Species Action Plans Madeira Laurel Pigeon (Columba trocaz)
This species is classified as Near Threatened because it has a very small extent of occurrence, although this is not yet severely fragmented or restricted to few locations. The population has declined as a result of habitat degradation, hunting and poisoning. [source: Birdlife.org]
[Madeira Laurel Pigeon (Columba trocaz) Europe 1995]
The Madeira Laurel Pigeon or Long-toed Pigeon Columba trocaz is endemic to the island of Madeira. It is listed as Rare in the African Red Data Book (Collar & Stuart 1985) and in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Animals (Groombridge 1993) and is classified as Conservation Dependent in Birds to Watch 2 (Collar et al. 1994). It is also included in Annex I of the EU Wild Birds Directive and in Annex III of the Bern Convention. In the Portuguese Red Data Book it is listed as Vulnerable (Cabral et al. 1990). The Madeira Laurel Pigeon formerly occurred also on the neighbouring island of Porto Santo (Pieper 1985), the reduction of its range there and on Madeira being associated with the cutting of Laurel forest for wood, agriculture, grazing and human settlements. The species used also to be very heavily hunted both for sport and because of the damage it causes to crops. The establishment of the Natural Park of Madeira has afforded legal protection to almost all of the Laurel forest which is a priority habitat listed in Annex I of the EU Habitats Directive (45.61 to 45.63 Macaronesian Laurel Forests). The inclusion of the Madeira Laurel Pigeon in Annex I of the EU Wild Birds Directive in 1986 has assured and reinforced the ban on hunting that was established in 1989 through the Decreto-Lei 75/91 which adapts the Directive to Portuguese law. The future of the species is secure now and the main tasks ahead are to monitor population trends and to promote expansion of its range through the regeneration of Laurel forest.
PAULO OLIVEIRA and BORJA HEREDIA (1995). ACTION PLAN FOR THE MADEIRA LAUREL PIGEON (Columba trocaz).