Four species of the avian family Cracidae were studied in the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve in north-eastern Peru. These large-bodied birds are an important source of protein for local communities on the periphery of the reserve. An estimated 425 kg of Cracidae biomass were harvested over a 1-year period by three communities. Pipile cumanensis was the most frequently hunted bird, both in terms of individuals hunted and biomass extracted. Mitu tuberosa and Penelope jaquacu also made up a substantial amount of the biomass extracted, but were hunted less frequently. Densities of all species of Cracidae within 5 km of the villages were substantially lower than in the interior of the reserve. Our results suggest that M. tuberosa and P. cumanensis are overharvested and P. jaquacu and Ortalis guttata are harvested within the maximum estimated sustainable levels. In this study hunting grounds were along waterways and adjacent to protected populations, which created a source-sink arrangement. If sink areas are overhunted, the unhunted populations inland of the waterways could be acting as source populations that replenish overhunted areas.