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Red-headed Vulture Sarcogyps calvus

IUCN Red List Criteria

Critically Endangered A2abce+3bce+4abce 
Endangered A2abce+3bce+4abce;C2a(ii) 
Vulnerable A2abce+3bce+4abce 

IUCN Red List history

Year Category
2013 Critically Endangered
2012 Critically Endangered
2009 Critically Endangered
2008 Critically Endangered
2007 Critically Endangered
2004 Near Threatened
2000 Lower Risk/Near Threatened
1994 Lower Risk/Near Threatened
1988 Lower Risk/Least Concern

Species attributes

Migratory status not a migrant Forest dependency Medium
Land mass type continent
Average mass -

Distribution

  Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 3,690,000 medium
Number of locations 11-100 -
Fragmentation -

Population & trend

  Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals 2500-9999 poor Estimated 2007
Population trend Decreasing medium -
Number of subpopulations 2-100 - - -
Largest subpopulation 1001-10000 - - -
Generation length (yrs) 15 - - -
Population justification: Given its rarity in South-East Asia, it is unlikely that more than a few hundred individuals remain, while the total population seems unlikely to exceed 10,000 mature individuals given the patchiness of its distribution across India and the apparently catastrophic very recent declines. In light of this it is placed in the band 2,500-9,999 mature individuals. This equates to 3,750-14,999 individuals in total, here rounded to 3,500-15,000 individuals.
Trend justification: Cuthbert et al. (2006) calculate a decline in excess of 90% within 10 years in India. Similar declines are expected throughout the Indian Subcontinent.

Country/Territory distribution

Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Breeding Non-breeding Passage Resident
Bangladesh Native Extant       Yes
Bhutan Native Possibly Extinct       Yes
Cambodia Native Extant       Yes
China (mainland) Native Extant       Yes
India Native Extant       Yes
Laos Native Extant       Yes
Malaysia Native Possibly Extinct       Yes
Myanmar Native Extant       Yes
Nepal Native Extant       Yes
Pakistan Vagrant Extant   Yes    
Thailand Native Extant       Yes
Vietnam Native Extant       Yes

Important Bird Areas where this species has triggered the IBA criteria

Country/Territory IBA Name IBA link
Cambodia Chhep site factsheet
Cambodia Lomphat site factsheet
Cambodia Mekong River from Kratie to Lao PDR site factsheet
Cambodia Mondulkiri - Kratie Lowlands site factsheet
Cambodia Sekong River site factsheet
Cambodia Upper Srepok Catchment site factsheet
Cambodia Upper Stung Sen Catchment site factsheet
Cambodia Western Siem Pang site factsheet
Laos Attapu Plain site factsheet
Laos Dong Khanthung site factsheet
Laos Siphandon site factsheet
Laos Xe Kong Plains site factsheet
Nepal Annapurna Conservation Area site factsheet
Nepal Barandabhar forests and wetlands site factsheet
Nepal Bardia National Park site factsheet
Nepal Chitwan National Park site factsheet
Nepal Dang Deukhuri foothill forests and west Rapti wetlands site factsheet
Nepal Dharan forests site factsheet
Nepal Farmlands in Lumbini area site factsheet
Nepal Khaptad National Park site factsheet
Nepal Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve and Koshi Barrage site factsheet
Nepal Langtang National Park site factsheet
Nepal Mai Valley forests site factsheet
Nepal Nawalparasi forests site factsheet
Nepal Rampur valley site factsheet
Nepal Sukla Phanta Wildlife Reserve site factsheet
Vietnam Chu M'lanh site factsheet
Vietnam Yok Don site factsheet

Habitats & altitude

Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Artificial/Terrestrial Urban Areas marginal resident
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Dry major resident
Grassland Subtropical/Tropical Dry suitable resident
Savanna Dry suitable resident
Shrubland Subtropical/Tropical Dry suitable resident
Altitude 0 - 2500 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact

Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Agriculture & aquaculture Annual & perennial non-timber crops / Agro-industry farming Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Decline Medium Impact: 6
Stresses
Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion
Biological resource use Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals / Persecution/control Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Negligible declines Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Species mortality
Biological resource use Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals / Unintentional effects (species is not the target) Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Decline Medium Impact: 6
Stresses
Indirect ecosystem effects
Natural system modifications Other ecosystem modifications Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Decline Medium Impact: 6
Stresses
Ecosystem degradation
Pollution Agricultural & forestry effluents / Type Unknown/Unrecorded Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Very Rapid Declines High Impact: 8
Stresses
Species mortality

Utilisation

Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Pets Whole Adults and juveniles Wild International Non-trivial Recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Sarcogyps calvus. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 22/12/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 22/12/2014.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Critically Endangered
Family Accipitridae (Hawks, Eagles)
Species name author (Scopoli, 1786)
Population size 2500-9999 mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 3,690,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Summary information on this species