Galapagos Species Database

The Galapagos Species Database shares the information about the species from our Natural History Collections.

Mimus parvulus Gould, 1837

Cucuve de Galápagos, Galapagos Mockingbird

Mimus parvulus Gould, 1837, Isabela Island, Galapagos. Photo: Paul McFarling, CDF, 2007.
Mimus parvulus Gould, 1837, Isabela Island, Galapagos. Photo: Paul McFarling, CDF, 2007.

Threats Threats seem to be mainly from black rats, to a less extent from cats, from parasites and from diseases. Mockingbirds are affected by avian pox virus and the parasitic fly Philornis. Pox virus increases mortality of juveniles after fledgling.










Taxon category: Accepted

Syn.: Orpheus parvulus Gould, 1837; Nesomimus parvulus Gould, 1837, Nesomimus parvulus parvulus Gould, 1837; Nesomimus parvulus barringtoni Rothschild, 1898 , Nesomimus parvulus blindloei Ridgway, 1894; Nesomimus parvulus personatus Ridgway, 1890; Nesomimus parvulus wenmani Swarth; Nesomimus parvulus hulli Rothschild; 1898; Nesomimus parvulus bauri Ridgway, 1894

Taxon origin: Endemic


Least concern


Preference for an altitude zone in Galapagos: Coastal zone - transition zone

Habitat preferences: Inhabits arid open lowland scrub, scrubby woodland with scattered trees (Bursera), arborescent cacti (Opuntia) and deciduous forest but can also be found in low numbers in the agricultural area and humid Scalesia forest.

Feeding type: Polyphagous

arthropods, lizards, fruits, peck on iguanas for ticks.

Feeding preferences: Feeding on ground-dwelling arthropods such as centipedes, crabs and lizards, but also observed eating a wide variety of fleshy fruits (a third of its diet). Seeds in faeces make it a possible disperser of Galápagos and introduced plants. Occasionally peck on iguanas for ticks. Observed drinking blood from marine and land iguanas on Santa Fe.

Trophic role: Omnivorous

Reproductive biology: Pairing is mostly monogamous but polygyny also occurs. They generally build nests in cactus or acacia trees. Mockingbirds are permanently territorial with groups dominated by an alpha male and defended cooperatively although this behaviour varies among islands. Groups of 2 to >20 individuals that can include several breeding pairs defend territories with complex dominance relationships within the groups. Some adults - who may or may not breed - are helpers and contribute to rearing the youngs. They are more likely to help closely related chicks.

Distribution origin: In common with all other Mimus, this species is closely related to species from North America and the Caribbean, rather than species from South America, indicating long distance dispersal.


Map of specimen collection localities or observation records for this species in our collections database.

Distribution: Present on Santa Cruz, Santa Fe, Santiago, Isabela, Fernandina, Pinta, Marchena, Genovesa, Darwin, Wolf Island. Except on Pinzón where there are only 2 old sightings (1906 and 1968).


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