Asia

Updating Species Red List

Dr MM Feeroz filming and Dr Farid Ahsan observing during the mammals field visit of IUCN Red List Photo: © Md Ahasanul Islam

Project title: Updating Red List of Bangladesh

Location: Bangladesh

Duration: 2013 – 2016

Project background: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ is widely recognised as the most comprehensive, objective global approach for evaluating the conservation status of plant and animal species and their links to livelihoods. Its scientifically rigorous approach to determine risks of extinction has become a world standard.

As a global approach the IUCN Red List Assessments aim to reduce knowledge gaps of species conservation statuses and specifically seek 1) to establish a baseline from which to monitor the change in status of species; 2) to provide a global context for the establishment of conservation priorities at the local level; 3) to build capacity of country professionals in assessing the species status following global standard assessment criteria; and 4) to monitor, on a continuing basis, the status of a representative selection of species (as biodiversity indicators) that cover all the major ecosystems of the country.

In order to ensure high profile, standards and scientific integrity of the IUCN Red List, the assessment and regular updating process is clear, transparent, well documented and supported by the best scientific information available.

As part of the Bangladesh Forest Department project on Strengthening Regional Cooperation for Wildlife Protection (SRCWP) funded by the World Bank, IUCN aims to reduce the current knowledge gap of conservation and risk of existing species statuses by revising the previous Red List for Bangladesh using the most recent Red List assessment criteria version 3.1.

This current updating process is of significant importance due to the fact that it 1) will fill the existing 13 years’ assessment gap for bird, fish, mammal, amphibian and reptile species in Bangladesh and their conservation status, 2) adjust the Red List taking into account the global change in IUCN Red List assessment criteria from 2003, 3) will extended the Species Red List of Bangladesh by the two important animal groups Crustaceans and Butterflies, 4) will include the conservation status and risk of extinction status of several newly discovered species which are not listed yet, and 5) will enable through capacity building the relevant governmental agencies to better monitor the status of a representative selection of species that cover all the major ecosystems of the country. Coinciding with the 50 years anniversary of the IUCN Red List, the update in Bangladesh will contribute to the celebration of this event and further highlight its significance.

During the 30-month assessment process, members of the IUCN Global Species Programme, the IUCN Survival Commission, IUCN Bangladesh, the Bangladesh Forest Department officials, officials from the Department of Fisheries, national universities, research institutes, as well as scientists, conservationists, species specialists, and partner organisations and other governmental agencies will closely work together to ensure most accurate information and analysis of the most current status, trends and threats to wildlife species in Bangladesh.

Together, seven groups of wildlife species - Mammals, Reptiles, Amphibians, Birds, Freshwater Fishes, Crustacean and Butterflies, encompassing approximately 1,700 species, will be assessed or reassessed and their current status analysed and determined, following the most recent IUCN assessment criteria and guidelines. For this purpose a national committee of 19 members as well as seven Red List Assessment Groups (RAG), led by species specialists, have been formed. A series of workshops and trainings will be held to build up skills and ensure a sound and consistent assessment progress.

Objectives of the project: To reduce the knowledge gap of species status by revising the previous Red List of Bangladesh using recent Red List assessment criteria version. The specific objectives of the project are to:

  • Establish a baseline from which to monitor the change in status of species
  • Provide a global context for the establishment of conservation priorities at the local level
  • Capacity building of the country professionals in assessing the species status following global standard assessment criteria
  • Monitor, on a continuing basis, the status of a representative selection of species (as biodiversity indicators) that cover all the major ecosystems of the country

Expected outputs:

  • The current conservation status of all targeted species of seven selected animal groups has been assessed and published in Red List Books
  • Species Red Lists for Butterflies and Crustaceans have been developed as a baseline
  • Particularly wildlife species at the risk of extinction have been identified and that information has been communicated and published
  • Knowledge gaps are identified and communicated
  • Capacities of in-country professionals on assessing and updating species statuses have been built up and a network of national and international experts established

Donor: The World Bank

Partners: Strengthening Regional Cooperation for Wildlife Protection (SRCWP) of Bangladesh Forest Department

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