Initial deadline for comments: 31 January 2012.
Galapagos Martin Progne modesta occurs on the central and southern islands of the Galápagos Archipelago, where it frequents a wide range of habitats. It is currently listed as Vulnerable under criterion D1, on the basis that it is estimated to have a very small population (<1,000 mature individuals), but with no clear information on the population trend or potential threats.
Recent estimates, however, suggest that the population may number fewer than 500 birds (Wiedenfeld and Jiménez-Uzcátegui 2008, D. Wiedenfeld in litt. 2011). If evidence suggests that the population includes fewer than 250 mature individuals, the species may qualify as Endangered under criterion D1. If there is insufficient evidence on which to base a lower population estimate, it could nevertheless qualify as Endangered under criterion C2 if there is evidence of a continuing decline AND evidence that at least 95% of mature individuals are in a single sub-population (EN C2aii) or that all sub-populations number fewer than 250 mature individuals (EN C2ai).
For the purposes of Red List assessments, sub-populations are defined as geographically or otherwise distinct groups between which there is little or no demographic or genetic exchange, i.e. typically one successful migrant per year or less.
We invite comments on the status of this species, particularly information on the population size and trend: are there likely to be fewer than 250 mature individuals, and can a continuing population decline be inferred in the present or projected in the future?
Wiedenfeld, D. A. and Jiménez-Uzcátegui, G. A. (2008) Critical problems for bird conservation in the Galápagos Islands. Cotinga 29: 22-27