It is a sobering thought that seven species of wader have become extinct and that a further five are listed as critically Endangered in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. As it is with much of our global fauna and flora, conservation projects are vital if we are to halt the decline of our waders.
In addition to the seven species already listed as extinct: Kiritimati Sandpiper; Moorea Sandpiper; Tahiti Sandpiper; Canary Island Oystercatcher; Javan Lapwing; North Island Snipe; and South Island Snipe, the Eskimo Curlew is also thought to have succumbed to the same fate.
Of the species listed as Critically Endangered the figures paint a grim picture:
- Southern Red-breasted Plover: estimated population in 2017, 60-80 and declining.
- Jerdon’s Courser: estimated population in 2000, 50-249 and declining.
- Spoon-billed Sandpiper: estimated population in 2016, 240 to 456 and declining.
- Slender-billed Curlew: estimated population 1-49 in 2012 and declining.
- Plains-wanderer estimated population 250-999 in 2000 and declining
Source: BirdLife International
Conservation is critical if we are to safeguard our waders
Waders face a number of threats including habitat loss, hunting and loss of food supply. Fortunately, there are a number of excellent organisations, study groups and individual projects working hard to protect waders and their habitats. You can learn about some of these in the ‘Current Conservation Efforts’ sections of the species pages in the wader directory.
A variety of methods, such as Tracking, Captive Breeding and Headstarting, are being used to monitor and inform conservation efforts on a global basis. Wader Quest plays a part in this through raising much needed funds for projects and raising awareness about the plight of our waders.
If you have a project that needs support, please contact us and we, together with our supporters, will do our best to help.
With thanks to the following photographers New Zealand DOC
CC denotes images are subject to CC license