Family Pigeons, Doves (Columbidae)

Least Concern

Pale-vented Pigeon (Patagioenas cayennensis)


French: Pigeon rousset German: Rotrückentaube Spanish: Paloma colorada
Other common names: Cayenne Pigeon

Columba cayennensis


, 1792,

French Guiana


Has no obvious close relatives; one proposal is that it may be intermediate in some respects between the P. fasciata and P. flavirostris groups. Subspecific distribution in Venezuela unclear, and races andersoni and tobagensis sometimes rejected (claimed differences may be inconstant), with W populations being ascribed to pallidicrissa and E ones to cayennensis#R; birds of N Venezuela sometimes separated as race obsoleta. Species formerly listed as Columba rufina. Seven subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • P. c. pallidicrissa (C. Chubb, 1910) – S Mexico (Chiapas and Veracruz) S to N Colombia.
  • P. c. occidentalis (Stolzmann, 1926) – W Colombia and W Ecuador.
  • P. c. tamboensis (Conover, 1938) – WC Colombia (Cauca and upper Patía Valleys#R).
  • P. c. andersoni (Cory, 1915) – SE Colombia and E Ecuador E across Venezuela and Brazil N of Amazon to Pará.
  • P. c. tobagensis (Cory, 1915) – Trinidad and Tobago.
  • P. c. cayennensis (Bonnaterre, 1792) – Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana.
  • P. c. sylvestris (Vieillot, 1818) – E Peru and Brazil S of Amazon to Paraguay and N Argentina.
  • Descriptive notes

    25·5–26·5 cm; 167–262 g. Most of throat greyish white shading into grey on face and lower throat; hindcrown and nape iridescent green, bronze or... read more


    Song is a rhythmic series of rather high-pitched coos, typically starting with a single note... read more


    Inhabits humid forest edge, and marshy savanna with scattered forest patches; tends to avoid closed... read more

    Food and feeding

    Small fruits, berries and seeds of Brysonima, Solanum and Miconia form part of diet; in Costa Rica known to feed... read more


    Season Feb–Jun in Costa Rica; Feb–May on Trinidad; recorded in Mar, May, Jun and Nov on Tobago. Nest of twigs is placed 1... read more


    No evidence of migration. Flocks of 12 or more birds have been encountered after the breeding... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Fairly common to common in S Mexico, Guatemala, Belize and Honduras, and also in Colombia; commonest large pigeon throughout hot lowlands of Brazil.... read more

    Recommended citation

    Baptista, L.F., Trail, P.W., Horblit, H.M. & Boesman, P. (2020). Pale-vented Pigeon (Patagioenas cayennensis). 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 February 2020).