Paluman Ǻ’paka’ and Fache’: Rarely seen on Guam

Scientific Name: Gallicolumba xanthonura xanthonura (Family COLUMBIDAE)

Common Name: White Throated Ground Dove

CHamoru Name: male, Paluman Ǻ’paka’; female, Paluman Fache’

Habitat and Natural History: This dove lives in limestone forests and is secretive. It feeds on fruit, seeds and flowers. It nests high in trees, and both parents tend the nest. Males are more often seen then females and are very territorial.

Description: Males have white heads and breasts with a chocolate brown body. Females are shades of brown with no white.

Range: Endemic to Yap; Guam; Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (Rota and north to Saipan)

Current Status: Extirpated from Guam with the last resident bird seen in 1987. It is still occasionally observed on Guam but believed to be a vagrant from Rota.

Threats: Habitat destruction, predation by brown treesnakes.

By Gretchen R. Grimm, MS