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Turquoise Cotinga Cotinga ridgwayi
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High rates of deforestation in this species's small range are causing severe habitat fragmentation and presumably rapid population declines. It consequently qualifies as Vulnerable.

Taxonomic source(s)
AOU. 1998. Check-list of North American birds. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C.
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.

17.5 cm. Beautiful, bright blue cotinga. Male bright turquoise-blue, with deep violet chin, throat, upper breast and centre of belly. Mostly black wings and tail, with broad blue edges to wing-coverts and margins to flight feathers. Some dark mottling on mantle. Female dusky above, spotted white on crown and hindneck. Buffy underparts, finely spotted black on throat and conspicuously on breast. Voice Mostly silent, males produce wing slurrings and females raucous shrieks.

Distribution and population
Cotinga ridgwayi inhabits the Pacific slope of central and west Costa Rica and westernmost Panama, where it is generally rare and local. Historically, it occurred from west Chiriquí, Panama, west to Pozo Azul de Pirris, westernmost Puntarenas, Costa Rica. Recent records are from the Santa Clara area west of Volcán and El Chorogo (singles in 1998-1999, a pair in 2000), Panama (Ridgely and Gwynne 1989, Angehr and Jordán 1998, G. R. Angehr in litt. 1998, Snow 1982, Angehr in litt. 2003) and in Costa Rica, in the eastern foothills, the Osa Peninsula and Carara Biological Reserve (which is the only modern locality known in the north-west half of its range) (Wege and Long 1995, Costa Rica Gateway 1998). However, deducing its current distribution is complicated by its irregular occurrence at some sites (Wege and Long 1995).

Population justification
The population is estimated to number 2,500-9,999 individuals based on an assessment of known records, descriptions of abundance and range size. This is consistent with recorded population density estimates for congeners or close relatives with a similar body size, and the fact that only a proportion of the estimated Extent of Occurrence is likely to be occupied. This estimate is equivalent to 1,667-6,666 mature individuals, rounded here to 1,500-7,000 mature individuals.

Trend justification
There are no new data on population trends; however, the species is still suspected to be undergoing a rapid decline in line with rates of forest destruction and degradation.

It occurs in the canopy and borders of humid forest, secondary growth, and tall trees in shade coffee plantations (Ridgely and Gwynne 1989). In Panama, it occurs mainly between 1200 and 1600 m (sometimes lower), but it occurs mainly below 900 m (it has been recorded as high as 1,850 m) in Costa Rica (Ridgely and Gwynne 1989) (Stiles and Skutch 1989, Angehr in litt. 2007). Eggs are laid around March (Snow 1982).

Agricultural conversion has resulted in near-complete deforestation in its Panamanian range, and there is similar large-scale habitat destruction in Costa Rica.

Conservation Actions Underway
It occurs in Carara Biological Reserve and Corcovado National Park, Costa Rica (Wege and Long 1995). Conservation Actions Proposed
Survey the north-west of its range to locate extant populations. Promote sensitive management of habitats in the Santa Clara area, Panama, and (in particular) discourage the conversion of shade coffee plantations to sun coffee (Angehr and Jordán 1998, Angehr in litt. 2003).

Angehr, G. R.; Jordan, O. 1998. Report on the Panama Important Bird Areas program. Panama Audubon Society/BirdLife International, Ancon, Panamá.

Costa Rica Gateway. 1998. Rancho's bird list.

Ridgely, R. S.; Gwynne, J. A. 1989. A guide to the birds of Panama with Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Honduras. Princeton University Press, Princeton.

Snow, D. 1982. The cotingas: bellbirds, umbrellabirds and their allies. British Museum (Natural History) and Oxford University Press, London and Oxford.

Stiles, F.G. and Skutch, A.F. 1989. A Guide to the Birds of Costa Rica. Cornell University Press, Ithaca, NY.

Wege, D. C.; Long, A. J. 1995. Key Areas for threatened birds in the Neotropics. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K.

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
Isherwood, I., Mahood, S., Pople, R., Sharpe, C J, Stuart, T.

Angehr, G.

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

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2016) Species factsheet: Cotinga ridgwayi. Downloaded from on 24/10/2016. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2016) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 24/10/2016.

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 - Turquoise cotinga (Cotinga ridgwayi) 0

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Vulnerable
Family Cotingidae (Cotingas)
Species name author Ridgway, 1887
Population size 1500-7000 mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 8,400 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species