An article by Debbie Pain, Rhys Green and Nigel Clark discusses the possibility of the extinction of the Spoon billed Sandpiper within a few years time. Thanks to Mr. Phil Round for forwarding this article to us. Photo by Mr. Peter Ericsson.
The Abstract: (taken from the article)
The Spoon-billed Sandpiper Eurynorhynchus pygmeus is thought to be one of the most endangered birds in the world. The latest information suggests that the population is in free fall and, if current trends continue, could be at such low levels that extinction through random events could happen within 5–10 years. Habitat loss at key staging posts on the bird’s 8,000-km migration route to and from its southern and Southeast Asian wintering grounds is one factor in this charismatic wader’s decline, but recent research suggests that trapping on the wintering grounds may be a key reason for the recent acceleration in the rate of decline. Conservation priorities for the species are outlined and the feasibility of a conservation breeding programme, either to support an existing small population or to re-establish one that has become extinct, is discussed.