threatened and endangered

Earth’s most highly threatened terrestrial insular vertebrates (111 of 1,184 species). Of these, 107 islands were in 34 countries and territories and could have eradication projects initiated by 2020. Concentrating efforts to eradicate invasive mammals on these 107 islands would benefit 151 populations of 80 highly threatened vertebrates and make a major contribution towards achieving global conservation targets adopted by the world’s nations.

Only around a third of the world’s remaining forest cover survives in the form of Intact Forest Landscapes (IFL), and that proportion is declining.

We assessed the prevalence of alien species as a driver of recent extinctions in five major taxa (plants, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals), using data from the IUCN Red List. Our results show that alien species are the second most common threat associated with species that have gone completely extinct from these taxa since AD 1500. Aliens are the most common threat associated with extinctions in three of the five taxa analysed, and for vertebrate extinctions overall.

Assessing species' vulnerability to climate change is a prerequisite for developing effective strategies to conserve them. The last three decades have seen exponential growth in the number of studies evaluating how, how much, why, when, and where species will be impacted by climate change. We provide an overview of the rapidly developing field of climate change vulnerability assessment (CCVA) and describe key concepts, terms, steps and considerations.

The Kuramoo, or Blue Lorikeet (Vini peruviana), is listed by IUCN as threatened. Formerly, the species was widespread on the Society and Tuamotu ISlands, but it became extinct on Tahiti, Moorea and other large islands in the Society Group early this century and is now also extinct on many other islands on which it once occurred. Today, in French Polynesia, it apparently survives only on two small islands in the Society Group and several in the Tuamotu Group.

The Pacific islands of Oceania cover almost 15% of the world’s surface and are characterised by a high degree of ecosystem and species diversity. The region is characterised by thousands of isolated small coral atolls and higher volcanic islands, which has led to the high diversity of species found today. In fact, the number of plants and animals found nowhere else on earth (endemic species) is extremely high - often up to 90% for particular groups. Often, these rare and endemic species are adapted to specialised habitats and limited to small areas of a few islands.

Land snails of the genus Partula, inhabiting the high islands of the Pacific Ocean, have provided exceptional opportunities for studies on the origin and differentiation of species. The endemic taxa of Moorea, in French Polynesia, have been particularly well studied.