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Semper's Warbler Leucopeza semperi
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Justification
This species has not been recorded with certainty since 1961, and there are few records from the 20th century despite being apparently more abundant before then. It may have been driven extinct by introduced mongooses, perhaps compounded by habitat loss. However, it possibly remains extant because some suitable habitat remains, searches have not been adequately extensive, and there have been a number of possible or tentative sightings. A tiny population is assumed to remain and therefore it is treated as Critically Endangered.

Taxonomic source(s)
AOU. 1998. Check-list of North American birds. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C.
Sibley, C. G.; Monroe, B. L. 1990. Distribution and taxonomy of birds of the world. Yale University Press, New Haven, USA.
Stotz, D. F.; Fitzpatrick, J. W.; Parker, T. A.; Moskovits, D. K. 1996. Neotropical birds: ecology and conservation. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

Identification
14.5 cm. Large, dull, long-legged warbler. Adult dark grey above and whitish below. Immature brownish-grey above with buffy underparts. Long, pale legs. Voice Song unknown. Call a scolding tuck-tick-tick-tuck. Hints Listen for calls from dense undergrowth.

Distribution and population
Leucopeza semperi is endemic to St Lucia, where it is extremely rare and there have been no confirmed records for many years. It eluded almost all 20th century efforts to find a population. There are a mere handful of reports since the 1920s and no certain records since 1961. Sightings in 1965, 1989, 1995 and 2003 have not been confirmed (Keith 1997, H. Temple in litt. 2003). It was apparently more abundant in the 19th century, and has clearly undergone a significant decline (Keith 1997). It possibly remains extant because some suitable habitat remains and searches have not been adequately extensive.

Population justification
Any remaining population is assumed to be tiny (numbering fewer than 50 individuals and mature individuals), with the last confirmed record in 1961.

Ecology
It is known from the undergrowth of montane and elfin forest. The ecology is virtually unknown, but it is apparently largely terrestrial and possibly even nests on the ground.

Threats
The introduction of mongooses in 1884 portended the disappearance of this species, as they probably preyed on adults (Keith 1997), nestlings and eggs (Curson et al. 1994). The decline may have been compounded by habitat loss, but suitable forest still remains on the island. Having a montane distribution that is close to the maximum altitude within its range, this species is potentially susceptible to climate change (BirdLife International unpublished data).

Conservation Actions Underway
There have been no targeted searches for the species in recent years. Conservation Actions Proposed
Survey to locate any remaining population.

References
Collar, N. J.; Gonzaga, L. P.; Krabbe, N.; Madroño Nieto, A.; Naranjo, L. G.; Parker, T. A.; Wege, D. C. 1992. Threatened birds of the Americas: the ICBP/IUCN Red Data Book. International Council for Bird Preservation, Cambridge, U.K.

Curson, J.; Quinn, D.; Beadle, D. 1994. New World warblers. A&C Black/Christopher Helm, London.

Keith, A. R. 1997. The birds of St Lucia, West Indies: an annotated check-list. British Ornithologists Union, Tring, UK.

Further web sources of information
Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) species/site profile. This species has been identified as an AZE trigger due to its IUCN Red List status and limited range.

Click here for more information about the Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE)

Detailed species account from the Threatened birds of the Americas: the BirdLife International Red Data Book (BirdLife International 1992). Please note taxonomic treatment and IUCN Red List category may have changed since publication.

Detailed species account from the Threatened birds of the Americas: the BirdLife International Red Data Book (BirdLife International 1992). Please note, taxonomic treatment and IUCN Red List category may have changed since publication.

Explore HBW Alive for further information on this species

Recuento detallado de la especie tomado del libro Aves Amenazadas de las Americas, Libro Rojo de BirdLife International (BirdLife International 1992). Nota: la taxonomoía y la categoría de la Lista Roja de la UICN pudo haber cambiado desde esta publicación.

Search for photos and videos, and hear sounds of this species from the Internet Bird Collection

Text account compilers
Bird, J., Butchart, S., Calvert, R., Pople, R., Sharpe, C J, Symes, A.

Contributors
Temple, H.

IUCN Red List evaluators
Butchart, S., Symes, A.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Leucopeza semperi. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 31/08/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 31/08/2014.

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 Parulidae (New World warblers)
Species name author Sclater, 1877
Population size 1-49 mature individuals
Population trend Unknown
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 1 km2
Country endemic? Yes
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species