starnoenas cyanocephala

February 2, 2017 - Blue-headed Quail-dove (Starnoenas cyanocephala)

Endemic to Cuba, these doves were once common, but are now found only in a few areas of the country. Foraging mostly in leaf litter, they eat seeds, berries, and small arthropods. They spend much of their time in pairs and only fly rarely to escape from predators or call from a low perch. Territorial during the breeding season, they defend an area around their nests, which are built on tree trunks near the ground from loose twigs and fresh leaves. Males mostly incubate the eggs during the day and females usually incubate them at night. They are classified as Endangered by the IUCN due to hunting and habitat destruction. Introduced predators, extreme weather, and climate change may be additional threats to their population.


Blue-headed Quail-Dove (Starnoenas cyanocephala)

…a unique species of dove found only on the island of Cuba. Like most doves the blue-headed quail-dove mates for life and is often found in a pair. They also forage almost exclusively on the ground, feeding on seeds, berries, snails and small insects. Blue-headed quail-doves spend almost their entire lives on the ground and rarely fly, only leaving the ground to escape predators or roost. Due to the degradation of its natural habitat of swamps and forests by habitat loss the blue-headed quail dove is currently listed as endangered.



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