Mekong wagtail

Motacilla samveasnae

TAXONOMY

Motacilla samveasnae Duckworth et al., 2001, Cambodia. OTHER COMMON NAMES

French: Bergeronnette de Mekong; German: Mekongstelze; Spanish: Lavandera Mekong.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

6.7-6.9 in (17-17.5 cm). Black head, breast, and upperparts with white eye stripe, underside, and chin to throat.

DISTRIBUTION

Mekong River and tributaries in Cambodia and adjacent east Thailand and south Laos, possibly also Vietnam.

HABITAT

Breeding habitat is swift-flowing rivers at braided channels with rocks and bushes.

BEHAVIOR

Territorial when breeding. Possibly resident; almost no observations outside breeding season.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Insectivorous; often forages within emergent bushes, walking along branches.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Monogamous; breeds February through May, late in river's low-flow season. No other information available.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Should be considered Near Threatened. Although its population density is locally high, it has a very restricted range and is permanently at risk of extinction by habitat loss. The greatest threat is dam-building; flow-modifying events, even in other countries and far upstream of its known range, could drastically affect its habitat.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS None known. ♦

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