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Toucan Barbet Semnornis ramphastinus
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The range of this species is moderately small and decreasing owing to habitat loss. Its population is also thought to be declining moderately rapidly owing to trapping and habitat loss. It is consequently classified as Near Threatened but could potentially be uplisted in the near future if illegal trade and habitat destruction continue uncontrolled.

Taxonomic source(s)
del Hoyo, J.; Collar, N. J.; Christie, D. A.; Elliott, A.; Fishpool, L. D. C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International.
SACC. 2006. A classification of the bird species of South America. Available at: #

Distribution and population
Semnornis ramphastinus is uncommon to common on both slopes of the West Andes in south-west Colombia (Risaralda, Valle del Cauca, Cauca and Nariño) and north-west Ecuador at 1,000-2,400 m (Fjeldså and Krabbe 1990, Sibley and Monroe 1990, Parker et al. 1996, Ridgely and Greenfield 2001, Cuervo et al. 2003). Surveys at La Planada Nature Reserve, Colombia, in the mid to late 1980s suggested an estimated world population of c.73,000 individuals (Restrepo and Mondragon 1987) and it was described as 'common to abundant' at Alto de Pisones, Risaralda, in 2000 (Cuervo et al. 2003).

Population justification
The global population size has not been quantified, but this species is described as 'uncommon' (Stotz et al. 1996).

Trend justification
A moderately rapid and on-going population decline is suspected owing to illegal trapping and habitat loss.

It is found in the canopy of premontane to montane evergreen forest and edge but also occurs in dense second growth, overgrown pastures and dense growth with scattered trees around gardens. Fruits of Cecropia and Ficus are particularly important food resources (Freile and Chaves 2004).

It is trapped for the local and international cage-bird trade (Hilty and Brown 1986). There is low reproductive success owing to competition for nest-sites with, and predation of young by Plate-billed Mountain-toucan Andigena laminirostris (Restrepo and Mondragon 1987). Uncontrolled colonisation following the completion of roads and massive logging concessions have cleared or degraded over 40% of its Chocó forests, and deforestation is accelerating (Salaman 1994). Currently, intensive logging, human settlement, cattle grazing, mining and coca and palm cultivation pose threats to its remaining forests (Dinerstein et al. 1995).

Conservation Actions Underway
CITES III. Present in several protected areas including La Planada Nature Reserve, and Río Ñambi Natural Reserve, Colombia. Conservation Actions Proposed
Control illegal trapping. Effectively protect and manage protected areas where the species occurs. Protect Alto de Pisones. Monitor population at strongholds and search for the species in potentially suitable habitat at new sites. Study its ecology and its ability to persist in degraded and fragmented habitats. Use GIS habitat loss data to produce estimate of declines.

Cuervo, A. M.; Stiles, F. G.; Cadena, C. D.; Toro, J. L.; Londono, G. A. 2003. New and noteworthy bird records from the northern sector of the Western Andes of Colombia. Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club 123: 7-24.

Dinerstein, E.; Olson, D. M.; Graham, D. J.; Webster, A. L.; Primm, S. A.; Bookbinder, M. P.; Ledec, G. 1995. A conservation assesssment of the terrestrial ecoregions of Latin America and the Caribbean. World Bank, Washington, D.C.

Fjeldså, J.; Krabbe, N. 1990. Birds of the high Andes. Apollo Books, Copenhagen.

Freile, J. F.; Chaves, J. A. 2004. Interesting distributional records and notes on the biology of bird species from a cloud forest reserve in north-west Ecuador. Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club 124: 6-16.

Hilty, S. L.; Brown, W. L. 1986. A guide to the birds of Colombia. Princeton University Press, Princeton.

Parker, T. A.; Stotz, D. F.; Fitzpatrick, J. W. 1996. Ecological and distributional databases. In: Stotz, D.F.; Fitzpatrick, J.W.; Parker, T.A.; Moskovits, D.K. (ed.), Neotropical bird ecology and conservation, pp. 113-436. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

Restrepo, C.; Mondragón, M. L. 1987. Historia natural de Semnornis ramphastinus (Aves: Capitonidae), una especie vulnerable.

Ridgely, R. S.; Greenfield, P. J. 2001. The birds of Ecuador: status, distribution and taxonomy. Cornell University Press and Christopher Helm, Ithaca and London.

Salaman, P. G. W. 1994. Surveys and conservation of biodiversity in the Chocó, south-west Colombia. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K.

Sibley, C. G.; Monroe, B. L. 1990. Distribution and taxonomy of birds of the world. Yale University Press, New Haven, USA.

Stotz, D. F.; Fitzpatrick, J. W.; Parker, T. A.; Moskovits, D. K. 1996. Neotropical birds: ecology and conservation. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

Further web sources of information
Explore HBW Alive for further information on this species

Search for photos and videos, and hear sounds of this species from the Internet Bird Collection

Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Capper, D., Sharpe, C J, Symes, A.

IUCN Red List evaluators
Butchart, S., Symes, A.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2016) Species factsheet: Semnornis ramphastinus. Downloaded from on 27/10/2016. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2016) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 27/10/2016.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Additional resources for this species

ARKive species - Toucan barbet (Semnornis ramphastinus) 0

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Near Threatened
Family Semnornithidae (Prong-billed Barbets)
Species name author (Jardine, 1855)
Population size Unknown mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 21,900 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species