Justification of Red List Category
This sparsely distributed species is listed as Near Threatened because it probably has a moderately small population and is likely to be in decline owing to habitat loss and degradation.
The global population size has not been quantified, but the species is described as uncommon to rare (del Hoyo et al. 1999).
A slow to moderate population decline is suspected to be occurring overall, as declines are taking place in parts of the species's range owing to habitat loss and degradation.
Harpactes wardi is known from the eastern Himalayas in China (three collected in north-west Yunnan, 1973), Bhutan (uncommon and local, although recorded regularly in recent years), India (currently known from at least three regions in Arunachal Pradesh, and one region from northern West Bengal and adjoining eastern Sikkim, where it is apparently local and rare [Rahut 2013; B. Rahut in litt. 2016]), Myanmar (formerly locally common in north, but there are no recent records and it is thought to be generally uncommon) and Vietnam (previously common on Fansipan, north-west Tonkin, but there are no recent records despite intensive searching) (BirdLife International 2001).
This species is found in the lower storey, undergrowth and bamboo of tall broadleaved evergreen forest between 1,500 and 3,200 m, perhaps moving to lower elevations during the cold season, down to c.1,220 m in some areas.
This species is threatened by forest clearance and degradation in much of its range, particularly through subsistence logging and shifting cultivation. It is also probably susceptible to hunting, at least in South-East Asia.
Conservation Actions Underway
No targeted conservation actions have been initiated for this species, although it occurs in a number of protected areas.
Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct repeated surveys throughout the range to determine current distribution and abundance, as well as evaluate population trends and rates of range contraction. Conduct ecological studies to identify habitat requirements and assess levels of tolerance of habitat disturbance. Protect areas of suitable habitat, and involve local stakeholders in the conservation of sites targeted for the protection of this species (M.L. Thakur in litt. 2016). Raise awareness of the species and its status in an effort to reduce potential hunting pressure.
Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Gilroy, J., Taylor, J., Westrip, J.
Thakur, M., Rahut, B.
BirdLife International (2020) Species factsheet: Harpactes wardi. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 31/05/2020. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2020) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 31/05/2020.