Ecuadorian cacique | American birds

   ›      ›   Ecuadorian cacique - Cacicus sclateri

The Ecuadorian cacique (Cacicus sclateri) belongs to the family of New World orioles, oropendolas and caciques, the Icteridae.

The Ecuadorian cacique is distributed over Colombia, Ecuador and Peru in South America. The cacique species are non-migrant resident birds. These caciques are monotypic.

Overview & Quick Facts Description & Identification
Pictures of Ecuadorian Cacique 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 Ecuadorian cacique (Cacicus sclateri) is a slender cacique, measuring 19 to 23 cm in length and weighing 50 to 60 grams.

The Ecuadorian cacique has entirely black plumage. There may be a few yellow feathers on the rump. The tail is long.

The bill is long, pointed and whitish. The legs and feet are grayish. The irises are pale blue. There is a pale gray eye-ring. Their call is a loud "peek.. peek.. pio.. pio" sound.
Ecuadorian cacique - Cacicus sclateri
Ecuadorian cacique - Cacicus sclateri
Image by Alphonse Joseph Charles Dubois

Origin, geographical range and distribution

The Ecuadorian cacique species are distributed over southwest Colombia, western Ecuador and northern Peru in South America.

The Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA) of the Ecuadorian cacique in Colombia is Riberas del Río Duda. The IBA of these species in Peru is Reserva Nacional Pacaya Samiria.

The IBA of these species in Ecuador are, Territorio Achuar, Arajuno-Alto Napo, Reserva de Producción Faunística Cuyabeno and Bajo Napo.

Ecosystem and habitat

The Ecuadorian cacique species have moderate forest dependence. They normally occur in altitudes between 0 to 550 meters. The artificial ecosystems and habitats include plantations, rural gardens and degraded forests.

The natural ecosystems and habitats of the cacique species include tropical and subtropical moist lowland forests, seasonal flood plain forests, tropical and subtropical swamps and foothill forests.

Diet and feeding behavior

The diet of the Ecuadorian cacique species consists mainly of invertebrates. Insects, caterpillars, beetles, ants, spiders, fruits and nectar are their primary food.

These species are mostly arboreal and moving through the tree canopy, glean insects from the foliage. Sometimes, they forage in pairs or in small family groups.

Reproduction and breeding habits

The breeding season of these Ecuadorian cacique species is during January in most of their breeding range. They are believed to be monogamous solitary breeders. Not much is known about their reproduction and breeding habits.

Migration and movement patterns

These species are non-migratory, sedentary birds.

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

Ecuadorian cacique - Quick Facts

  • Scientific name: Cacicus sclateri
  • Species author: (Dubois, 1887)
  • Synonyms/Protonym: Agelaeus sclateri A. J. C. Dubois, 1887
  • Family: Icteridae › Passeriformes › Aves › Chordata › Animalia
  • Vernacular names: English: Ecuadorian cacique, Chinese: 厄瓜多尔酋长鹂, French: Cassique d’Équateur, German: Trauerkassike, Spanish: Cacique ecuatoriano, Russian: Эквадорский чёрный кассик, Japanese: ヒメクロツリスドリ
  • Other names: Ecuadorian Black Cacique
  • Distribution:Colombia, Ecuador, Peru
  • Diet and feeding habits: insects, fruits, nectar
  • IUCN status listing: Least Concern (LC)

Conservation and survival

The global population size of the Ecuadorian cacique (Cacicus sclateri) has not been quantified. The overall population trend of the species is reported to be stable.

In most of its range, this species is reported to be fairly common (Stotz et al. 1996). The generation length is 4.6 years. Its distribution size is about 323,000

Ecosystem degradation, ecosystem conversion, deforestation, human activities in their range are the main threats that may endanger the survival of the species.

IUCN and CITES status

The Cacicus sclateri species 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 (LC)".

The CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) status is ‘Not Evaluated’ for the Ecuadorian cacique (Cacicus sclateri).
Taxonomy and scientific classification of Cacicus sclateri
Species:C. sclateri
Binomial name:Cacicus sclateri
IUCN status listing:
Least Concern
The Ecuadorian cacique (Cacicus sclateri) was earlier placed under the genus Archiplanus. The Cacicus sclateri is closely related to Selva cacique (Cacicus koepckeae).
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Ecuadorian cacique image source:
Image author: Alphonse Joseph Charles Dubois | License: Public domain
Link to Creative Commons copyright licenses

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