Nilgiri Wood-pigeon
Columba elphinstonii


This pigeon qualifies as Vulnerable owing to its small, declining population, a result of widespread destruction of its forest habitat.


Range Map for Nilgiri Wood-pigeon


Historically, it was hunted for food and sport, which probably contributed to its decline. Currently, the loss, degradation and increasing fragmentation of forest are a greater concern. In Maharashtra, forest cover is declining because of shifting cultivation and collection of timber for fuel and building. A massive 47% of evergreen/semi-evergreen forest was lost in the Kerala portion of the Western Ghats between 1961-1988, principally as a result of conversion to plantations, cash-crops, and clearance for human settlements and development projects. In certain portions of its range (e.g. Goa) hunting is considered a threat.


It is legally protected in India and occurs in at least 16 protected areas, most in Kerala, including three national parks, 10 wildlife sanctuaries, one tiger reserve and two reserve forests.


*Conduct research into seasonal movements and identify key sites. *Establish protected areas where necessary, ensure these sites are effectively safeguarded, and promote sustainable exploitation of forests throughout the Western Ghats. *Campaign for significant reductions in the conversion of natural forest to plantation. *Promote community-based conservation initiatives focusing on alternatives to deforestation and restoration of disturbed natural habitats within its range.

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