Guayaquil Woodpecker Campephilus gayaquilensis


Justification of Red List Category
This species is classified as Near Threatened because it is suspected to be declining moderately rapidly owing to habitat loss.

Population justification
The global population size has not been quantified, but this species is described as 'fairly common' (Stotz et al. (1996).

Trend justification
A moderately rapid and on-going population decline is suspected owing to habitat loss.

Distribution and population

Campephilus gayaquilensis is restricted to the west slope of the Andes and adjacent lowlands, from south-west Colombia (Cauca) through west Ecuador to north-west Peru (south to Cajamarca) (Winkler et al. 1995). It is locally relatively common, but appears uncommon to rare over much of its range (Parker and Carr 1992, Pople et al. 1997, Jiggins et al. 1999, Clements and Shany 2001), with populations becoming highly fragmented owing to habitat destruction.


It inhabits dry deciduous and humid forests, as well as tall second growth and mangroves (Hilty and Brown 1986), from sea-level to 800 m, occasionally higher in the south (Winkler et al. 1995), with records to 1,800 m (Jiggins et al. 1999).


Forest in this region is being cleared for agriculture, and goats and cattle graze the understorey of much of the remaining forest, preventing regeneration. Most remaining forest in the region is highly fragmented, and it seems unlikely that small areas (e.g. Jauneche Biological Reserve Station in Ecuador) can support viable populations of this species, which occurs naturally at low densities (Parker and Carr 1992). It appears inevitable that such populations will ultimately become extinct (Parker and Carr 1992).

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
In Ecuador populations occur in Machalilla National Park, Tinalandia Natural Reserve and Cerro Blanco Protected Forest. It is present in Tumbes Natural Reserve and Cerros de Amotape National Park, Peru.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Effectively protect and manage protected areas where the species occurs. Study its ecology and the ability of small populations to persist in degraded habitats and small, fragmented patches.


Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Isherwood, I., Sharpe, C J, Symes, A.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2021) Species factsheet: Campephilus gayaquilensis. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 21/10/2021. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2021) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 21/10/2021.