Atoll Fruit-dove Ptilinopus coralensis


Justification of Red List Category
This species is likely to be declining moderately rapidly throughout its very fragmented range as a result of hunting, introduced predators and habitat degradation. It therefore is classified as Near Threatened.

Population justification
The global population size has not been quantified, but the species is described as abundant in some areas and scarce in others (Gibbs et al. 2001).

Trend justification
The threats known to be operating on the species are suspected to be causing a slow to moderate decline.

Distribution and population

Ptilinopus coralensis is widespread throughout the islands of the Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia. It is likely to occur at low densities throughout its range as its preferred food resources are scarce (J.-C. Thibault in litt. 2000). In a recent survey it was found to be uncommon on five out of eight islands visited, but others have found it to be abundant on some atolls which have remained free from the ravages of introduced predators (Blainvillain et al. 1999, Blainvillain et al. submitted).


It is the only fruit-dove in the tropical Pacific adapted exclusively to low coral atolls, where it inhabits forest and abandoned coconut plantations, feeding on insects and seeds, usually on the ground (Holyoak and Thibault 1984, Pratt et al. 1987).


Predation by introduced rats (particularly black rat Rattus rattus) is a threat on a small number of atolls (Seitre and Seitre 1991) and the species is vulnerable to habitat destruction including the exploitation of coconut plantations (Blainvillain et al. 1999). The species is also reported to be rather tame, and is rare on inhabited islands, so hunting may also be a threat.

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
In 2009 and early 2010, the species was surveyed on Niau (G. Albar et al. 2010). Quantitative observations are expected to be published in 2011.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Carry out surveys to assess the species's population size. Monitor population trends through regular surveys. Monitor rates of habitat destruction. Monitor levels of hunting pressure. Take measures to prevent the introduction of black rats to atolls inhabited by the species. Control hunting of this, and other Columbids throughout its range. Prevent habitat destruction on atolls.


Text account compilers
Derhé, M., Mahood, S., O'Brien, A., Shutes, S.

Thibault, J., Albar, G.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2021) Species factsheet: Ptilinopus coralensis. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 08/12/2021. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2021) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 08/12/2021.