This is part of a consultation on the Red List implications of extensive changes to BirdLife’s taxonomy for passerines
Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International will soon publish the second volume of the HBW-BirdLife Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World, building off the Handbook of the Birds of the World series, and BirdLife’s annually updated taxonomic checklist.
The new Checklist will be based on the application of criteria for recognising species limits described by Tobias et al. (2010). Full details of the specific scores and the basis of these for each new taxonomic revision will be provided in the Checklist.
Following publication, an open and transparent mechanism will be established to allow people to comment on the taxonomic revisions or suggest new ones, and provide new information of relevance in order to inform regular updates. We are also actively seeking input via a discussion topic here regarding some potential taxonomic revisions that currently lack sufficient information.
The new Checklist will form the taxonomic basis of BirdLife’s assessments of the status of the world’s birds for the IUCN Red List. The taxonomic changes that will appear in volume 2 of the checklist (for passerines) will begin to be incorporated into the 2016 Red List update, with the remainder to be incorporated into subsequent Red List updates.
Preliminary Red List assessments have been carried out for the newly split or lumped taxa. We are now requesting comments and feedback on these preliminary assessments.
White-bellied Minivet Pericrocotus erythropygius is being split into P. erythropygius and P. albifrons, following the application of criteria set out by Tobias et al. (2010).
Prior to this taxonomic change, Pericrocotus erythropygius was listed as Least Concern on the basis that it did not approach the threshold for Vulnerable under any criterion. P. erythropygius (as now defined following the taxonomic change) is found in open habitats in west and central India, including grasslands, dry cultivated land and sometimes in semi-desert (Taylor 2016). Within its range it is uncommon to rare and very local (del Hoyo et al. 2005). However, in the absence of any substantial threat or suspected declines, it is thought that this species does not approach the threshold for Vulnerable under any criteria and so it is proposed that it be listed as Least Concern.
P. albifrons is uncommon to rare in the plains of Myanmar (Taylor 2016). It has a large range (Extent of Occurrence: 162,500km2) but it is suspected to have undergone a large decline, as the pre-split species had formerly been regarded as common in this country (Taylor 2016). We request further information about the threats that have affected this species, and any additional information regarding its population trend to see whether this species qualifies as, or approaches the threshold for, Vulnerable under criterion A2c.
del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A. and Christie, D. 2005. Handbook of the Birds of the World, vol. 10: Cuckoo-shrikes to Thrushes. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona, Spain.
Taylor, B. (2016). White-bellied Minivet (Pericrocotus erythropygius). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from http://www.hbw.com/node/57908 on 12 September 2016).
Tobias, J. A., Seddon, N., Spottiswoode, C. N., Pilgrim, J. D., Fishpool, L. D. C. and Collar, N. J. 2010. Quantitative criteria for species delimitation. Ibis 152: 724–746.