Saw-billed Hermit Ramphodon naevius


Justification of Red List Category
This species has a very large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km² or Area of Occupancy <2,000 km² combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population size is not known, but is suspected to be very large, and hence is unlikely to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). Despite the fact that the population trend is suspected to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.

Population justification
The species is described as common in lowland forest, and less common at higher altitudes (Aleixo and Galetti 1997; Goerck 1999). It was extremely common in patches of Atlantic forest in São Paulo and Parana (Aleixo and Galetti 1997). Surveys on Ilha do Cardoso, São Paulo, estimated the population density at 87.6 ± 28.3 individuals per km2 (Marsden et al. 2003). The subpopulation structure is not known.

Based on the estimated area of tree cover with at least 30% canopy cover within the species's range in 2010 (88,300 km2; Global Forest Watch 2021), the above density estimate, and assuming that 5-25% of tree cover within the range is occupied, the population size is tentatively suspected to fall within the range 262,000 - 2,560,000 individuals, roughly equating to 175,000 - 1,710,000 mature individuals.

Trend justification
Based on remote sensing data on tree cover loss, approximately 4% of tree cover with at least 30% canopy cover was lost from the species's range over ten years to 2020 (Global Forest Watch 2021). Projecting forwards, it is estimated that up to 5% of tree cover will be lost from the species's range over the next ten years. Although the species is tolerant of logged and secondary forest, it is dependent on forest habitat and so its population size is suspected to be declining. The species's population size is therefore suspected to be declining of a rate of 1-9% per decade.

Distribution and population

Ramphodon naevius occurs in the Atlantic forest of south-east Brazil (Espírito Santo, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Paraná and Santa Catarina, with a historic record from Rio Grande do Sul (Sick 1993; Parker et al. 1996; WikiAves 2021).


It occurs in the understorey of lowland Atlantic forest, including logged and secondary growth. It is often recorded along streams. It feeds on nectar of long-tubed flowers, mainly Bromeliaceae and Heliconiaceae (Sazima et al. 1995).


Agricultural conversion and deforestation for mining and plantation production historically threatened its lowland forest habitats (Fearnside 1996). Current key threats are urbanisation, industrialisation, agricultural expansion and associated road-building (Dinerstein et al. 1995).

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
CITES Appendix II. It occurs in several protected areas.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Monitor population at strongholds and search for the species in potentially suitable habitat at new sites. Study its ecology and its ability to persist in degraded and fragmented habitats. Attempt to obtain an accurate estimate of its population size and trends. Monitor habitat loss. Effectively protect and manage cores areas of remaining habitat. 


Text account compilers
Wheatley, H.

Capper, D., Sharpe, C.J., Benstead, P., Symes, A. & Mendes Lima, D.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Species factsheet: Ramphodon naevius. Downloaded from on 06/06/2023. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2023) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 06/06/2023.