Tags: kiwis | endangered | status | vulnerable

Kiwis Endangered Status: 2 Bird Species Promoted to Vulnerable

Image: Kiwis Endangered Status: 2 Bird Species Promoted to Vulnerable
The Northern brown kiwi has been moved from the endangered list to vulnerable. (Isselee/Dreamstime)

By    |   Tuesday, 05 Dec 2017 05:08 PM

Two types of flightless kiwis no longer have their status listed as endangered.

Noting that the kiwis' population had steadily increased in recent years, the updated Red List by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources changed the status of the Northern brown kiwi and rowi kiwi to “vulnerable,” a step up from “endangered.”

The New Zealand government and community groups had made efforts to save the birds for more than 25 years, CNN reported. Habitat loss as well as predators such as feral cats, dogs, and weasels that would kill fledglings had threatened the birds. 

The rowi kiwi population increased from 160 in 1995 to 450 adults today, the IUCN said. Northern brown kiwi numbers have stopped declining and are expected to increase in the near future.

Operation Nest Egg was a program that rescued wild kiwi eggs and then reintroduced the baby chicks into the wild after they hatched or fledged, increasing the number of birds that survived as juveniles from 5 percent to 60 percent, BirdLife International reported.

“The kiwi downlistings show that there is hope,” Global Science Coordinator of BirdLife International Ian Burfield said, CNN reported. Burfield assesses the species for placement on the IUCN Red List.

Burfield praised New Zealand as a leader in conservation techniques, many of which are now being used in other places to assist other threatened species. 

“Other kiwi like the great spotted are still in serious trouble,” BirdLife New Zealand Chief Conservation Officer Kevin Hackwell said, CNN reported. 

Dogs remain the biggest predator threat to the kiwi, with even one dog being responsible for lowering the population of the entire area at times, BirdLife reported. Further kiwi recovery plans aim to build kiwi populations in New Zealand from a total of 70,000 to 100,000, including all species. 

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Two types of flightless kiwis no longer have their status listed as endangered.
kiwis, endangered, status, vulnerable
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2017-08-05
Tuesday, 05 Dec 2017 05:08 PM
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