Tooth-billed Pigeon
Didunculus strigirostris

This secretive species qualifies as Endangered because it has a very small, fragmented range and population which are declining as the extent and quality of its forest habitat diminishes. Furthermore, it has suffered a drastic decline, probably losing more than 50% of its population over the last decade, owing to the effects of severe cyclones.


Range Map for Tooth-billed Pigeon

It is threatened by deforestation for agriculture particularly combined with the severe effects of cyclones, e.g. in 1990 and 1991, when canopy cover was reduced from 100% to 27%8. Forest quality is further reduced by the invasive of highly aggressive non-native trees whose spread is aided by hurricanes10. Hunting is also a further threat, e.g. in 1985, 400 birds were being shot every year5. Although hunting is now illegal, birds are still shot in the seasonal harvest of unprotected pigeon species7.

It is fully protected by law and hunting is banned. It occurs in some proposed and a few existing protected areas, but these have suffered cyclone damage and the O Le Pupu Pu`e National Park on `Upolu is threatened by logging and cattle-farming5. It has recently been chosen as a flagship species to promote conservation awareness.

*Extend the hunting ban to cover all native columbids to avoid
shooting6. *Conduct further surveys to determine its distribution and population numbers6,9,11. *Gather further information on its life-history and habitat requirements6,9,11. *Investigate threats9,11. *Identify important sites, set up a network of long-term monitoring stations, and establish conservation areas/nature reserves, e.g. on the four small islands off the east coast of `Upolu including Nu`utele (Aleipata)6,9,11. *Increase local involvement in its study and conservation9,11.

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