Initial deadline for comments: 31 January 2012 [note that this has been moved back by about two months].
Faichuk White-eye Rukia ruki is restricted to just four tiny islands in the Faichuk Group of Chuuk (=Truk) Lagoon in the Federated States of Micronesia. It is listed as Critically Endangered on the basis that its minute and fragmented range is in decline owing to on-going habitat loss. Its Extent of Occurrence (EOO) is estimated at just c.34 km2, while its Area of Occupancy (AOO) is estimated to be only c.4 km2.
This species’s range and habitat are thought to be in decline on the basis of past deforestation on many islands in Chuuk Lagoon. However, recent observations from Tol South suggest that little in the way of logging is now taking place there and that only subsistence-level timber extraction is occurring, owing to the topography of the island and areas of difficult terrain (C. Collins in litt. 2011). In addition, superstitious beliefs apparently prevent most islanders from visiting the top of the island (C. Collins in litt. 2011). As a result, the forests on the plateau of Tol South are apparently old-growth and relatively undisturbed (C. Collins in litt. 2007).
Further information is requested on the likely current trends in the species’s range and habitat. Any evidence that suggests the range, habitat and population are stable would probably make the species eligible for downlisting to Vulnerable under criteria D1 and D2, for which it would qualify based on a population estimate of fewer than 1,000 mature individuals and occurrence at fewer than six locations, which renders the species susceptible to stochastic events that could result in it being uplisted in a short period of time.