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Overview

Comprehensive Description

Description

This species is endemic to Madagascar and some Comoro Islands. It inhabits woodland habitats.

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Source: Afrotropical birds in the RMCA

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Biology

This small Vanga is distinctive by its bright blue upperparts and white underparts.

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Distribution

Madagascar and Comoro Islands. Three subspecies are currently recognized (Yamagishi & Nakamura 2009):

bensoni Louette & Herremans, 1982 - Grand Comoro

comorensis (Shelley, 1894) - Mohéli

madagascarinus (Linnaeus, 1766) - Madagascar

More information about the distribution of the several subspecies is available at ibc.lynxeds.com.

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Physical Description

Morphology

Adults have bright blue upperparts (incl. head), white underparts (incl. throat) and brilliant pale blue bill. Female is somewhat duller than male (Yamagishi & Nakamura 2009).

Juveniles have grey-blue upperparts (incl. head) and black bill.

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Size

Length: 16-19 cm (Yamagishi & Nakamura 2009)

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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Systems
  • Terrestrial
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Nominate race on Madagascar inhabits deciduous dry forest in W and evergreen humid forest in E; Comoro races are found in all types of woodland (Yamagishi & Nakamura 2009).

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Dispersal

Movements and dispersal

Probably mainly sedentary (Yamagishi & Nakamura 2009).

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Trophic Strategy

It feeds on insects and occasionally berries. It often feeds while hanging from its feet, upside-down, in leaf clusters near ends of thin branches (Yamagishi & Nakamura 2009).

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Population Biology

The global population size has not been quantified, but the species is described as common (Morris and Hawkins 1998 in BirdLife International 2011). Only the bensoni race on Grand Comoro is extremely rare, believed possibly extinct by some authors (Yamagishi & Nakamura 2009).

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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Genetics

Comoro races bensoni and comorensis possibly represent a separate species, differing from nominate race madagascarinus in plumage and voice (Yamagishi & Nakamura 2009).

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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2012

Assessor/s
BirdLife International

Reviewer/s
Butchart, S. & Symes, A.

Contributor/s

Justification
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 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 trend is not known, but the population is not believed to be decreasing sufficiently rapidly to approach the thresholds under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed 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). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
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Conservation

IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC)

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Population

Population
The global population size has not been quantified, but the species is described as common (Morris and Hawkins 1998).

Population Trend
Unknown
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Wikipedia

Blue Vanga

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