Friday, November 21, 2008

Rare Birds Yearbook 2009 - News hot from the conservation frontline

The second volume of this innovative and 'must have' annual publication has just been released. The brainchild of Erik Hirschfeld, £4 of each book sold goes to bird conservation.

To order your copy, visit the Rare Birds Yearbook web site.

The meat of the book is an overview of the current status of the 190 bird species rated as 'Critically Endangered'. There are 130 new photographs and a collection of essays including a feature on the successful reintroduction programs for California Condor.

The fortunes of the World's rarest birds have been mixed to say the least. Click here for a summary of status changes. Eight species have been upgraded to 'Critically Endangered' on the IUCN Red List scale, one step below the dreaded 'Ex' ratings.
These are:
Tristan Albatross (Diomedea dabbenena)
Spoon-billed Sandpiper (Eurynorhynchus pygmeus)
Tachira Antpitta (Grallaria chthonia)
Reunion Cuckooshrike Coracina newtoni)
Mariana Crow (Corvus kubaryi)
Floreana Mockingbird (Nesomimus trifasciatus)
Akekee (Loxops caeruleirostris)
Gough Bunting (Rowettia goughensis)

A glimmer of hope is the fact that 6 species have been downgraded from 'Critically Endangered':

Gorgeted Wood-quail (Odontophorus strophium) [now only 'Endangered']
Marquesan Imperial Pigeon (Ducula galeata) [now only 'Endangered']
Purple-backed Sunbeam (Aglaeactis aliciae) [now only 'Endangered']
Gurney’s Pitta (Pitta gurneyi) [now only 'Endangered']
Rondonia Bushbird (Clytoctantes atrogularis) [now only 'Vulnerable']
Somali Thrush (Turdus ludoviciae) [now only 'Vulnerable']
Title: Rare Birds Yearbook 2009
Author: Erik Hirschfeld
Publisher: MagDig Media Ltd.
Publication date: 14 November 2008
Softcover, numerous color photographs & diagrams, 276pgs.
ISBN 978-0-9552607-5-9
Retail price: £18.95 (UK)

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