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Overview

Distribution

Range Description

Cyanolyca nana is known historically from Veracruz adjacent to the border with Puebla and the Sierras Juárez, Aloapaneca and Zempoaltepec in Oaxaca south-east Mexico. It was feared extinct throughout this range except for the Cerro San Felipe in the Sierra Aloapaneca, where it remains quite common. However, it is now known to be more widespread. There are records from Tangojó in extreme east Querétaro, north Hidalgo, central Veracruz and La Chinantla in north Oaxaca, and it may be locally common where suitable habitat persists (M. Angel Martínez, E. Ruelas and R. Sanchez pers. comm. to A. G. Navarro in litt. 1998, A. G. Navarro in litt. 1998, Rojas-Soto et al. in press).

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Range

Oak-pine forests of sw Mexico (Vera Cruz, Puebla and Oaxaca).

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Ecology

Habitat

Sierra Madre de Oaxaca Pine-oak Forests Habitat

This taxon is found in the Sierra Madre de Oaxaca pine-oak forests, an ecoregion of northern Oaxaca, Mexico exhibiting a large number of endangered species, so that the conservation value is outstanding in terms of uniqueness of the habitat. The Sierra Madre de Oaxaca pine-oak forests is within the Tropical and Subtropical Conifer Forests biome, and the ecoregion is known for elevated plant endemism, especially within the Sierra de Juarez montane forests.

This ecoregion is located in northern Oaxaca State, and is delineated by the Sierra Norte de Oaxaca Mountains, which have characteristically abrupt and rugged topography. Its tallest peak is Zempoaltepetl (3400 metres), and most of the terrain in this area is above 1000 metres. Three mountain chains or sierras constitute the Sierra Madre de Oaxaca: Juarez, Aloapaneca and Zempoaltepec. The climate is temperate and humid with annual temperatures ranging from 16°C to 20°C. The annual mean precipitation varies greatly from 700 millimetres (mm) to as great as 4000 mm.

The forests also exhibit a high diversity of amphibians, including: the endemic Acultzingo Pigmy Salamander (Thorius dubitus EN), known only from the type locality near Puerto del Aire near Veracruz; the endemic Claw-toed False Brook Salamander (Pseudoeurycea unguidentis CR), known solely from Cerro San Felipe /Cerro San Luis in north-central Oaxaca; the endemic Lower Cerro Pygmy Salamander (Thorius pulmonaris EN), known only from Cerro San Felipe region, central Oaxaca; MacDougal's Pygmy Salamander (Thorius macdougalli VU); and the endemic Mexican Axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum CR), found in Lakes Chalco and Xochimilco of the Valley of Mexico near Mexico City; the near-endemic Sierra Juarez Moss Salamander (Cryptotriton adelos EN); the endemic Schmidt's Pygmy Salamander (Thorius schmidti EN), known only from near the village of Zoquitlán in southern Puebla, Mexico; and the endemic Mustache False Brook Salamander (Pseudoeurycea mystax EN).

The Sierra Juarez Spiny Lizard (Sceloporus cryptus) is endemic to the ecoregion, and limited in range to drier parts of the Sierra de Juarez, in northeastern Oaxaca. There are a number of threatened reptilian taxa in the ecoregion including the Ribbon Graceful Brown Snake (Rhadinaea fulvivittis VU), a limited distribution snake endemic to southern Mexico.

Avian taxa found here include the Dwarf Jay (Cyanolyca nana EN), Bearded Tree Quail (Dendrortyx barbatus CR), Tamaulipas Pygmy-owl (Glaucidium sanchezi) and Grey-barred Wren (Campylorhynchus megalopterus) as restricted-range bird species, which includes this ecoregion. The Oaxaca Sparrow (Aimophila notosticta NT), Golden-cheeked Warbler (Dendroica chrysoparia EN), Russet Nightingale-thrush (Catharus occidentalis), Hooded Yellowthroat (Geothlypis nelsoni), and Collared Towhee (Pipilo ocai) are also species which thrive in the habitats offered by this mountainous ecoregion.

This ecoregion presents a mosaic of vegetatative associations, due to the varied climate and topography. These formations include tropical evergreen forest, montane cloud forest, pine forest, pine-oak forest, and oak forest. The pine forests, at elevations between 1600 and 2600 metres (m), include trees that are 25 to 40 m tall. Dominant pine species are Mexican White Pine (Pinus ayacahuite); Lawson's Pine (P. lawsonii), a Mexican endemic; Chiapas White Pine (P. strobus var. chiapensischiapensis); Michoacan Pine (P. devoniana LR/LC) and Smooth-barked Mexican Pine (P. pseudostrobus). These pine forests have a robust understory and an herbacious layer dominated by numerous species of the Ericaceae family.

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Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
It has been observed in several humid montane forest-associations, but most abundantly in pine-oak-fir associations and areas with an even mix of pine and oak. Laurel and abundant epiphytic growth are characteristic of these associations. Lower densities occur in oak-dominated forest, and its occurrence in secondary growth depends on the predominance of the preferred tree-associations and nearby tracts of primary forest. Suitable breeding habitat has a sufficiently open canopy to allow the development of a dense subcanopy. It forages mostly from the lower subcanopy to the higher shrub layer, where it gleans invertebrates from and around epiphytes. It occurs at elevations of 1,400-3,200 m (Rojas-Soto et al. in press), but only above 1,670 m in the centre and south of its range. This is plausibly a natural altitudinal distribution, but it may have been extirpated from the lower elevations in the south of its range. The breeding season begins at Cerro San Felipe in early April.


Systems
  • Terrestrial
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Cyanolyca nana

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 0
Specimens with Barcodes: 2
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
VU
Vulnerable

Red List Criteria
A2c+3c+4c;B1ab(i,ii,iii,iv,v)

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2012

Assessor/s
BirdLife International

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

Contributor/s
Escalante, P., Navarro, A. & Peterson, A.

Justification
This species is considered Vulnerable because it has a small range, which is declining rapidly in response to habitat loss.

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Population

Population
The population size is preliminarily estimated to fall into the band 10,000-19,999 individuals. This equates to 6,667-13,333 mature individuals, rounded here to 6,000-15,000 mature individuals.

Population Trend
Decreasing
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Threats

Major Threats
Logging, agricultural expansion, firewood-gathering, road and tourist developments, sheep-ranching, intense grazing and intensive urbanisation have resulted in extensive and continuing destruction and fragmentation of its habitat (Dinerstein et al. 1995). It is prone to nest-desertion following human disturbance, suggesting that there are few predators of adult birds. The continuing spread of West Nile virus is not thought to pose a serious threat, and no related mortality has been detected in this species (P. Escalante in litt. 2005).

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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
Conservation Actions Underway
Cerro San Felipe is officially within Benito Juárez National Park, but the boundaries of this relatively small reserve have never been demarcated (Salas et al. 1994) and it offers the species little protection (A. T. Peterson in litt. 1998).

Conservation Actions Proposed
Survey to assess more precisely the extent of its distribution. Demarcate and effectively protect the boundaries of Benito Juárez National Park. Protect sites where the species has been recently recorded.

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Wikipedia

Dwarf jay

The dwarf jay (Cyanolyca nanus) is a species of bird in the Corvidae family. It is endemic to Mexico. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist montane forests. As its name would imply, this is the smallest member of the family Corvidae at 20–23 cm long and weighing 41 g. It is threatened by habitat loss.

References[edit]


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