Collocalia fuciphaga

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Apodiformes
Family: Apodidae

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Collocalia fuciphaga

Collocalia fuciphaga is a chordate, or more specifically a bird, in the Apodidae family.

Collocalia fuciphaga is commonly known (its common name) as the Edible-Nest Swiftlet in English.

Collocalia fuciphaga is classified as least concern by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, the world's most comprehensive inventory of the global conservation status of plant and animal species maintained by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources.




Species Authority: The species authority, or the name(s) of scientist(s) or person(s) who first described Collocalia fuciphaga is (Thunberg, 1812) (IUCN Red List).

Summary: Genera Hydrochous Collocalia Aerodramus Schoutedenapus

The birds called Swiftlets or Cave Swiftlets are contained within the four genera Aerodramus, Hydrochous, Schoutedenapus and Collocalia. They form the Collocaliini tribe within the swift family Apodidae. The group contains around thirty species mostly confined to southern Asia, south Pacific islands, and northeastern Australia, all within the tropical and subtropical regions. They are in many respects typical members of the Apodidae, having narrow wings for fast flight, with a wide gape and small reduced beak surrounded by bristles for catching insects in flight. What distinguishes many but not all species from other swifts and indeed almost all other birds [1] is their ability to use a simple but effective form of echolocation to navigate in total darkness through the chasms and shafts of the caves where they roost at night and breed. The nests of some species are collected for the famous Chinese delicacy Bird's nest soup.

(Wikipedia).

Country Distribution: Collocalia fuciphaga is found in the following countries:
    Brunei Darussalam, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar
(IUCN Red List).

Biome(s)/Ecosystem(s): IUCN lists the following as biomes for Collocalia fuciphaga: Terrestrial (IUCN Red List).

Major Habitat(s): 1.6 Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist 1.9 Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Montane (IUCN Red List).

Range: This species has a large range, with an estimated global Extent of Occurrence of 100,000-1,000,000 km. The global population size has not been quantified, but it is believed to be large as the species is described as 'abundant' in at least parts of its range (del Hoyo et al. 1999). Global population trends have not been quantified; there is evidence of a population decline (del Hoyo et al. 1999), but the species is not believed to approach the thresholds for the population decline criterion of the IUCN Red List (i.e. declining more than 30% in ten years or three generations). For these reasons, the species is evaluated as Least Concern. (IUCN Red List).

CONSERVATION STATUS

Red List Category & Criteria: Collocalia fuciphaga is listed as LC    ver 3.1 (2001) (IUCN Red List).

Year Assessed: Collocalia fuciphaga's status was assessed in 2004 (IUCN Red List).

Assessor: Collocalia fuciphaga's Red List status was evaluated by BirdLife International (IUCN Red List).

Red List Evaluator: The Red List Evaluator for Collocalia fuciphaga is listed by IUCN as Ekstrom, J. & Butchart, S. (BirdLife International Red List Authority) (IUCN Red List).

Red List Rational / Justification : Collocalia fuciphaga is listed by IUCN for the following: This species has a large range, with an estimated global extent of occurrence of 100,0001,000,000 km. The global population size has not been quantified, but it is believed to be large as the species is described as 'abundant' in at least parts of its range (del Hoyo et al. 1999). Global population trends have not been quantified; there is evidence of a population decline (del Hoyo et al. 1999), but the species is not believed to approach the thresholds for the population decline criterion of the IUCN Red List (i.e., declining more than 30% in ten years or three generations). For these reasons, the species is evaluated as Least Concern. (IUCN Red List).

Red List History: Collocalia fuciphaga was listed on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species in 1988 (IUCN Red List).

Ecology:

Guano from both the swiftlets and the many bats that inhabit the caves supports a huge array of specialized animals that feed on the dung. There are yet other creatures that have evolved to feed on these dung eaters as well as on the bats and the swiftlets themselves, including snakes that can climb the sheer walls to snatch a passing meal and huge carnivorous crickets that prey on chicks and bat pups. This cave fauna ecosystem is self-sustaining, the only link with the outside being the birds and the bats that bring the nutrients into the caves in the first place.

The Philippine municipality of El Nido in Palawan, known for its limestone cliffs and pristine beaches is home to a thriving Bird's Nest market. The name El Nido is the Spanish term for literally "The Nest". Many locals still practice manual climbing of the limestone caves to gather Swiftlet nests.

The swift family remains one of the more complicated groups of birds in taxonomic research, but the swiftlet tribe is a rather well-defined group. Its internal systematics is confusing; the plumage is usually dull, with shades of black, brown, and gray; from their outward appearance, most species are very similar. Swiftlets have four toes, except the Papuan swiftlet which lacks the hallux (back toe). Their legs are very short, preventing the birds from perching, but allowing them to cling to vertical surfaces. Flight is mainly gliding due to very long primary feathers and small breast muscles. The larger Aerodramus swiftlets weigh about 14 grams and are 10 cm long.

Swiftlets are insectivores; hymenopterans and dipterans being the most abundant prey (Lourie & Tompkins, 2000). Typically, they leave the cave during the day to forage and return to their roost at night. Males and females look similar; as usual in such cases, these birds are monogamous and both partners take part in caring for the nestlings. Males perform aerial displays to attract females and mating occurs at the nest. The breeding season overlaps the wet season, which corresponds to an increased insect population. Clutch size depends on the location and the food source, but it is generally not large; Aerodramus swiftlets lay 1-2 eggs. The eggs are a dull white color and are laid every other day. Many if not all species are colonial nesters; some build their nests in high, dark corners on cave walls. Swiftlets in temperate zones do migrate but, most Aerodramus swiftlets live in the tropical Indo-Pacific region and do not migrate. These birds usually remain in one cave or other roosting/nesting site. Some examples of caves include the Niah Caves, Gunung Mulu National Park, and Niah National Park which are all located in Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo.

The genus Aerodramus is of special interest due to its use of echolocation and their intricately constructed saliva nests which in some species contain no other material such as feathers, moss or twigs and are collected, selling at extremely high prices (see Bird's nest soup). Over the past twenty years, the high demand for the nests of some Aerodramus species has had an adverse effect on their populations (Hobbs, 2003; Marcone, 2005).

The use of echolocation was once used to separate Aerodramus from the non-echolocating genera Collocalia and Hydrochous (virtually nothing is known about Schoutedenapus). But recently, the Pygmy Swiftlet Collocalia troglodytes was discovered making similar clicking noises in and outside their cave (Price et al., 2004). Characteristics of behavior, such as what materials apart from saliva the nests contain, can be used to differentiate between certain species of Aerodramus (Lee et al., 1996).

(Wikipedia).

Data Sources for IUCN data: The following is a list of citations from the IUCN web site for Collocalia fuciphaga:

Citations listed by IUCN

Bird Reference Citations. The numbers inserted in the text accounts above (usually in bold) refer to references. For further details on these references, click on the BirdLife International link above to go to the specific species account on the BirdLife web site. In some cases, particularly in the taxonomic notes, the references are cited using the author names. Details for these can be found on the BirdLife International web site at the following two places:
For References from A–L.
For References from M–Z.

BirdLife International. 2000. Threatened Birds of the World. Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, U.K.

BirdLife International. 2004 Threatened Birds of the World 2004. CD-ROM. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K.

(IUCN Red List).

References: Wikipedia lists the following as references for Collocalia fuciphaga:
Camfield, Alaine (2004) Apodidae. Animal Diversity Web (online). Accessed August 24, 2006. Fullard, James H. (1993): Echolocation in Free-Flying Atiu Swiftlets (Aerodramus sawtelli). Biotropica 25: 334-339. PDF fulltext Gausset, Quentin (2004): Chronicle of a Foreseeable Tragedy: Birds' Nests Management in the Niah Caves (Sarawak). Human Ecology 32(4): 487-506. DOI:10.1023/B:HUEC.0000043517.23277.54 (HTML abstract) Hobbs, Joseph J. (2004): Problems in the harvest of edible birds' nests in Sarawak and Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. Biodiversity and Conservation 13(12): 2209-2226. DOI:10.1023/B:BIOC.0000047905.79709.7f (HTML abstract) Lee, Patricia L. M.; Clayton, Dale H.; Griffiths, Richard & Page, Roderic D. M. (1996): Does behavior reflect phylogeny in swiftlets (Aves: Apodidae)? A test using cytochrome b mitochondrial DNA sequences. Proc.Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 93: 7091-7096. PDF fulltext Lourie, S. A. & Tompkins, D. M. (2000): The diets of Malaysian swiftlets. Ibis 142(4): 596-602. HTML abstract Marcone, Massimo F. (2005): Characterization of the edible bird's nest the "Caviar of the East". Food Research International 38(10) :1125-1134. DOI:10.1016/j.foodres.2005.02.008 (HTML abstract) Price, Jordan J.; Johnson, Kevin, P.; Bush, Sarah H. & Clayton, Dale H. (2005): Phylogenetic relationships of the Papuan Swiftlet Aerodramus papuensis and implications for the evolution of avian echolocation. Ibis 147(4) 790-796. PDF fulltext Price, Jordan J.; Johnson, Kevin P. & Clayton, Dale H. (2004): The evolution of echolocation in swiftlets. Journal of Avian Biology 35(2): 135-143. PDF fulltext Thomassen, Henri A.; Tex, Robert-Jan; Bakker, Merijn A.G. & Povel, G. David E. (2005): Phylogenetic relationships amongst swifts and swiftlets: A multi locus approach. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 37(1): 264-277. DOI:10.1016/j.ympev.2005.05.010 (HTML abstract) Thomassen, Henri A. & Povel, G. David E. (2006): Comparative and phylogenetic analysis of the echo clicks and social vocalizations of swiftlets (Aves: Apodidae). Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 88(4): 631643. DOI:10.1111/j.1095-8312.2006.00648.x (HTML abstract) (Wikipedia).

Links: IUCN Red List Profile for Collocalia fuciphaga (IUCN Red List).

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