Family Pigeons, Doves (Columbidae)

Least Concern

Pacific Imperial-pigeon (Ducula pacifica)


French: Carpophage pacifique German: Tongafruchttaube Spanish: Dúcula del Pacífico
Other common names: Pacific Pigeon

Columba pacifica

J. F. Gmelin

, 1789,



Sometimes considered to include D. aurorae as a subspecies; these two are close relatives, and related also to D. oceanica and perhaps D. galeata. Proposed races tarrali (Vanuatu), intensitincta (Fiji) and microcera (Samoa) all considered to represent individual variation, and synonymized with nominate. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • D. p. sejuncta Amadon, 1943 – Wuvulu I, Ninigo Is, Hermit Is and Kaniet Is (off W Bismarck Archipelago) and Schouten Is (off NE New Guinea).
  • D. p. pacifica (J. F. Gmelin, 1789) – Louisiade Achipelago, S Solomons (Ndai, Rennell) and nearby Sikaiana S to Santa Cruz Is, Vanuatu, Loyalty Is and New Caledonia, and E to Tuvalu, Phoenix Is, Tokelau, Fiji (smaller islands), Wallis and Futuna, Samoa, Tonga, Niue I and Cook Is.
  • Descriptive notes

    36–41 cm, 370–420 g. Head and neck light grey, breast grey with pinkish cast; back, tail and wings blackish green; wing-lining slate-grey; undertail-coverts... read more


    The advertising call is a five-note series ‘wooiip-pu pu po po’. Also produces four... read more


    On larger islands (e.g. in Samoa), found in montane rain forests up to at least 1000 m; on smaller... read more

    Food and feeding

    Amost entirely frugivorous, although young leaves and flowers are eaten on occasion. Studies on Tutuila (American Samoa) confirmed feeding... read more


    On Tutuila, nesting Jan–Sept, with most records from May–Aug. On 'Eua (S Tonga), recently fledged juveniles commonest in... read more


    Has been reported to move between islands seasonally to exploit fruit crops. Also found on small,... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). The global population is not known but it is described as common in Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, common to abundant in... read more

    Recommended citation

    Baptista, L.F., Trail, P.W., Horblit, H.M. & Garcia, E.F.J. (2020). Pacific Imperial-pigeon (Ducula pacifica). 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 21 January 2020).