Rodrigues Night-heron Nycticorax megacephalus


Justification of Red List Category
This species was endemic to the island of Rodrigues, Mauritius, but is now Extinct having been last recorded in 1726, and mentioned as absent in 1761. Hunting was the cause of its extinction.

Population justification
No extant population remains.

Distribution and population

Nycticorax megacephalus is known from a number of bones (Cowles 1987), and from Leguat's 1708 and Tafforet's 1726 accounts, from Rodrigues, Mauritius. In 1761, Pingré specifically noted that there were no longer any butors on the island (Cheke 1987).


It is likely to have inhabited freshwater wetlands.


Leguat mentioned that they were easily caught (Hachisuka 1953), although they were not quite flightless (Cheke 1987). This hunting presumably caused their extinction.


Text account compilers
Brooks, T., Khwaja, N., Mahood, S.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2021) Species factsheet: Nycticorax megacephalus. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 06/03/2021. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2021) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 06/03/2021.