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LC
African Jacana Actophilornis africanus

Justification
This species has an extremely 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 appears to be stable, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is extremely large, and hence does not 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.

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.

Population justification
The population is estimated to number 1,000,000 individuals.

Trend justification
The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.

Ecology
Behaviour This species is nomadic in relation to changing water levels with some individuals travelling as far as several kilometres between suitable habitats (del Hoyo et al. 1996). The species may breed in any month of the year in permanent wetlands but only during the wet season in seasonally flooded areas (del Hoyo et al. 1996). It has a polyandrous mating system, with males holding nesting, breeding, foraging and chick-rearing territories while females mate with several adjacent males (del Hoyo et al. 1996). The species forages singly, in pairs or in dispersed family groups (Urban et al. 1986) and may occasionally gather in small, loose flocks (Hayman et al. 1986). Habitat The species inhabits permanent or seasonally flooded shallow freshwater wetlands, requiring floating vegetation (especially water-lilies) for nesting on, as well as tall emergent vegetation near the shore for cover (del Hoyo et al. 1996, del Hoyo et al. 1996) and stagnant marshes with open water, flooded grassland, waterways choked with vegetation (e.g. water-lettuce Pistia spp., water-hyacinth Eichhornia spp., water-fern Salvinia spp. or water-weed Elodea spp.), small lakes, dams (Urban et al. 1986), ponds (Hayman et al. 1986) and the sheltered shores, inlets (Urban et al. 1986) and backwaters of broad slow-flowing rivers (Urban et al. 1986, del Hoyo et al. 1996). The species also forages amongst waterside plants or on dry land along the edge of water (Hayman et al. 1986). Diet Its diet consists predominantly of insects (del Hoyo et al. 1996) (e.g. dragonfly nymphs, bees) (Urban et al. 1986) and worms, as well as spiders, crustaceans, molluscs and occasionally seeds (del Hoyo et al. 1996). Breeding site The nest is usually a simple, partly submerged pad of aquatic vegetation, although on deeper water nests are often placed on small floating rafts of vegetation (del Hoyo et al. 1996). Management information There is evidence that the species is able to switch to nesting on less stable mats of floating aquatic plants (such as the exotic water-fern Salvinia spp.) if water-lilies are destroyed by invasive coypu Myocastor coypus in wetlands (del Hoyo et al. 1996).

Threats
The species is locally threatened by wetland degradation and loss through flooding (as a result of hydroelectric projects), drainage and overgrazing (del Hoyo et al. 1996).

References
del Hoyo, J.; Elliott, A.; Sargatal, J. 1996. Handbook of the Birds of the World, vol. 3: Hoatzin to Auks. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona, Spain.

Delany, S.; Scott, D. 2006. Waterbird population estimates. Wetlands International, Wageningen, The Netherlands.

Hayman, P.; Marchant, J.; Prater, A. J. 1986. Shorebirds. Croom Helm, London.

Urban, E. K.; Fry, C. H.; Keith, S. 1986. The birds of Africa vol. II. Academic Press, London.

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

View photos and videos and hear sounds of this species from the Internet Bird Collection

Text account compilers
Ekstrom, J., Butchart, S., Malpas, L.

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

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Actophilornis africanus. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 25/12/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 25/12/2014.

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.

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Least Concern
Family Jacanidae (Jacanas)
Species name author (Gmelin, 1789)
Population size mature individuals
Population trend Stable
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 17,000,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species
- Projected distributions under climate change