As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Saturday 26 July 2014

One tenth of bird species have been flying under the conservation radar

The first of a two-part comprehensive taxonomic review, carried out by Birdlife international on behalf of the IUCN, has led to the recognition of 361 new species of non-passerine birds, which were previously treated as ‘races’ of other forms.

Somali ostrich
This brings the total number of non-passerine birds – such as birds of prey, seabirds, waterbirds and owls – to 4,472 different species and worryingly means that previous classifications have undersold avian diversity at the species level by more than 10 per cent.

“Put another way, one tenth of the world’s bird species have been flying below the conservation radar,” said Dr Stuart Butchart, BirdLife’s Head of Science.

This new data has thrown fresh light on the conservation status on different species and has led to a quarter of the 361 new species being added to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species - making them urgent priorities for conservation action.

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