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Bush Thick-knee Burhinus grallarius

IUCN Red List history

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

Species attributes

Migratory status not a migrant Forest dependency Medium
Land mass type Australia
shelf island
Average mass -

Distribution

  Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 2,570,000 medium
Number of locations -
Fragmentation -

Population & trend

  Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals 10000-15000 poor Estimated 2010
Population trend Decreasing poor -
Number of subpopulations 1 - - -
Largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 10.5 - - -
Population justification: The total Australian population has separately been estimated at 15,000 individuals, and to 'almost certainly exceed 10,000 mature individuals' (Garnett et al. 2011). The population is therefore placed in the band 10,000-15,000 mature individuals.
Trend justification:

This widespread species declined historically in the southern parts of its range, primarily owing to the destruction and degradation of its preferred woodland habitat, predation by introduced foxes and interactions with habitat loss, however most of these declines occurred prior to the past three generations (32 years).  The species remains common in northern Australia, including in urban areas where there is no evidence of declines despite depredation from feral and domestic cats and dogs. It is therefore suspected to have undergone a slow overall population decline during the past three generations.

Country/Territory distribution

Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Breeding Non-breeding Passage Resident
Australia Native Extant       Yes
Indonesia Native Extant       Yes
Papua New Guinea Native Extant       Yes

Important Bird Areas where this species has triggered the IBA criteria

Country/Territory IBA Name IBA link
Australia Adelaide and Mary River Floodplains site factsheet
Australia Alligator Rivers Floodplains site factsheet
Australia Anson Bay, Daly and Reynolds River Floodplains site factsheet
Australia Arnhem Plateau site factsheet
Australia Atherton Tablelands site factsheet
Australia Brisbane Water site factsheet
Australia Clarke Range site factsheet
Australia Cooloola and Fraser Coast site factsheet
Australia Fortescue Marshes site factsheet
Australia Gregory National Park site factsheet
Australia Kangaroo Island site factsheet
Australia Keep River site factsheet
Australia Lakefield Grasslands site factsheet
Australia Mandora Marsh and Anna Plains site factsheet
Australia Morehead River site factsheet
Australia Moreton Bay and Pumicestone Passage site factsheet
Australia Mornington Sanctuary site factsheet
Australia Ord Irrigation Area site factsheet
Australia Prince Regent and Mitchell River site factsheet
Australia Puckapunyal site factsheet
Australia Riverland Mallee site factsheet
Australia Ross River Dam site factsheet
Australia Staaten River site factsheet
Australia Tiwi Islands site factsheet
Australia Welford site factsheet
Australia Yinberrie Hills site factsheet

Habitats & altitude

Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Artificial/Terrestrial Arable Land suitable resident
Artificial/Terrestrial Pastureland suitable resident
Artificial/Terrestrial Urban Areas suitable resident
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Dry major resident
Grassland Subtropical/Tropical Dry suitable resident
Shrubland Subtropical/Tropical Dry suitable resident
Altitude 0 - 0 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 Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Decline Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion
Agriculture & aquaculture Livestock farming & ranching / Small-holder grazing, ranching or farming Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Decline Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion
Biological resource use Logging & wood harvesting / Unintentional effects: (subsistence/small scale) [harvest] Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Decline Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Ecosystem degradation
Invasive and other problematic species, genes & diseases Invasive non-native/alien species/diseases / Domestic Cat (Felis catus) Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Negligible declines Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Reduced reproductive success, Species mortality
Invasive and other problematic species, genes & diseases Invasive non-native/alien species/diseases / Domestic Dog (Canis familiaris) Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Negligible declines Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Reduced reproductive success, Species mortality
Invasive and other problematic species, genes & diseases Invasive non-native/alien species/diseases / Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Negligible declines Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Reduced reproductive success, Species mortality
Pollution Agricultural & forestry effluents / Herbicides and pesticides Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Decline Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Species mortality
Residential & commercial development Housing & urban areas Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Decline Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion
Transportation & service corridors Roads & railroads Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Decline Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Species mortality

Utilisation

Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Food (human) Whole Eggs Wild Subsistence, National Non-trivial Recent
Pets Whole Adults and juveniles Wild International Non-trivial Recent
Sport Whole Adults and juveniles Wild Subsistence, National Non-trivial Recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Burhinus grallarius. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 26/12/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 26/12/2014.

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 Least Concern
Family Burhinidae (Thick-knees)
Species name author (Latham, 1801)
Population size 10000-15000 mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 2,570,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Summary information on this species