Habitat loss and urban sprawl are the major threats to greater roadrunners. The construction of roads causes fragmentation of habitat as well as mortality from cars. Greater roadrunners are also illegally shot in response to predation on quail. Further, agricultural pesticides can adversely affect the species if bioaccumulated through their prey.
Research shows that Geococcyx californianus has little chance of persisting in coastal southern California, where sage scrub areas occur only in highly populated areas. Development has reduced this potential habitat to patches too small for greater roadrunners’ large territorial requirement.
US Migratory Bird Act: protected
US Federal List: no special status
CITES: no special status
IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: least concern
- Bolger, D., A. Scott, J. Rotenberry. 1997. Breeding bird abundance in urbanizing landscape in coastal southern California. Conservation Biology, 11: 406-421.
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