Ecuadorian Tapaculo Scytalopus robbinsi


Taxonomic source(s)
del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A., Fishpool, L.D.C., Boesman, P. and Kirwan, G.M. 2016. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Volume 2: Passerines. Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, UK.
SACC. 2005 and updates. A classification of the bird species of South America. Available at: #http://www.museum.lsu.edu/~Remsen/SACCBaseline.htm#.

IUCN Red list criteria met and history
Red List criteria met
Critically Endangered Endangered Vulnerable
- C2a(i) B1ab(ii,iii,v); C2a(i)

Red List history
Year Category Criteria
2018 Endangered C2a(i)
2016 Endangered A2bc+3bc+4bc; B1ab(ii,iii,v)
2012 Endangered A2bc+3bc+4bc;B1ab(ii,iii,v)
2008 Endangered A2b,c; A3b,c; A4b,c; B1a+b(ii,iii)
2007 Endangered
2006 Not Evaluated
2004 Not Recognised
2000 Not Recognised
1994 Not Recognised
1988 Not Recognised
Species attributes

Migratory status not a migrant Forest dependency High
Land mass type Average mass -

Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 5,200 medium
Number of locations -
Severely Fragmented -
Population and trend
Value Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals 1900-5000 medium estimated 2016
Population trend Decreasing poor inferred -
Decline (3 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (5 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation future) 1-9 - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation past and future) 1-9 - - -
Number of subpopulations 2-100 - - -
Percentage in largest subpopulation 1-89 - - -

Population justification: Rare and local (Athanas and Greenfield 2016). This species occupies a similar range to El Oro Parakeet (Pyrrhura orcesi), the population of which has been estimated at 250 to 1,000 individuals in 2006. The Ecuadorian Tapaculo is more patchily distributed within this range. Analyses of density and habitat suitability covering 113 territories in the southern part of the species’s range suggest a total population of 3,220 mature individuals (range 1,894-4,598) (Hermes et al. 2018).

Trend justification: The population is considered to be in decline as habitat within the species's restricted range is lost and deteriorates. Deforestation at the species's stronghold in El Oro has been severe and it has become hard to find in the Buenaventura reserve, where it was reportedly common 12 years ago (L. Navarete in litt. 2006). In addition, upslope movement owing to climate change appears to be ongoing (Hermes et al. 2018). This upslope movement is projected to lead to a continued shrinkage of the distributional size (at least 25% shrinkage until 2050 under the RCP4.5 climate change scenario), with available habitat shrinking by at least 33% (M. Schaefer in litt. 2016).

Country/territory distribution
Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Resident Breeding Non-breeding Passage
Ecuador N Extant Yes

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name
Ecuador Bosque Protector Molleturo Mullopungo
Ecuador Daucay
Ecuador Reserva Buenaventura

Habitats & altitude
Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland major resident
Altitude 850 - 1500 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact
Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Agriculture & aquaculture Annual & perennial non-timber crops - Agro-industry farming Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Very Rapid Declines High Impact: 8
Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion
Agriculture & aquaculture Livestock farming & ranching - Agro-industry grazing, ranching or farming Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Very Rapid Declines High Impact: 8
Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion
Climate change & severe weather Habitat shifting & alteration Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Whole (>90%) Slow, Significant Declines Medium Impact: 7
Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Species factsheet: Scytalopus robbinsi. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 26/03/2023. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2023) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 26/03/2023.