IUIUCNCN  IUCNのレッドリスト2015.4が発表されました。

 

 

NEWS RELEASE

Embargoeduntil: 00:01 GMT 19 November 2015

New assessment highlights climate change as most serious threat to polar bear survival - IUCN Red List

Gland, Switzerland, 19 November 2015 (IUCN) – A global re-assessment of polar bears highlights loss of sea ice habitat due to climate warming as the single most important threat to the long-term survival of the species, according to the latest update of The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ released today by IUCN, International Union for Conservation of Nature.

This update also highlights habitat degradation as a main threat to many fungus species and over-fishing as the key driver of decline in marine bony fish. The IUCN Red List now includes 79,837 assessed species, of which 23,250are threatened with extinction.

The re-assessment of the polar bear (Ursus maritimus ) used the most current sea ice and sub-population data, along with computer simulation and statistical models, to project potential changes in the size of polar bear sub-populations due to changes in sea ice. It is the most comprehensive assessment of this data to date. The results show that there is a high probability that the global polar bear population will decline by more than 30% over the next 35 to 40 years. The assessment supports the current Vulnerable status of the polar bear on The IUCN Red List.

Based on the latest, most robust science, this assessment provides evidence that climate change will continue to seriously threaten polar bear survival in the future,” says Inger Andersen, IUCN Director General. “Climate change impacts go far beyond this iconic species, and present a threat our planet has never faced before. Governments meeting at the climate summit in Paris later this month will need to go all out to strike a deal strong enough to confront this unprecedented challenge.”

Recent studies show that the loss of Arctic sea ice has progressed faster than most climate models had predicted, with September sea ice extent declining at a linear rate of 14% per decade from 1979 through 2011. As polar bears rely on sea ice to access their prey, an annual ice-free period of five months or more will cause extended fasting for the species, which is likely to lead to increased reproductive failure and starvation in some areas. According to recent sea ice projections, large regions of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago will be ice free for more than five months by the late 21st century; and in other parts of the Arctic, the five-month ice-free threshold may be reached by the middle of the 21st century. Warming Arctic temperatures could also reduce habitat and increase the incidence of disease for prey species such as ice seals, placing the polar bear at further risk.

Polar bears are important to the livelihoods of Indigenous Peoples and, as apex predators, are essential to maintaining ecosystem balance in the Arctic region. Along with sea ice loss, other potential threats to the species include pollution, resource exploration and habitat change due to development. Oil development in the Arctic, for example, poses a wide range of threats, from oil spills to increased human-bear interaction.

Whilst sea ice loss is the major threat to polar bears, the full range of current and potential threats must be considered in polar bear management plans,” says Dag Vongraven, Chair of IUCN’s Species Survival Commission’s (SSC) Polar Bear Specialist Group.It is encouraging that polar bear range states have recently agreed on a Circumpolar Action Plan – the first global conservation strategy to strive for the long-term persistence of polar bears in the wild. IUCN is actively working with those countries, providing scientific data and advice to help implement the agreed plan in the most efficient and cohesive way possible. We truly hope that the action plan will make a difference for polar bear conservation.”

Twenty-nine fungi have been assessed in this update, more than doubling the number of fungi on The IUCN Red List. The main threats affecting the species are habitat loss and degradation, mostly from changing land use practices. The colourful Leptonia carnea, which has been listed as Vulnerable, is confined to the coastal redwood forest of California, USA. Changes in the Californian climate – increased droughts and reduced occurrence of fog – are impacting the habitat. Continued logging of the redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) which is listed as Endangered, is another major threat to the fungus.

Fungi provide essential ecosystem services which support animals and plants. They have a symbiotic relationship with 80% of all plants and form a crucial part of the digestive system of ruminants such as sheep and cows. Fungi are also extremely important to humans as medicine and food. The antibiotic Penicillin was derived from the fungus Penicillium, and today most antibiotics and statins (commonly used to lower blood cholesterol), are fungal in origin. Fungi are also used to make bread, beer, wine, cheese and many other foods.

This IUCN Red List update also reveals that the degradation of sensitive coastal habitats, pollution, overexploitation and destructive fishing practices are putting many marine bony fishes at risk of extinction in the East Central Atlantic and Greater Caribbean regions with the invasive lionfish placing further pressure in the Caribbean The global assessment of the 1,400 marine bony fishes including both nearshore fishes and deep-sea fishes of the Eastern Central Atlantic – covering the area from Mauritania to Angola – shows that 3% are threatened with extinction. The roundnose grenadier (Coryphaenoides rupestris), is listed as Critically Endangered due to overexploitation. In the Caribbean, 1,340 species were assessed, and of these 5% are threatened with extinction, including the golden tilefish (Lopholatilus chamaeleonticeps) which is listed as Endangered. An important commercial fishery species, it is the largest species of tilefish and can reach up to 1.25 metres in length. Its population has declined by 66% over the last 48 years due to over-fishing.

Marine bony fishes are the largest group of fish and are both ecologically and economically important. The loss of these species would pose a serious threat to the food security and livelihoods of more than 340 million people in these regions. With the human population expected to double in the next 20 to 25 years, this new data will be used to guide fisheries management and conservation priorities in the regions, including the identification of priority sites for conservation action.

These assessments are the first of their kind, providing comprehensive baseline information within a specified region, which is critical for the designation and improved management of marine protected areas and threatened marine species,” says Kent Carpenter, Manager of IUCN’s Marine Biodiversity Unit. “The data should also lead to the development of more effective initiatives to improve national and regional fisheries management to maximise conservation benefits.”

A total of 24 newly assessed Critically Endangered species are highlighted as being possibly extinct, primarily due to threats from invasive species and habitat destruction.Haha (Cyanea kolekoleensis), a plant species native to the island of Kauai, Hawaiʻi, is listed as Critically Endangered/(Possibly Extinct). Its habitat is threatened by pigs and several invasive plant species, and there have been no recorded sightings since 1998. Eleven orchid species found only in Madagascar have been listed as Critically Endangered/(Possibly Extinct) including Bulbophyllum tampoketsens, which is threatened due to illegal collection and deforestation. Arico water frog (Telmatobius pefauri) is listed as Critically Endangered/(Possibly Extinct) because it has not been seen since 1976. This frog is threatened by water extraction for human use and for cattle ranching; it may also be affected by cattle trampling the stream habitats according to the experts.

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For moreinformation or interviewspleasecontact:

Ewa Magiera, IUCNMediaRelations, m +41 76 505 33 78, e-mail

LynneLabanne, IUCNGlobalSpeciesProgramme,IUCN, m +41 79 527 7221, e-mail

IUCN Red List Partner quotes

“The importance of climate change as a threat to iconic species on the IUCN Red List is further underlined by a ground-breaking report to be released shortly by BirdLife International and the National Audubon Society ahead of the UNFCCC meeting on climate change in Paris,” says Stuart Butchart, Head of Science Birdlife International. “The messengers: what birds tell us about threats from climate change and solutions for nature and people highlights how climate change poses major risks to the survival of many bird species, but also illustrates the solutions that BirdLife Partners, IUCN and others are implementing to help species adapt, and the importance of nature-based solutions for people.”

“The most recent Red List update highlights primary threats of climate change in polar bears, habitat loss for fungi, overexploitation for marine fish, and invasive species for a Possibly Extinct plant in Hawai’i, says Dr. Thomas E. Lacher, Jr., Texas A&M University.  “The reality, however, is that all these threats act simultaneously on species, often greatly reinforcing the overall risk of extinction. Although we can isolate primary threats, it is important to consider all possible threats in designing effective conservation actions. The Red List does just that be presenting in the assessments information on all active threats, so that governments and organizations have the necessary data to have comprehensive recovery plans.”

Notesto editors

The IUCNRedListof ThreatenedSpecies™contributes to theachievement of Target12of the2011 to 2020Strategic PlanforBiodiversity.Target 12: By 2020 the extinction of known threatened species has been prevented and their conservation status, particularly of those most in decline, has been improved and sustained.


Globalfigures forthe2015-4 IUCNRedList of ThreatenedSpecies:

TOTAL SPECIES ASSESSED = 79,837

(Total threatened species = 23,250)

Extinct= 834

Extinct in theWild = 69

CriticallyEndangered = 4,898

Endangered = 7,323

Vulnerable = 11,029

Near Threatened = 5,204

Lower Risk/conservationdependent = 238 (thisisanoldcategorythatisgradually beingphasedoutof TheIUCNRedList)

LeastConcern = 37,224

Data Deficient = 13,018

The figures presented above are only for those species that have been assessed for The IUCN Red List to date. Although not all of the world’s species have been assessed, The IUCN Red List provides a useful snapshot of what is happening to species today and highlights the urgent need for conservation action. Relative percentages for threatened species cannot be provided for many taxonomic groups on The IUCN Red List because they have not been comprehensively assessed. For many of these groups, assessment efforts have focussed on threatened species; therefore, the percentage of threatened species for these groups would be heavily biased.

For those groups that have been comprehensively assessed, the percentage of threatened species can be calculated, but the actual number of threatened species is often uncertain because it is not known whether Data Deficient (DD) species are actually threatened or not. Therefore, the percentages presented above provide the best estimate of extinction risk for those groups that have been comprehensively assessed (excluding Extinct species), based on the assumption that Data Deficient species are equally threatened as data sufficient species. In other words, this is a mid-point figure within a range from x% threatened species (if all DD species are not threatened) to y% threatened species (if all DD species are threatened). Available evidence indicates that this is a best estimate.

The IUCNRedListthreat categoriesareas follows, in descendingorderofthreat:

Extinctor Extinctin the Wild

Critically Endangered, Endangered andVulnerable:species threatened withglobalextinction.

Near Threatened: species closeto thethreatenedthresholds orthatwouldbethreatenedwithoutongoingspecific conservationmeasures.

Least Concern: speciesevaluated with a lower risk of extinction.

Data Deficient:noassessmentbecauseof insufficient data.

Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct):thisis nota new IUCN Red List category,but is a flagdeveloped to identifythoseCriticallyEndangeredspecies that are in all probability already Extinctbut forwhichconfirmation is required; forexample,through more extensivesurveysbeingcarriedoutandfailing to findany individuals.

Highlightsfrom the 2015-4update

Beloware a fewexamplesof species that havebeenuplisted, downlistedorappearforthefirst time onTheIUCNRedList.

Examples of other speciesthathavebeenadded in thisupdate

Regional assessments of the Persian Gulf marine bony fishes

The extinction risk of 457 marine bony fishes in the Persian Gulf was regionally assessed using the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria at the regional level. Results from these regional assessments indicate that 8.5% of marine bony fishes in the Persian Gulf are considered threatened. However, the proportion of threatened species is uncertain given the number of Data Deficient species, and could lie between 6.8% (if none of the Data Deficient species were threatened) to 26.7% (if all of the Data Deficient species were threatened). Anthropogenic and environmental extremes are constant threats to marine bony fishes in the Persian Gulf. The newly added regional assessments will transform the current level of knowledge on these species and provide scientists and conservation managers across the region with the information and tools they need to develop more effective marine conservation priorities. However, cross-boundary collaboration between Persian Gulf States is necessary in order for effective management and protection of the marine bony fishes and their associated habitats within this globally important region.

Regional assessments of marine bony shorefishes of the Gulf of Mexico

Regional extinction risk was assessed for 919 species of marine bony shorefishes in the Gulf of Mexico using the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria at the Regional level. Results from this regional assessment show that 4.3% of these species are considered threatened in the Gulf of Mexico region, including a number of large-bodied commercial species (this is the best estimate within the range of 3.8 to14.5% threatened, if the number if DD species is taken into consideration). Forty six of these shorefishes are endemic to this region, and 26% of these endemic species are listed as globally threatened. Besides threats from overexploitation and coastal development, the potential for catastrophic events such as oil spills haunts the Gulf of Mexico marine ecoregion. This new data now establishes a baseline of the region-wide conservation status of species and thus will improve the effectiveness of restoration and management efforts.

Freshwater fishes

Kissing loach (Parabotia curtus), a freshwater fish from Japan, is under extreme threat from a development for a football stadium that is due to start soon.

Fungi

Agaricus pattersoniae, listed as Vulnerable, is endemic to coastal central California (USA). It lives alongside the occurring in Monterey cypress (Cuppressus macrocarpa) which is also listed as Vulnerable. The fungus needs an undisturbed layer of old pine needles to survive. Habitat destruction for urban development and increasing fire frequency are the main threats.

Plants for People

Utleria salicifolia, a medicinal plant, has been listed as Vulnerable. It is used for treating asthma and skin diseases. Threatened by unregulated collection, artificial forest fire and habitat degradation.

Atlas daisy (Anacyclus pyrethrum) listed as Vulnerable is found in Morocco.  It is used to treat many diseases and conditions including speech disorders, laryngitis, sickle cell anaemia, epilepsy and depression. Premature exploitation and bad collection practices of the wild species often destroy the entire plant, preventing it from growing again.

Quercus acutifolia, listed as Vulnerable, is a species of oak which is used locally as firewood and charcoal, as well as for tools, fence posts, and small-scale building and construction materials. The bark can be used medicinally for the treatment of burns. Climate change poses a major threat. A recent study (Gomez-Mendoza and Arriaga 2007) identified the species as highly vulnerable to range contractions under multiple climate scenarios, projecting declines in distribution of up to 41% under projections by 2050.

Rediscovered species

Mahé Boulder Cricket (Phalangacris alluaudi) was previously listed as a Possibly Extinct species. However, it was rediscovered in 2014 and is now listed as Critically Endangered.

Examples of other species that have been uplisted (conservation status is worse)

Atacama toad (Rhinella atacamensis) has been uplisted from Least Concern to Vulnerable. Endemic to Chile, this toad has undergone an estimated 35 to 40% decline over the past 10 years due to habitat loss and degradation, which has increased in recent years. Extensive droughts and water pollution in rivers threaten the future of this species. Abstraction of surface water (both for human consumption and for agricultural use), mining, agriculture, livestock farming and timber plantations are also affecting it.

Spotted fanaloka (Fossa fossana) has been uplisted from Near Threatened to Vulnerable. Endemic to Madagascar, this is a nocturnal species, which is restricted to primary forest areas. It is threatened by deforestation for cultivated land, and by forest degradation through selective logging and charcoal production. It is also threatened by hunting.

Geometric tortoise (Psammobates geometricus) has been uplisted from Endangered to Critically Endangered. Endemic to the Western Cape, South Africa, this tortoise’s range has reduced dramatically. It has also undergone massive population declines: in 1992, the largest subpopulation was estimated to contain between 1,500 and 3,400 tortoises, but in 2012, the entire global population was estimated to be between 700 and 800. Over 90% of its original habitat has been irreversibly converted to agriculture, and populations in remaining habitat have suffered catastrophic declines from fire-induced mortality, with little indication of population recovery.

Examples of other species that have been downlisted (conservation status is better)

Hamilton’s Frog (Leiopelma hamiltoni) has been downlisted from Endangered to Vulnerable. The only naturally occurring population is confined to a single rock tumble on Stephens Island (New Zealand). The total population size was previously estimated to be less than 300 mature animals. Since then, a translocated subpopulation has been successfully established on Nukuwaiata Island site. Therefore, the total population size is now estimated to be between 300 to 800 individuals, including the subpopulation in its original natural range and the translocated subpopulation, and appears to be increasing.

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About TheIUCNRedList of ThreatenedSpecies™

The IUCNRedList of ThreatenedSpecies™(orThe IUCNRedList)is an invaluable resource to guide conservation action and policy decisions. It is a healthcheck forourplanet – a Barometerof Life. It is theworld’s most comprehensiveinformationsourceontheglobalconservationstatus of plant, animalandfungispecies. It is basedonanobjectivesystem forassessingtheriskofextinctionof a species shouldnoconservationactionbetaken.

Speciesare assigned to oneof eight categories of threat basedon whethertheymeet criterialinked to populationtrend, populationsizeandstructureandgeographicrange. SpecieslistedasCriticallyEndangered, EndangeredorVulnerablearecollectivelydescribedas ‘threatened’.

The IUCNRedListisnotjust a registerofnames andassociatedthreatcategories. It is a richcompendiumof informationon thethreats to thespecies,theirecologicalrequirements,wheretheylive,andinformationonconservationactions that can be used to reduceorpreventextinctions.TheIUCNRedListis a joint effort betweenIUCNand its SpeciesSurvivalCommission,workingwithits IUCNRedList partnersBirdLifeInternational; BotanicGardens ConservationInternational;ConservationInternational;NatureServe; Microsoft; RoyalBotanic Gardens, Kew;SapienzaUniversity of Rome;TexasA&M University;Wildscreen;andZoological Society of London.www.iucnredlist.orghttps://www.facebook.com/iucn.red.list  https://twitter.com/IUCNRedListhttp://support.iucnredlist.org/

About IUCN

IUCN, International Union for Conservation of Nature, helps the world find pragmatic solutions to our most pressing environment and development challenges.  IUCN’s work focusses on valuing and conserving nature, ensuring effective and equitable governance of its use, and deploying nature-based solutions to global challenges in climate, food and development. IUCN supports scientific research, manages field projects all over the world, and brings governments, NGOs, the UN and companies together to develop policy, laws and best practice. IUCN is the world’s oldest and largest global environmental organisation, with almost 1,300 government and NGO Members and more than 15,000 volunteer experts in 185 countries. IUCN’s work is supported by almost 1,000 staff in 45 offices and hundreds of partners in public, NGO and private sectors around the world.  www.iucn.org

About theSpeciesSurvival Commission

The SpeciesSurvivalCommission (SSC)is thelargest of IUCN’s six volunteercommissionswith a global membershipof around7,500experts. SSC advises IUCNanditsmembersonthe widerangeoftechnical andscientific aspects of species conservation, andisdedicated to securing a futureforbiodiversity. SSC has significant inputintotheinternational agreementsdealingwithbiodiversity conservation.

About BirdLife

BirdLifeInternationalis theworld’slargestnatureconservationPartnership. Togetherweare120BirdLifePartnersworldwide

onepercountryandgrowing,withalmost11 million supporters,7,000localconservationgroupsand 7,400staff. Findout more atwww.birdlife.org / www.facebook.com/BirdLifeInternational

About BotanicGardensConservationInternational

BGCI is aninternationalorganisationthat exists to ensuretheworld-wideconservationof threatenedplants, thecontinuedexistenceof whichareintrinsicallylinked to global issuesincludingpoverty,humanwell-beingandclimatechange. BGCI representsover700 membersmostlybotanic gardens – in 118countries.Weaim to supportandempowerourmembers andthewiderconservationcommunity so that theirknowledgeandexpertise can beapplied to reversingthethreatofextinctioncrisis facingonethirdofallplants. http://www.bgci.org

About ConservationInternational(CI)

Building upon a strongfoundationof science, partnershipandfielddemonstration, CIempowerssocieties to responsibly andsustainablycarefornature,ourglobalbiodiversity, forthelongterm well-beingofpeople.Founded in 1987andmarkingits 25thanniversary in 2012,CI hasheadquarters in theWashingtonDCarea,and900employeesworking in nearly 30countriesonfourcontinents,plus1,000+partnersaroundtheworld.Formoreinformation,pleasevisitus at www.conservation.org,orfollowuson   Facebook orTwitter.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975,Microsoft (Nasdaq“MSFT”)is theworldwideleader in software, services andsolutions thathelppeopleandbusinesses realizetheirfullpotential.http://www.microsoft.com

About NatureServe

NatureServe is a non-profit conservationorganisationdedicated to providingthescientificbasisforeffectiveconservationaction.Throughitsnetworkof 82naturalheritageprogrammesandconservationdatacentres in theUnitedStates,Canada, andLatinAmerica, NatureServeprovides a uniquebodyofdetailedscientific informationandconservationbiodiversity expertiseabout theplants,animals, andecosystemsof theAmericas. www.natureserve.org

About theRoyalBotanicGardens,Kew

The RoyalBotanic Gardens, Kewis a world-famous scientificorganisation, internationallyrespectedfor its outstandinglivingcollectionofplants andworld-classHerbariumaswellasitsscientificexpertise in plant diversity, conservationandsustainable development in theUK andaroundtheworld.KewGardens is a majorinternationalvisitorattraction. Itslandscaped132hectares andRBGKew’s country estate,Wakehurst Place, attractnearly two millionvisitors every year.Kewwas made a UNESCO World HeritageSite in July 2003andcelebratedits250thanniversary in 2009.Wakehurst Place is home to Kew'sMillenniumSeedBank, thelargestwildplant seedbank in theworld.RBGKewanditspartnershavecollectedandconservedseedfrom10 percent ofthe world'swildfloweringplantspecies(c.30,000species). Theaim is toconserve25 percent by 2020, anditsenormouspotential for futureconservation can onlybefulfilledwiththesupportof thepublic andotherfunders.www.kew.org

About SapienzaUniversity of Rome

With over700years ofhistory and145,000students, Sapienza is thelargest University in Europe, thesecond in theworld after El Cairo, a city withinthecity. TheUniversity includes 11facultiesand67departments. In Sapienzathereareover4,500professors, and5,000administrativeandtechnical staff. Sapienzaoffers a widechoiceof coursesincluding300 degreeprogrammes and200 specializedqualifications. Students coming fromotherregionsareover30,000andtheforeignstudentsareover7,000. Sapienza plansandcarriesout important scientificinvestigations in almost alldisciplines,achievinghigh-standardresults bothon a national andonaninternationallevel. ProfessorLuigiFratihasbeentheRectorof SapienzaUniversity sinceNovember2008. http://www.uniroma1.it/

About TexasA&MUniversity

Fromhumblebeginnings in 1876asTexas' firstpublic institutionof higherlearning, to a bustling5,200-acrecampus with a nationally recognizedfaculty, Texas A&M Universityisoneof a selectfewuniversities withland-grant, sea-grantandspace-grantdesignations. With anenrolmentofabout half men andhalf women,25percent of thefreshmanclass arethefirst in theirfamily to attendcollege. Here,39,000-plusundergraduatesand more than9,400graduatestudentshaveaccess to world-classresearchprogramsandaward-winningfaculty. TexasA&M hastwobranchcampuses,one in Galveston, Texas, andone in theMiddleEasterncountry ofQatar. Thisresearch-intensiveflagshipuniversitywith10collegeswasrecentlyrankedfirst in thenationby Smart Money magazinefor"pay-back ratio"(whatgraduatesearncompared to thecostof theireducation). The2011U.S. News and World Report ranked TexasA&M secondnationally in their"Great Schools,Great Prices" category amongpublicuniversities and22ndoverall. Many degreeprogrammes areranked amongthetop10 in the country.www.tamu.edu

AboutWildscreen

Wildscreen isanaward-winingwildlifeconservationcharity that sharesawe-inspiringimagesoflifeonEarth to empower conservationaroundtheworld.Itachieves its missionthroughitsfourinterconnectedinitiatives - WildscreenArkive, WildscreenExchange.WildscreenFestivalsandWildscreenOutreach.Founded in 1982,Wildscreeninspiresphotographers andfilmmakers to take themost vitalimages,uses thoseimages to inspirethe nextgenerationof conservationistsonline and in theircommunities,and arms conservationorganisationsaroundtheworldwiththem so theirall-important stories have thebest chanceof beingseenandheard.http://www.wildscreen.org

About theZoological Society of London(ZSL)

 

Founded in 1826, theZoological Society ofLondon(ZSL)isaninternational scientific, conservationandeducationalcharity: the key roleis theconservationof animalsandtheirhabitats.TheSociety runsZSLLondonZooandZSLWhipsnadeZoo, carriesoutscientificresearchattheInstituteof Zoology andisactively involved in fieldconservation in over50countries worldwide.www.zsl.org

 

NEWS RELEASE

Ewa Magiera, IUCNMediaRelations, m +41 76 505 33 78, e-mail

LynneLabanne, IUCNGlobalSpeciesProgramme, m +41 79 527 72 21, e-mail

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Download summary statistics here

Embargoeduntil: 00:01 GMT 19 November 2015

New assessment highlights climate change as most serious threat to polar bear survival - IUCN Red List

Gland, Switzerland, 19 November 2015 (IUCN) – A global re-assessment of polar bears highlights loss of sea ice habitat due to climate warming as the single most important threat to the long-term survival of the species, according to the latest update of The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ released today by IUCN, International Union for Conservation of Nature.

This update also highlights habitat degradation as a main threat to many fungus species and over-fishing as the key driver of decline in marine bony fish. The IUCN Red List now includes 79,837 assessed species, of which 23,250are threatened with extinction.

The re-assessment of the polar bear (Ursus maritimus ) used the most current sea ice and sub-population data, along with computer simulation and statistical models, to project potential changes in the size of polar bear sub-populations due to changes in sea ice. It is the most comprehensive assessment of this data to date. The results show that there is a high probability that the global polar bear population will decline by more than 30% over the next 35 to 40 years. The assessment supports the current Vulnerable status of the polar bear on The IUCN Red List.

Based on the latest, most robust science, this assessment provides evidence that climate change will continue to seriously threaten polar bear survival in the future,” says Inger Andersen, IUCN Director General. “Climate change impacts go far beyond this iconic species, and present a threat our planet has never faced before. Governments meeting at the climate summit in Paris later this month will need to go all out to strike a deal strong enough to confront this unprecedented challenge.”

Recent studies show that the loss of Arctic sea ice has progressed faster than most climate models had predicted, with September sea ice extent declining at a linear rate of 14% per decade from 1979 through 2011. As polar bears rely on sea ice to access their prey, an annual ice-free period of five months or more will cause extended fasting for the species, which is likely to lead to increased reproductive failure and starvation in some areas. According to recent sea ice projections, large regions of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago will be ice free for more than five months by the late 21st century; and in other parts of the Arctic, the five-month ice-free threshold may be reached by the middle of the 21st century. Warming Arctic temperatures could also reduce habitat and increase the incidence of disease for prey species such as ice seals, placing the polar bear at further risk.

Polar bears are important to the livelihoods of Indigenous Peoples and, as apex predators, are essential to maintaining ecosystem balance in the Arctic region. Along with sea ice loss, other potential threats to the species include pollution, resource exploration and habitat change due to development. Oil development in the Arctic, for example, poses a wide range of threats, from oil spills to increased human-bear interaction.

Whilst sea ice loss is the major threat to polar bears, the full range of current and potential threats must be considered in polar bear management plans,” says Dag Vongraven, Chair of IUCN’s Species Survival Commission’s (SSC) Polar Bear Specialist Group.It is encouraging that polar bear range states have recently agreed on a Circumpolar Action Plan – the first global conservation strategy to strive for the long-term persistence of polar bears in the wild. IUCN is actively working with those countries, providing scientific data and advice to help implement the agreed plan in the most efficient and cohesive way possible. We truly hope that the action plan will make a difference for polar bear conservation.”

Twenty-nine fungi have been assessed in this update, more than doubling the number of fungi on The IUCN Red List. The main threats affecting the species are habitat loss and degradation, mostly from changing land use practices. The colourful Leptonia carnea, which has been listed as Vulnerable, is confined to the coastal redwood forest of California, USA. Changes in the Californian climate – increased droughts and reduced occurrence of fog – are impacting the habitat. Continued logging of the redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) which is listed as Endangered, is another major threat to the fungus.

Fungi provide essential ecosystem services which support animals and plants. They have a symbiotic relationship with 80% of all plants and form a crucial part of the digestive system of ruminants such as sheep and cows. Fungi are also extremely important to humans as medicine and food. The antibiotic Penicillin was derived from the fungus Penicillium, and today most antibiotics and statins (commonly used to lower blood cholesterol), are fungal in origin. Fungi are also used to make bread, beer, wine, cheese and many other foods.

This IUCN Red List update also reveals that the degradation of sensitive coastal habitats, pollution, overexploitation and destructive fishing practices are putting many marine bony fishes at risk of extinction in the East Central Atlantic and Greater Caribbean regions with the invasive lionfish placing further pressure in the Caribbean The global assessment of the 1,400 marine bony fishes including both nearshore fishes and deep-sea fishes of the Eastern Central Atlantic – covering the area from Mauritania to Angola – shows that 3% are threatened with extinction. The roundnose grenadier (Coryphaenoides rupestris), is listed as Critically Endangered due to overexploitation. In the Caribbean, 1,340 species were assessed, and of these 5% are threatened with extinction, including the golden tilefish (Lopholatilus chamaeleonticeps) which is listed as Endangered. An important commercial fishery species, it is the largest species of tilefish and can reach up to 1.25 metres in length. Its population has declined by 66% over the last 48 years due to over-fishing.

Marine bony fishes are the largest group of fish and are both ecologically and economically important. The loss of these species would pose a serious threat to the food security and livelihoods of more than 340 million people in these regions. With the human population expected to double in the next 20 to 25 years, this new data will be used to guide fisheries management and conservation priorities in the regions, including the identification of priority sites for conservation action.

These assessments are the first of their kind, providing comprehensive baseline information within a specified region, which is critical for the designation and improved management of marine protected areas and threatened marine species,” says Kent Carpenter, Manager of IUCN’s Marine Biodiversity Unit. “The data should also lead to the development of more effective initiatives to improve national and regional fisheries management to maximise conservation benefits.”

A total of 24 newly assessed Critically Endangered species are highlighted as being possibly extinct, primarily due to threats from invasive species and habitat destruction.Haha (Cyanea kolekoleensis), a plant species native to the island of Kauai, Hawaiʻi, is listed as Critically Endangered/(Possibly Extinct). Its habitat is threatened by pigs and several invasive plant species, and there have been no recorded sightings since 1998. Eleven orchid species found only in Madagascar have been listed as Critically Endangered/(Possibly Extinct) including Bulbophyllum tampoketsens, which is threatened due to illegal collection and deforestation. Arico water frog (Telmatobius pefauri) is listed as Critically Endangered/(Possibly Extinct) because it has not been seen since 1976. This frog is threatened by water extraction for human use and for cattle ranching; it may also be affected by cattle trampling the stream habitats according to the experts.

###

For moreinformation or interviewspleasecontact:

Ewa Magiera, IUCNMediaRelations, m +41 76 505 33 78, e-mail

LynneLabanne, IUCNGlobalSpeciesProgramme,IUCN, m +41 79 527 7221, e-mail

IUCN Red List Partner quotes

“The importance of climate change as a threat to iconic species on the IUCN Red List is further underlined by a ground-breaking report to be released shortly by BirdLife International and the National Audubon Society ahead of the UNFCCC meeting on climate change in Paris,” says Stuart Butchart, Head of Science Birdlife International. “The messengers: what birds tell us about threats from climate change and solutions for nature and people highlights how climate change poses major risks to the survival of many bird species, but also illustrates the solutions that BirdLife Partners, IUCN and others are implementing to help species adapt, and the importance of nature-based solutions for people.”

“The most recent Red List update highlights primary threats of climate change in polar bears, habitat loss for fungi, overexploitation for marine fish, and invasive species for a Possibly Extinct plant in Hawai’i, says Dr. Thomas E. Lacher, Jr., Texas A&M University.  “The reality, however, is that all these threats act simultaneously on species, often greatly reinforcing the overall risk of extinction. Although we can isolate primary threats, it is important to consider all possible threats in designing effective conservation actions. The Red List does just that be presenting in the assessments information on all active threats, so that governments and organizations have the necessary data to have comprehensive recovery plans.”

Notesto editors

The IUCNRedListof ThreatenedSpecies™contributes to theachievement of Target12of the2011 to 2020Strategic PlanforBiodiversity.Target 12: By 2020 the extinction of known threatened species has been prevented and their conservation status, particularly of those most in decline, has been improved and sustained.


Globalfigures forthe2015-4 IUCNRedList of ThreatenedSpecies:

TOTAL SPECIES ASSESSED = 79,837

(Total threatened species = 23,250)

Extinct= 834

Extinct in theWild = 69

CriticallyEndangered = 4,898

Endangered = 7,323

Vulnerable = 11,029

Near Threatened = 5,204

Lower Risk/conservationdependent = 238 (thisisanoldcategorythatisgradually beingphasedoutof TheIUCNRedList)

LeastConcern = 37,224

Data Deficient = 13,018

The figures presented above are only for those species that have been assessed for The IUCN Red List to date. Although not all of the world’s species have been assessed, The IUCN Red List provides a useful snapshot of what is happening to species today and highlights the urgent need for conservation action. Relative percentages for threatened species cannot be provided for many taxonomic groups on The IUCN Red List because they have not been comprehensively assessed. For many of these groups, assessment efforts have focussed on threatened species; therefore, the percentage of threatened species for these groups would be heavily biased.

For those groups that have been comprehensively assessed, the percentage of threatened species can be calculated, but the actual number of threatened species is often uncertain because it is not known whether Data Deficient (DD) species are actually threatened or not. Therefore, the percentages presented above provide the best estimate of extinction risk for those groups that have been comprehensively assessed (excluding Extinct species), based on the assumption that Data Deficient species are equally threatened as data sufficient species. In other words, this is a mid-point figure within a range from x% threatened species (if all DD species are not threatened) to y% threatened species (if all DD species are threatened). Available evidence indicates that this is a best estimate.

The IUCNRedListthreat categoriesareas follows, in descendingorderofthreat:

Extinctor Extinctin the Wild

Critically Endangered, Endangered andVulnerable:species threatened withglobalextinction.

Near Threatened: species closeto thethreatenedthresholds orthatwouldbethreatenedwithoutongoingspecific conservationmeasures.

Least Concern: speciesevaluated with a lower risk of extinction.

Data Deficient:noassessmentbecauseof insufficient data.

Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct):thisis nota new IUCN Red List category,but is a flagdeveloped to identifythoseCriticallyEndangeredspecies that are in all probability already Extinctbut forwhichconfirmation is required; forexample,through more extensivesurveysbeingcarriedoutandfailing to findany individuals.

Highlightsfrom the 2015-4update

Beloware a fewexamplesof species that havebeenuplisted, downlistedorappearforthefirst time onTheIUCNRedList.

Examples of other speciesthathavebeenadded in thisupdate

Regional assessments of the Persian Gulf marine bony fishes

The extinction risk of 457 marine bony fishes in the Persian Gulf was regionally assessed using the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria at the regional level. Results from these regional assessments indicate that 8.5% of marine bony fishes in the Persian Gulf are considered threatened. However, the proportion of threatened species is uncertain given the number of Data Deficient species, and could lie between 6.8% (if none of the Data Deficient species were threatened) to 26.7% (if all of the Data Deficient species were threatened). Anthropogenic and environmental extremes are constant threats to marine bony fishes in the Persian Gulf. The newly added regional assessments will transform the current level of knowledge on these species and provide scientists and conservation managers across the region with the information and tools they need to develop more effective marine conservation priorities. However, cross-boundary collaboration between Persian Gulf States is necessary in order for effective management and protection of the marine bony fishes and their associated habitats within this globally important region.

Regional assessments of marine bony shorefishes of the Gulf of Mexico

Regional extinction risk was assessed for 919 species of marine bony shorefishes in the Gulf of Mexico using the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria at the Regional level. Results from this regional assessment show that 4.3% of these species are considered threatened in the Gulf of Mexico region, including a number of large-bodied commercial species (this is the best estimate within the range of 3.8 to14.5% threatened, if the number if DD species is taken into consideration). Forty six of these shorefishes are endemic to this region, and 26% of these endemic species are listed as globally threatened. Besides threats from overexploitation and coastal development, the potential for catastrophic events such as oil spills haunts the Gulf of Mexico marine ecoregion. This new data now establishes a baseline of the region-wide conservation status of species and thus will improve the effectiveness of restoration and management efforts.

Freshwater fishes

Kissing loach (Parabotia curtus), a freshwater fish from Japan, is under extreme threat from a development for a football stadium that is due to start soon.

Fungi

Agaricus pattersoniae, listed as Vulnerable, is endemic to coastal central California (USA). It lives alongside the occurring in Monterey cypress (Cuppressus macrocarpa) which is also listed as Vulnerable. The fungus needs an undisturbed layer of old pine needles to survive. Habitat destruction for urban development and increasing fire frequency are the main threats.

Plants for People

Utleria salicifolia, a medicinal plant, has been listed as Vulnerable. It is used for treating asthma and skin diseases. Threatened by unregulated collection, artificial forest fire and habitat degradation.

Atlas daisy (Anacyclus pyrethrum) listed as Vulnerable is found in Morocco.  It is used to treat many diseases and conditions including speech disorders, laryngitis, sickle cell anaemia, epilepsy and depression. Premature exploitation and bad collection practices of the wild species often destroy the entire plant, preventing it from growing again.

Quercus acutifolia, listed as Vulnerable, is a species of oak which is used locally as firewood and charcoal, as well as for tools, fence posts, and small-scale building and construction materials. The bark can be used medicinally for the treatment of burns. Climate change poses a major threat. A recent study (Gomez-Mendoza and Arriaga 2007) identified the species as highly vulnerable to range contractions under multiple climate scenarios, projecting declines in distribution of up to 41% under projections by 2050.

Rediscovered species

Mahé Boulder Cricket (Phalangacris alluaudi) was previously listed as a Possibly Extinct species. However, it was rediscovered in 2014 and is now listed as Critically Endangered.

Examples of other species that have been uplisted (conservation status is worse)

Atacama toad (Rhinella atacamensis) has been uplisted from Least Concern to Vulnerable. Endemic to Chile, this toad has undergone an estimated 35 to 40% decline over the past 10 years due to habitat loss and degradation, which has increased in recent years. Extensive droughts and water pollution in rivers threaten the future of this species. Abstraction of surface water (both for human consumption and for agricultural use), mining, agriculture, livestock farming and timber plantations are also affecting it.

Spotted fanaloka (Fossa fossana) has been uplisted from Near Threatened to Vulnerable. Endemic to Madagascar, this is a nocturnal species, which is restricted to primary forest areas. It is threatened by deforestation for cultivated land, and by forest degradation through selective logging and charcoal production. It is also threatened by hunting.

Geometric tortoise (Psammobates geometricus) has been uplisted from Endangered to Critically Endangered. Endemic to the Western Cape, South Africa, this tortoise’s range has reduced dramatically. It has also undergone massive population declines: in 1992, the largest subpopulation was estimated to contain between 1,500 and 3,400 tortoises, but in 2012, the entire global population was estimated to be between 700 and 800. Over 90% of its original habitat has been irreversibly converted to agriculture, and populations in remaining habitat have suffered catastrophic declines from fire-induced mortality, with little indication of population recovery.

Examples of other species that have been downlisted (conservation status is better)

Hamilton’s Frog (Leiopelma hamiltoni) has been downlisted from Endangered to Vulnerable. The only naturally occurring population is confined to a single rock tumble on Stephens Island (New Zealand). The total population size was previously estimated to be less than 300 mature animals. Since then, a translocated subpopulation has been successfully established on Nukuwaiata Island site. Therefore, the total population size is now estimated to be between 300 to 800 individuals, including the subpopulation in its original natural range and the translocated subpopulation, and appears to be increasing.

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About TheIUCNRedList of ThreatenedSpecies™

The IUCNRedList of ThreatenedSpecies™(orThe IUCNRedList)is an invaluable resource to guide conservation action and policy decisions. It is a healthcheck forourplanet – a Barometerof Life. It is theworld’s most comprehensiveinformationsourceontheglobalconservationstatus of plant, animalandfungispecies. It is basedonanobjectivesystem forassessingtheriskofextinctionof a species shouldnoconservationactionbetaken.

Speciesare assigned to oneof eight categories of threat basedon whethertheymeet criterialinked to populationtrend, populationsizeandstructureandgeographicrange. SpecieslistedasCriticallyEndangered, EndangeredorVulnerablearecollectivelydescribedas ‘threatened’.

The IUCNRedListisnotjust a registerofnames andassociatedthreatcategories. It is a richcompendiumof informationon thethreats to thespecies,theirecologicalrequirements,wheretheylive,andinformationonconservationactions that can be used to reduceorpreventextinctions.TheIUCNRedListis a joint effort betweenIUCNand its SpeciesSurvivalCommission,workingwithits IUCNRedList partnersBirdLifeInternational; BotanicGardens ConservationInternational;ConservationInternational;NatureServe; Microsoft; RoyalBotanic Gardens, Kew;SapienzaUniversity of Rome;TexasA&M University;Wildscreen;andZoological Society of London.www.iucnredlist.orghttps://www.facebook.com/iucn.red.list  https://twitter.com/IUCNRedListhttp://support.iucnredlist.org/

About IUCN

IUCN, International Union for Conservation of Nature, helps the world find pragmatic solutions to our most pressing environment and development challenges.  IUCN’s work focusses on valuing and conserving nature, ensuring effective and equitable governance of its use, and deploying nature-based solutions to global challenges in climate, food and development. IUCN supports scientific research, manages field projects all over the world, and brings governments, NGOs, the UN and companies together to develop policy, laws and best practice. IUCN is the world’s oldest and largest global environmental organisation, with almost 1,300 government and NGO Members and more than 15,000 volunteer experts in 185 countries. IUCN’s work is supported by almost 1,000 staff in 45 offices and hundreds of partners in public, NGO and private sectors around the world.  www.iucn.org

About theSpeciesSurvival Commission

The SpeciesSurvivalCommission (SSC)is thelargest of IUCN’s six volunteercommissionswith a global membershipof around7,500experts. SSC advises IUCNanditsmembersonthe widerangeoftechnical andscientific aspects of species conservation, andisdedicated to securing a futureforbiodiversity. SSC has significant inputintotheinternational agreementsdealingwithbiodiversity conservation.

About BirdLife

BirdLifeInternationalis theworld’slargestnatureconservationPartnership. Togetherweare120BirdLifePartnersworldwide

onepercountryandgrowing,withalmost11 million supporters,7,000localconservationgroupsand 7,400staff. Findout more atwww.birdlife.org / www.facebook.com/BirdLifeInternational

About BotanicGardensConservationInternational

BGCI is aninternationalorganisationthat exists to ensuretheworld-wideconservationof threatenedplants, thecontinuedexistenceof whichareintrinsicallylinked to global issuesincludingpoverty,humanwell-beingandclimatechange. BGCI representsover700 membersmostlybotanic gardens – in 118countries.Weaim to supportandempowerourmembers andthewiderconservationcommunity so that theirknowledgeandexpertise can beapplied to reversingthethreatofextinctioncrisis facingonethirdofallplants. http://www.bgci.org

About ConservationInternational(CI)

Building upon a strongfoundationof science, partnershipandfielddemonstration, CIempowerssocieties to responsibly andsustainablycarefornature,ourglobalbiodiversity, forthelongterm well-beingofpeople.Founded in 1987andmarkingits 25thanniversary in 2012,CI hasheadquarters in theWashingtonDCarea,and900employeesworking in nearly 30countriesonfourcontinents,plus1,000+partnersaroundtheworld.Formoreinformation,pleasevisitus at www.conservation.org,orfollowuson   Facebook orTwitter.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975,Microsoft (Nasdaq“MSFT”)is theworldwideleader in software, services andsolutions thathelppeopleandbusinesses realizetheirfullpotential.http://www.microsoft.com

About NatureServe

NatureServe is a non-profit conservationorganisationdedicated to providingthescientificbasisforeffectiveconservationaction.Throughitsnetworkof 82naturalheritageprogrammesandconservationdatacentres in theUnitedStates,Canada, andLatinAmerica, NatureServeprovides a uniquebodyofdetailedscientific informationandconservationbiodiversity expertiseabout theplants,animals, andecosystemsof theAmericas. www.natureserve.org

About theRoyalBotanicGardens,Kew

The RoyalBotanic Gardens, Kewis a world-famous scientificorganisation, internationallyrespectedfor its outstandinglivingcollectionofplants andworld-classHerbariumaswellasitsscientificexpertise in plant diversity, conservationandsustainable development in theUK andaroundtheworld.KewGardens is a majorinternationalvisitorattraction. Itslandscaped132hectares andRBGKew’s country estate,Wakehurst Place, attractnearly two millionvisitors every year.Kewwas made a UNESCO World HeritageSite in July 2003andcelebratedits250thanniversary in 2009.Wakehurst Place is home to Kew'sMillenniumSeedBank, thelargestwildplant seedbank in theworld.RBGKewanditspartnershavecollectedandconservedseedfrom10 percent ofthe world'swildfloweringplantspecies(c.30,000species). Theaim is toconserve25 percent by 2020, anditsenormouspotential for futureconservation can onlybefulfilledwiththesupportof thepublic andotherfunders.www.kew.org

About SapienzaUniversity of Rome

With over700years ofhistory and145,000students, Sapienza is thelargest University in Europe, thesecond in theworld after El Cairo, a city withinthecity. TheUniversity includes 11facultiesand67departments. In Sapienzathereareover4,500professors, and5,000administrativeandtechnical staff. Sapienzaoffers a widechoiceof coursesincluding300 degreeprogrammes and200 specializedqualifications. Students coming fromotherregionsareover30,000andtheforeignstudentsareover7,000. Sapienza plansandcarriesout important scientificinvestigations in almost alldisciplines,achievinghigh-standardresults bothon a national andonaninternationallevel. ProfessorLuigiFratihasbeentheRectorof SapienzaUniversity sinceNovember2008. http://www.uniroma1.it/

About TexasA&MUniversity

Fromhumblebeginnings in 1876asTexas' firstpublic institutionof higherlearning, to a bustling5,200-acrecampus with a nationally recognizedfaculty, Texas A&M Universityisoneof a selectfewuniversities withland-grant, sea-grantandspace-grantdesignations. With anenrolmentofabout half men andhalf women,25percent of thefreshmanclass arethefirst in theirfamily to attendcollege. Here,39,000-plusundergraduatesand more than9,400graduatestudentshaveaccess to world-classresearchprogramsandaward-winningfaculty. TexasA&M hastwobranchcampuses,one in Galveston, Texas, andone in theMiddleEasterncountry ofQatar. Thisresearch-intensiveflagshipuniversitywith10collegeswasrecentlyrankedfirst in thenationby Smart Money magazinefor"pay-back ratio"(whatgraduatesearncompared to thecostof theireducation). The2011U.S. News and World Report ranked TexasA&M secondnationally in their"Great Schools,Great Prices" category amongpublicuniversities and22ndoverall. Many degreeprogrammes areranked amongthetop10 in the country.www.tamu.edu

AboutWildscreen

Wildscreen isanaward-winingwildlifeconservationcharity that sharesawe-inspiringimagesoflifeonEarth to empower conservationaroundtheworld.Itachieves its missionthroughitsfourinterconnectedinitiatives - WildscreenArkive, WildscreenExchange.WildscreenFestivalsandWildscreenOutreach.Founded in 1982,Wildscreeninspiresphotographers andfilmmakers to take themost vitalimages,uses thoseimages to inspirethe nextgenerationof conservationistsonline and in theircommunities,and arms conservationorganisationsaroundtheworldwiththem so theirall-important stories have thebest chanceof beingseenandheard.http://www.wildscreen.org

About theZoological Society of London(ZSL)

Founded in 1826, theZoological Society ofLondon(ZSL)isaninternational scientific, conservationandeducationalcharity: the key roleis theconservationof animalsandtheirhabitats.TheSociety runsZSLLondonZooandZSLWhipsnadeZoo, carriesoutscientificresearchattheInstituteof Zoology andisactively involved in fieldconservation in over50countries worldwide.www.zsl.org