species is focused on so-called pigeon islands: small, offshore islands where imperial pigeons flock in... read more


    Season apparently prolonged; on Tench I (Bismarck Archipelago), pairs gather to nest in Jun, with some birds remaining on nests until Jan;... read more


    Highly nomadic, with recent (Nov 2009) record, apparently pertaining to nominate race, from Pohnpei... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. CITES I. Currently considered Near Threatened. Formerly classed as a threatened species. Colonial nesting habits make species vulnerable to... read more

    Recommended citation

    Baptista, L.F., Trail, P.W., Horblit, H.M. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Nicobar Pigeon (Caloenas nicobarica). 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 23 January 2020).