More birds slipping towards extinction


IUCN –The World Conservation Union, Gland, Switzerland (02.06.05) - The annual review of the state of the world’s birds by BirdLife International, one of IUCN’s Red List Consortium partners, shows that the total number considered to be threatened with extinction is now 1,212. If this is combined with the number of Near Threatened species, it gives a total of exactly 2,000 species in trouble – more than a fifth of the planet’s remaining 9,775 bird species.

Sidamo Lark (Heteromirafra sidamoensis) 2009 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species status: Critically Endangered.

Using the IUCN’s Red List Categories and Criteria, 179 species will now be classified as Critically Endangered, the highest level of threat. These include the Azores Bullfinch (Pyrrhula murina), one of Europe's rarest songbirds, which has been in decline since the early 1990s, with fewer than 300 individuals left.

Several species from Europe appear in the list for the first time, like European Roller (Coracias garrulous), Krüper’s Nuthatch (Sitta krueperi), and Red Kite (Milvus milvus). All three move from the Least Concern category to Near Threatened.

The new bird data will be processed and included in the 2005 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species which will be released later this year. For full details, see the BirdLife International press release.

For further information contact

Anna Knee or Andrew McMullin, IUCN Species Programme Communications Officers
Tel: +41 (0)22 999 0153

Work area: 
Red List
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