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Geotrygon caniceps

Gray-fronted Quail-Dove

  • Order: Columbiformes
  • Family: Columbidae

Authors: Kirwan, Guy M

Geotrygon caniceps

Bermejas, Zapata Swamp, Cuba; 12 February 2013 © Harold Davis

The Gray-fronted Quail-Dove is considered endemic to Cuba, where it is generally a rare and local resident, although the species is still comparatively numerous in parts of the west of the island, especially on the Zapata Peninsula. Formerly, this species was treated as conspecific with the White-fronted Quail-Dove (Geotrygon leucometopia) of Hispaniola, under the name Gray-headed Quail-Dove, but they are separable on plumage and vocalizations. This species feeds on fruit and seeds, foraged on the ground, usually in mid-elevation forests, but the Gray-fronted Quail-Dove occurs to sea level locally. Most frequently encountered crossing a forest trail, with patience and by standing quietly, the birds may approach closely when absorbed in their feeding; at other times, if disturbed, they are capable of quickly ‘melting’ into the forest, even in areas with a relatively open undergrowth. This is a beautiful quail-dove when seen well, being dark gray above with a conspicuous blue and purple iridescence, becoming paler below, with a bright white forehead and paler gray crown; seen briefly, however, the overall impression is simply of a mid-sized, largely dark pigeon.

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Recommended Citation

Kirwan, Guy M. 2010. Gray-fronted Quail-Dove (Geotrygon caniceps), Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Ithaca: Cornell Lab of Ornithology; retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online: http://neotropical.birds.cornell.edu/portal/species/overview?p_p_spp=179221

This map is based on the maps available from the NatureServe InfoNatura website. The data for these maps are provided by NatureServe in collaboration with Robert Ridgely, James Zook, The Nature Conservancy - Migratory Bird Program, Conservation International - CABS, World Wildlife Fund - US, and Environment Canada - WILDSPACE.

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