Archived 2015 topics: Black-chested Honeyeater (Lichmera notabilis): downlist to Least Concern?

This discussion was first published as part of the 2013 Red List update, but remains open for comment to enable reassessment in 2015.

BirdLife species factsheet for Black-chested Honeyeater

Black-chested Honeyeater Lichmera notabilis is restricted to the small island of Wetar, Indonesia. It is currently classified as Near Threatened, approaching the thresholds for Vulnerable under criteria C1+2a(i), because it was thought to have a moderately small population (approaching as few as 10,000 mature individuals) and suffering slow declines owing to habitat loss and degradation.

However, recent information suggests that the population of this species may be greater than previously thought. A systematic survey by Trainor et al. (2009) on the birds of Wetar recorded this species as widespread and abundant in all tropical forests and areas of flowering Eucalyptus woodland. The population size was crudely estimated at c.500,000 pairs (Trainor et al. 2009) and it does not appear to be declining anywhere on the island (C. Trainor in litt. 2012). If this information is confirmed, the Black-chested Honeyeater would no longer approach the thresholds for Vulnerable, and thus, it would warrant downlisting to Least Concern on the IUCN Red List.

Comments on the proposed downlisting are welcome.

Reference:

Trainor, C. R., Imanuddin, Aldy, F., Verbelen, P. and Walker, J. S. (2009) The birds of Wetar, Banda Sea: one of Indonesia’s forgotten islands. Birding ASIA 12: 78-93.

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5 Responses to Archived 2015 topics: Black-chested Honeyeater (Lichmera notabilis): downlist to Least Concern?

  1. Andy Symes says:

    Preliminary proposals

    Based on available information, our preliminary proposal for the 2014 Red List is to pend the decision on Black-chested Honeyeater Lichmera nobilis and keep this discussion open until early 2015, while leaving the current Red List category unchanged in the 2014 update.

    There is now a period for further comments until the final deadline of 31 March, after which recommended categorisations will be put forward to IUCN.

    The final Red List categories will be published on the BirdLife and IUCN websites in mid-2014, following further checking of information relevant to the assessments by both BirdLife and IUCN.

  2. Andy Symes says:

    Recommended categorisation to be put forward to IUCN

    Following further review, there has been no change to our preliminary proposal for the 2014 Red List status of this species.

    This discussion will remain open for further comments and information until early 2015, and the current Red List category will remain unchanged in 2014.

  3. Colin Trainor says:

    Our survey in 2008 was of 44 days, with quite good coverage of the island [including about 100 km of walking to some quite difficult locations that will probably never be surveyed again] since then there have been briefer and geographically restricted surveys by Filip Verbelen over 5 days, Stijn C of c. 7 days….James Eaton/Rob Hutchinson/Frank Lambert with BirdTour Asia now 2-3 visits of c. 2 days at 1-2 coastal sites…..in 2010 I visited again for 2 weeks surveying from sea level to 1,100 m [the highest effort to date on the island].

    Ben King also got them in the far east in 2008, during a c. 5 days survey.

    Although still a little incomplete, there is an abundance of data to show that Black-chested Honeyeater is widespread, abundant in suitable habitat [one of the most numerically abundant birds in forest, and that most [c.>95%] of original habitat on island remains and is in good condition. Some ongoing illegal logging. Its under little threat of extinction over the coming decades, though mines/timber harvesting will convert some forest.

  4. Andy Symes (BirdLife) says:

    Preliminary proposals

    Based on available information, our preliminary proposal for the 2015 Red List would be to treat:

    Black-chested Honeyeater as Least Concern.

    There is now a period for further comments until the final deadline of 31 August, after which the recommended categorisation will be put forward to IUCN.

    The final Red List categories will be published on the BirdLife website in late October and on the IUCN website in November, following further checking of information relevant to the assessments by both BirdLife and IUCN.

  5. Andy Symes (BirdLife) says:

    Recommended categorisation to be put forward to IUCN

    Following further review, there have been no changes to our preliminary proposal for the 2015 Red List status of this species.

    The final categorisation will be published on the BirdLife website in late October and on the IUCN website in November, following further checking of information relevant to the assessment by BirdLife and IUCN.

Comments are closed.