Green imperial-pigeon

   ›      ›   Green imperial-pigeon - Ducula aenea

The green imperial-pigeon (Ducula aenea) belongs to the family of doves and imperial-pigeons, the Columbidae.

The green imperial-pigeon species is distributed in India, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Bangladesh, China and southeast Asia. These large imperial-pigeon species are found in forests, mangroves and grasslands. These imperial-pigeons are polytypic species.
Overview & Quick Facts Description & Identification
Pictures of Green Imperial-pigeon Distribution & Range
Ecosystem & Habitat Diet & Feeding Behavior
Breeding Habits Migration & Movement Patterns
Conservation & Survival IUCN Status
Taxonomy & Classification Bird World

Appearance, physical description and identification

The green imperial-pigeon (Ducula aenea) is a large imperial-pigeon, measuring 40 to 50 cm in length and weighing 360 to 650 grams.

The back, wings, rump and tail of these green imperial-pigeon species are iridescent, metallic green. The head, neck, upper mantle, breast, upper belly are pale grayish pink. The nape and hindneck are chestnut-pink.

The bill is pale blue. The irises are dark brown. The legs are dark red. The call of these green imperial-pigeon species is a loud, growling or purring sound.
Indian birds - Photo of Green imperial pigeon - Ducula aenea
1.Birds of India - Photo of Green imperial pigeon - Ducula aenea by Earthshine..

Birds of India - Photo of Green imperial pigeon - Ducula aenea
2.Indian birds -Photo of Green imperial pigeon - Ducula aenea by DickDaniels

Indian birds - Photo of Green imperial pigeon - Ducula aenea
3.Birds of India - Photo of Green imperial pigeon - Ducula aenea by cuatrok77

Origin, geographical range and distribution

These green imperial-pigeon species are distributed in India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, China, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Indonesia and Philippines.

In India, these green imperial-pigeons are distributed in the states of Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, Jharkhand, Bihar, Assam, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur, Tripura, Mizoram and Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

Ecosystem and habitat

These green imperial-pigeon species have moderate forest dependence. They normally occur in altitudes from 0 to 1000 meters. The artificial ecosystems and habitats of these species include heavily degraded tropical and subtropical forests.

The natural ecosystems and habitats of these green imperial-pigeon species include tropical and subtropical mangrove forests, moist lowland forests, tropical and subtropical dry and moist shrublands.

Diet and feeding behavior

The diet of these green imperial-pigeon species consists mainly of fruits. Wild fruits, berries, figs, flowers, leaves and other plant matter are their primary food. They are arboreal and forage in the tree canopy.

Reproduction and breeding habits

The breeding season of these green imperial-pigeon species is from December to May in south India, Sri Lanka and Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The laying season is from March to June in northern India. They are monogamous and territorial.

These imperial-pigeon species nest on the fork of tree branches. The nest is a flimsy structure built with sticks and twigs. The clutch contains one or two white eggs. Both the parents share incubation and also care of nestlings.

The hatchlings are fed with nutritiously rich crop milk, which is a thick cheesy substance, produced in the crop of both males and females, by sloughing off squamous cells.

Migration and movement patterns

These green imperial-pigeon species are non-migratory resident birds.

Post breeding, the resident juveniles may disperse and establish in new locations within the range. Within their range they may make local movements for feeding and breeding.

Green imperial-pigeon - Quick Facts

  • Scientific name: Ducula aenea
  • Species author: (Linnaeus, 1766)
  • Synonyms/Protonym: Columba ænea Linnaeus, 1766
  • Family: Columbidae › Columbiformes › Aves › Chordata › Animalia
  • Vernacular names: English: Green imperial-pigeon, Chinese: 绿皇鸠, French: Carpophage pauline, German: Bronzefruchttaube, Spanish: Dúcula verde, Russian: Мускатный плодоядный голубь, Japanese: ミカドバト
  • Other names: Chestnut-naped Imperial-pigeon, Nicobar Imperial-pigeon
  • Distribution: India, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Bangladesh, China, southeast Asia
  • Diet and feeding habits: fruits, berries, figs
  • IUCN status listing: Least Concern (LC)

Conservation and survival

The global population size of the green imperial-pigeon (Ducula aenea) has not been quantified. The overall population trend of the species is considered to be decreasing.

In most of its range, this species is reported to be widespread and common (del Hoyo et al. 1997). The generation length is 6.6 years. Its distribution size is about 16,800,000

Habitat alteration and destruction, human intrusions and disturbance at the nesting sites and capture for pet-trade are the main threats that are endangering the survival of these species.

IUCN and CITES status

The green imperial-pigeon (Ducula aenea) does not approach the thresholds for being Vulnerable, either under the range size criterion, or under the population trend criterion or under the population size criterion.

The IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) has categorized and evaluated the species and has listed it as of "Least Concern".

The CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) status is ‘Not Evaluated’ for the green imperial-pigeon (Ducula aenea).
Taxonomy and scientific classification of Ducula aenea
Species:D. aenea
Binomial name:Ducula aenea
IUCN status listing:
Least Concern
The green imperial-pigeon (Ducula aenea) is closely related to Enggano imperial-pigeon (Ducula oenothorax), spectacled imperial-pigeon (Ducula perspicillata), Seram imperial pigeon (Ducula neglecta) and elegant imperial pigeon, (Ducula concinna).

The twelve recognized subspecies of the green imperial-pigeon (Ducula aenea) are: D. a. aenea, D. a. intermedia, D. a. palawanensis, D. a. paulina, D. a. nuchalis, D. a. sylvatica, D. a. fugaensis, D. a. pusilla, D. a. polia, D. a. andamanica, D. a. consobrina and D. a. nicobarica.
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1.Photo source: (cropped)
Photo author: Earthshine.. | License: CC BY 3.0 as on 5/2/18
2.Photo source: (cropped)
Photo author: DickDaniels | License: CC BY-SA 3.0 as on 5/2/18
3.Photo source: (cropped)
Photo author: cuatrok77 | License: CC BY-SA 2.0 as on 5/2/18
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