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#Natureology Species of the Day – Amber Mountain rock-thrush (Monticola erythronotus)

January 8, 2013

Amber_Mt_Rock_Thrush_copyAmber Mountain rock-thrush is  small forest-dwelling thrush endemic to Madagascar. This species is listed as Endangered because it has a very small extent of occurrence and its forest habitat is declining in both area and quality.

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Males have blue hoods, chestnut upperparts, bright orange tail with brown central feathers and orange underparts. Females are much duller, mostly brown (although have an orange wash on the underparts) and lack the blue hood.

The species’s ecology is poorly known. It inhabits mid-altitude and montane humid, evergreen forest from 800-1,300 m, and forages inconspicuously in the understorey and on the ground. The species nests in tree hollows or in crevices under overhangs. The total population is estimated to number fewer than 5,000 individuals, roughly equivalent to 3,300 mature individuals.

Amber Mountain rock-thrush is restricted to a single mountain, the Amber Mountain massif in northern Madagascar, and it probably has an extent of occurrence of less than 400 km2. The total population is estimated to number less than 5,000 individuals, which occur in a single block of forest on the upper slopes of one mountain, and may be declining, although so far there has been relatively low levels of habitat loss.


Presently, there are few threats to the species. Habitat destruction through commercial logging and clearance for subsistence agriculture are widespread threats in Madagascar and may ultimately threaten this species. The clearance of forest on Amber Mountain has so far been limited.


No species specific action is known to have been taken to save this endangered species but conservation measures like identifying the species’s ecological requirements,  conducting a survey & extrapolate data for all rainforest on Amber Mountain to assess the species’s population size are proposed . Once a baseline population estimate has been obtained, continue to monitor its numbers. Plans for protection of the the species’s habitat on Amber Mountain can move a head.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. twoscamps permalink
    January 12, 2013 6:29 am

    WOW! Incredible photo of an amazing and beautiful bird!


  2. January 12, 2013 12:13 pm

    Thanks this photographs really gives strength to the message of conserving species from extinction, and do like my FB Page


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