The Global Marine Species Assessment, a joint collaboration between IUCN’s Species Programme and Conservation International, is working to assess individual marine species for inclusion and publication on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
The IUCN Red List 2010 contains assessments for almost 56,000 species, of which only 5300, or 10%, are found in marine environments. Most marine species assessed so far include seabirds, marine mammals, sharks and rays, hard corals, seagrasses and increasingly reef fishes such as groupers, wrasses, and butterflyfishes.
Species data published on the IUCN Red List is useful for identifying regional and global conservation priorities for species. IUCN Red List Assessments are completed at workshops, where local, regional and international scientists are brought together to share data and apply the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria to the species concerned.
In November 2010, the first Oceania workshop was held in Nadi, Fiji to assess the status of damselfishes (Pomacentridae) both regionally and at the global level.
A second workshop was held in January 2011 in Koror, Palau to assess the status of Gobies and Cardinalfishes (Gobiidae and Apogonidae).
The workshops brought together the world’s leading experts on damselfishes, gobies and cardinalfishes and assessed approximately 500 species according to the IUCN Red List categories and criteria.