A shrinking home for endemic birds

  • Birds endemic to the biodiverse Western Ghats appear to be in greater danger than they were thought to be, because the range of places they live in may have been overestimated.
  • The ‘Red List’ classifications of the IUCN serve to guide protection policies; ‘less vulnerable’ species receive a lower conservation focus.

Points to Remember:

  • The Malabar grey hornbill which IUCN classifies as ‘Least Concern’ and believes is distributed across 2.3 lakh sq.km in Kerala and Karnataka.
  • But when researchers used a spatial modelling technique, they found its range was just 43,060 sq. km, or, nearly 81% less than the estimates. This would put the bird in the ‘Near Threatened’ category.
  • Again, the Nilgiri pipit appears to have lost 88% of its habitat, making it “endangered” rather than “vulnerable”.

Source: The Hindu

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