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Birds in Europe (2004)

Species Accounts

Birds in Europe: population estimates, trends and conservation status, published by BirdLife International in November 2004, is the second review of the conservation status of all wild birds in Europe. Like its 1994 predecessor, Birds in Europe, it identifies priority species (known as Species of European Conservation Concern or SPECs) in order that conservation action can be taken to improve their status. Birds in the European Union: a status assessment is a 50 pages report published by BirdLife International in November 2004. Based on BirdLife International`s extensive data on bird populations, trends and conservation status, it analyses the situation of wild birds in the 25 Member States of the enlarged European Union. The report gives a special reference to the impact of the EU Birds Directive, celebrating the 25th anniversary of this remarkable piece of European legislation.

The following accounts are taken from Birds in Europe and give an idea of how some of the continent`s birds are faring. Species accounts

Losers

Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica
Not yet recovered

Widespread summer visitor to most of Europe, which accounts for less than a quarter of its global breeding range. European breeding population extremely large (>16,000,000 pairs), but underwent moderate decline between 1970 and1990. Although declines abated or even reversed in certain countries during 1990?2000, species continued to decline across much of Europe, and underwent a small decline overall. Its population has clearly not yet recovered to the level that preceded its initial decline, and consequently it is evaluated as Depleted. Black Grouse Tetrao tetrix
Down more than 10%

Widespread resident in northern Europe, occurring more patchily farther south, with Europe accounting for less than half of its global range. European breeding population is very large (over 2,500,000 pairs), but underwent large decline between 1970?1990. Although Black Grouse increased slightly in its Russian stronghold during 1990?2000, populations continued to decline across much of its European range?notably sizeable ones in Finland and Sweden?and the species underwent a moderate decline (10%+) overall. Consequently, it is evaluated as declining.

Common Starling Sturnus vulgaris
Down more than 10%

Widespread breeder across most of Europe, which accounts for less than half its global breeding range. European breeding population is extremely large (23,000,000+ pairs), and was stable between 1970 & 1990. Although Starling was stable or increased in many parts of Europe during 1990?2000, it declined in Turkey, Russia and most countries in north-west Europe, and underwent a moderate decline (10%+) overall. This previously secure species is now evaluated as declining. Garganey Anas querquedula
Down more than 10%

Widespread summer visitor to much of Europe, which accounts for less than half of its global breeding range. European breeding population is large (390,000+ pairs), but underwent large decline between 1970 & 1990. Although the trend of the stronghold population in Russia during 1990?2000 was unknown, the species continued to decline across most of its European range?including sizeable populations in Belarus and Ukraine?and underwent a moderate decline (10%+) overall. Provisionally evaluated as declining.

House sparrow Passer domesticus
Down more than 10%

Widespread resident across most of Europe, which accounts for less than half its global range. European breeding population is extremely large (>63,000,000 pairs), and was stable between 1970 & 1990. Although House Sparrow remained stable or increased in many countries during 1990?2000, there were declines across much of Europe ? most notably in the sizeable Turkish population ? and the species underwent a moderate decline (10%+) overall. This previously secure species is now evaluated as Declining. Northern Lapwing Vanellus vanellus
Down more than 30%

Widespread breeder across most of Europe, which holds over 75% of its global population. European breeding population is very large (1,700,000+ pairs), and was stable between 1970 & 1990. Although several small populations were stable or increased during 1990?2000, Lapwing suffered declines across much of Europe?most notably in sizeable populations in the United Kingdom, Netherlands and Russia?and underwent a large decline (30%+) overall. Consequently, this previously Secure species is now evaluated as Vulnerable.

Red Kite Milvus milvus
Down more than 10%

Breeds mainly in Iberia and west-central Europe, which constitutes over 95% of its global breeding range. Its European breeding population is relatively small (25,000+ pairs), and was stable between 1970 and 1990. Although trends were stable or increased in several countries during 1990?2000, key populations in Germany, France and Spain declined, and the species underwent a moderate decline (10%+) overall. This previously secure species is now evaluated as Declining. Winners

Common Stonechat Saxicola torquata
Moderate increase

Widespread breeder across much of Europe, which accounts for less than a quarter of its global breeding range. European breeding population is very large (>2,000,000 pairs), but declined markedly between 1970 & 1990. Although Stonechat declined in a few countries during 1990?2000, the majority of European populations increased or were stable (trends were not known for Spain or Russia), and it underwent a moderate increase overall. This increase probably outweighs the earlier decline, and consequently the species is provisionally evaluated as Secure.

Northern Gannet Morus bassanus
Large increase

Breeds at relatively small number of sites in north-western Europe, which holds over 75% of global breeding population. European breeding population is large (300,000+ pairs), and increased substantially between 1970 and 1990. Continued to increase across the majority of its European range during 1990?2000, and underwent a large increase overall. As a consequence of the range expansion accompanying its population growth, this previously localised species is now evaluated as Secure. Peregrine Falco peregrinus
Increased more than 10%

Widespread breeder across much of Europe, which accounts for less than a quarter of its global range. European breeding population is relatively small (<25,000 pairs), but increased markedly between 1970?1990. Although the sizeable Turkish population declined during 1990?2000, virtually every other population in its range increased, and the species underwent a moderate overall increase (>10%). This previously Rare species is now evaluated as Secure.

White Stork Ciconia ciconia
Not yet recovered

Widespread summer visitor to much of Europe, which constitutes >75% of its global breeding range. European breeding population is large (>180,000 pairs), but underwent a large decline between 1970?1990. Although White Stork experienced a moderate increase overall during 1990?2000?with stable or increasing trends across most of Europe?its population has not yet recovered to the level that preceded its decline. Consequently, it is evaluated as Depleted.White-tailed Eagle Haliaeetus albicilla
Increased more than 50%

Widely but sparsely distributed resident of mainly northern and eastern Europe, which accounts for less than a quarter of global breeding range. European breeding population is small (6,600+ pairs but increased substantially between 1970 and 1990. Continued to increase over virtually all its European range during 1990 2000 including strongholds in Fennoscandia Poland and Germany and underwent a large increase>50%). Consequently, the European status of this globally Near Threatened species is evaluated as Rare.

Whooper Swan Cygnus Cygnus
Large increase

Breeds mainly in Iceland, Fennoscandia and northern Russia, but winters patchily across much of Europe, which constitutes >50% of its global wintering range. The European wintering population is relatively large (65,000+ individuals), and was stable between 1970 & 1990. Although there were declines in a handful of countries during 1990?2000, most European wintering populations ? including key ones in Denmark and Germany ? were broadly stable or increased, and the species underwent a large increase overall. Consequently, it is evaluated as Secure.

4th July 2014