Family Pigeons, Doves (Columbidae)


Sao Tome Olive-pigeon (Columba thomensis)


French: Pigeon de Sao Tomé German: Langschwanz-Oliventaube Spanish: Paloma de Santo Tomé
Other common names: Maroon Pigeon

Columba arquatrix var. thomensis


, 1888,

São Tomé


Closely related to C. arquatrix, C. sjostedti and C. pollenii, and all four are sometimes considered conspecific; Asiatic C. hodgsonii may also belong within this group. Monotypic.


São Tomé; formerly also on I das Rôlas, to S of main island.

Descriptive notes

37–40 cm; male 520–530 g, female 350 g. Entire head dark slate-grey; neck feathers lanceolate but less so than in C. arquatrix and C. sjostedti... read more


Advertising call a low-pitched faint cooing phrase repeated at long intervals, each consisting of a... read more


Primary and secondary rain forest from sea-level up to 2024 m; however, on eastern part of the... read more

Food and feeding

Known to take berries of Scheffleria mannii.


No information available.


No information available, but presumably sedentary.

Status and conservation

ENDANGERED. Formerly considered Vulnerable. Has undergone a serious decline in numbers within its extremely restricted range; now only reasonably common in a very limited... read more

Recommended citation

Baptista, L.F., Trail, P.W., Horblit, H.M., Boesman, P. & Garcia, E.F.J. (2020). Sao Tome Olive-pigeon (Columba thomensis). 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).