Family Pigeons, Doves (Columbidae)

Endangered

Polynesian Imperial-pigeon (Ducula aurorae)


Taxonomy

French: Carpophage de la Société German: Aurorafruchttaube Spanish: Dúcula de Makatea
Other common names: Tahitian Pigeon
Taxonomy:

Carpophaga auroræ

Peale

, 1848,

Makatea (formerly Aurora Island), Tuamotu Archipelago

.

Closely related to D. pacifica, of which sometimes considered a subspecies; these two are closely related also to D. oceanica and perhaps D. galeata. Races differ little, apparently only in number of tail feathers, and the species is sometimes treated as monotypic#R. Two subspecies tentatively recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • D. a. aurorae (Peale, 1848) – Makatea (Tuamotu Archipelago).
  • D. a. wilkesii (Peale, 1848) – Tahiti (Society Is). May already be extinct.
  • Descriptive notes

    51 cm. Large, long-tailed pigeon with dark iridescent green and blue back, wings and tail; head, neck and underparts pale silvery grey; undertail-coverts greyish, sometimes... read more

    Voice

    Poorly documented. Only available recording (from Makatea) illustrates presumed advertising call, a... read more

    Habitat

    Dense forests.

    Food and feeding

    Frugivorous; feeds on a variety of native and introduced fruits, including guava, wild plantains, figs, Terminalia (Combretaceae... read more

    Breeding

    No information available.

    Movements

    No information. Flight slow, with deep wingbeats.

    Status and conservation

    ENDANGERED. Previously listed as Vulnerable. Very rare, and possibly even extinct on Tahiti, where endemic race wilkesii may survive only in the Papenoo and Hitiaa... read more

    Recommended citation

    Baptista, L.F., Trail, P.W., Horblit, H.M. & Boesman, P. (2018). Polynesian Imperial-pigeon (Ducula aurorae). 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 https://www.hbw.com/node/54374 on 20 October 2018).