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Reddish Egret Egretta rufescens

IUCN Red List Criteria

Near Threatened (criteria nearly met) C1+2a(ii) 

IUCN Red List history

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

Species attributes

Migratory status full migrant Forest dependency Low
Land mass type   Average mass 614 g

Distribution

  Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 349,000 medium
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 516,000 medium
Number of locations -
Fragmentation -

Population & trend

  Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals 10000-19999 poor Estimated 2009
Population trend Increasing poor -
Number of subpopulations 2-100 - - -
Largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 6.6 - - -
Population justification: Population estimates throughout its range are: 954-1,260 breeding pairs on the Pacific coast; 1,000 pairs at Green Island, Texas; 200-300 pairs elsewhere in Texas; fewer than 200 pairs at Tamaulipas, Mexico; 50 pairs at Inagua, Bahamas; 50 pairs elsewhere in the Bahamas; up to 200 pairs in Florida, and up to c.5,000 resident individuals in Belize. This suggests a total of c.10,500-11,300 mature individuals with an unknown additional number in Cuba and the Dominican Republic. Therefore it is best placed in the band 10,000-19,999 mature individuals, equivalent to 15,000-29,999 individuals in total, rounded here to 15,000-30,000 individuals.
Trend justification: Population trends are not well understood; certainly the species seems to be increasing in parts of its range where it is well protected and has safe nesting sites, but declines are reported at the majority of sites.

Country/Territory distribution

Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Breeding Non-breeding Passage Resident
Antigua and Barbuda Native Extant        
Aruba (to Netherlands) Native Extant        
Bahamas Native Extant        
Barbados Native Extant        
Belize Native Extant        
Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba (to Netherlands) Native Extant        
Cayman Islands (to UK) Native Extant        
Colombia Native Extant        
Costa Rica Native Extant   Yes    
Cuba Native Extant        
Curaçao (to Netherlands) Native Extant        
Dominica Native Extant        
Dominican Republic Native Extant        
El Salvador Native Extant        
Guatemala Native Extant        
Haiti Native Extant        
Honduras Native Extant        
Jamaica Native Extant   Yes    
Martinique (to France) Native Extant        
Mexico Native Extant        
Montserrat (to UK) Native Extant        
Nicaragua Native Extant        
Panama Vagrant Extant        
Puerto Rico (to USA) Native Extant        
Sint Maarten (to Netherlands) Native Extant        
St Kitts and Nevis Native Extant        
St Lucia Native Extant        
St Martin (to France) Vagrant Extant   Yes    
St Vincent and the Grenadines Native Extant        
Trinidad and Tobago Native Extant        
Turks and Caicos Islands (to UK) Native Extant   Yes    
USA Native Extant Yes      
Venezuela Native Extant        
Virgin Islands (to UK) Vagrant Extant        
Virgin Islands (to USA) Vagrant Extant        

Important Bird Areas where this species has triggered the IBA criteria

Country/Territory IBA Name IBA link
Bahamas Great Inagua site factsheet
Belize Belize Coastal and near shore islands site factsheet
Belize Crooked Tree and associated wetlands site factsheet
Belize Northeastern Belize site factsheet
Mexico Istmo de Tehuantepec-Mar Muerto site factsheet
Turks and Caicos Islands (to UK) East Caicos and adjacent areas site factsheet
Turks and Caicos Islands (to UK) North, Middle and East Caicos Ramsar Site site factsheet
Venezuela Monumento Natural Laguna de las Marites site factsheet
Venezuela Refugio de Fauna Silvestre y Reserva de Pesca Ciénaga de Los Olivitos site factsheet

Habitats & altitude

Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Mangrove Vegetation Above High Tide Level suitable breeding
Marine Coastal/Supratidal Sea Cliffs and Rocky Offshore Islands major breeding
Marine Intertidal Mud Flats and Salt Flats suitable breeding
Marine Intertidal Mud Flats and Salt Flats suitable non-breeding
Marine Intertidal Rocky Shoreline suitable breeding
Marine Intertidal Rocky Shoreline suitable non-breeding
Marine Intertidal Sandy Shoreline and/or Beaches, Sand Bars, Spits, Etc major breeding
Marine Intertidal Shingle and/or Pebble Shoreline and/or Beaches suitable breeding
Marine Intertidal Shingle and/or Pebble Shoreline and/or Beaches suitable non-breeding
Marine Intertidal Tidepools suitable breeding
Marine Intertidal Tidepools suitable non-breeding
Altitude 0 - 50 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact

Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Biological resource use Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals / Intentional use (species is the target) Timing Scope Severity Impact
Past, Unlikely to Return Majority (50-90%) Rapid Declines Past Impact
Stresses
Species mortality
Invasive and other problematic species, genes & diseases Problematic native species/diseases Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Decline Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Reduced reproductive success, 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

Utilisation

Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Pets Whole Adults and juveniles Wild International Non-trivial Recent
Wearing apparel, accessories Whole Adults and juveniles Wild Subsistence, National Non-trivial Historical
Wearing apparel, accessories Whole Adults and juveniles Wild International Non-trivial Historical

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Egretta rufescens. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 29/07/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 29/07/2014.

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 Near Threatened
Family Ardeidae (Herons)
Species name author (Gmelin, 1789)
Population size 10000-19999 mature individuals
Population trend Increasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 349,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Summary information on this species