Vanikoro Monarch Mayrornis schistaceus


Justification of Red List Category
This species is categorised as Vulnerable because the relatively small population, forming a single subpopulation, is believed to be in slow decline owing mainly to habitat loss and degradation caused by the gradual expansion of subsistence agriculture. 

Population justification
The global population size is described as numbering around 5,000 individuals, based on 90 encounters in 1998 that suggest a very approximate density of 36 individuals/km2 (G. Dutson in litt. 2013).

Trend justification
There are no data on population trends; however, the population is suspected to be in slow decline owing to on-going but limited habitat degradation and conversion, primarily through encroachment for subsistence agriculture (G. Dutson in litt. 2013). Logging was reportedly re-commenced on Vanikoro in 2014 (Pierce 2014).

Distribution and population

Mayrornis schistaceus occurs on the island of Vanikoro (170 km2) and its small satellite island of Buma in the Solomon Islands. The total population has been estimated at around 5,000 individuals (based on 90 encounters in 1998) (G. Dutson in litt. 2013). It is suspected to be in slow decline owing to limited habitat loss and degradation (G. Dutson in litt. 2013).


It occurs within and at the edge of forest, and in regrowth adjacent to forest, to at least 450 m (Dutson 2011, G. Dutson in litt. 2013). It is tolerant of old logged forest but not scrubby or open habitats (Parker 1963, Gibbs 1996, Dutson 2011).


The primary threat to the species's habitat is from the gradual expansion of subsistence farming (G. Dutson in litt. 2013). Although there are no imminent plans for large-scale commercial logging, there is on-going pressure from multinational logging companies to exploit the forests of Vanikoro (G. Dutson pers. obs. 1997).

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
No targeted conservation actions are known for this species.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct regular surveys to monitor the population. Protect remaining tall forest on Vanikoro from logging and agricultural encroachment.


Text account compilers
Derhé, M., Dutson, G., Mahood, S., O'Brien, A. & Taylor, J.

Dutson, G.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Species factsheet: Mayrornis schistaceus. Downloaded from on 01/12/2022. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2022) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 01/12/2022.