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Red List Index (impacts of invasive alien species)

Key indicator facts

Indicator type

Pressure

Applicable for national use

Yes

Indicator classification

Operational and included in the CBD's list of indicators

Indicator type

Pressure

Applicable for national use

Yes

Indicator classification

Operational and included in the CBD's list of indicators

Last update

2016

Coverage

Global

Availability

Freely available

Partners

Issg logo

IUCN Invasive Species Specalist Group

Birdlife aug2013

BirdLife International

Iucn logo en

IUCN

Nslogocolortagtrans

NatureServe

Zsl logo stacked cmyk

Zoological Society of London

Contact point

Indicator description

This indicator shows trends in the status of all birds worldwide driven only by the negative impacts of invasive alien species or the positive impacts of their control. It is based on BirdLife International’s assessments of extinction risk for all birds for the IUCN Red List, specifically the number of species in each Red List category of extinction risk, and the number moving categories between assessments owing to genuine improvement or deterioration in status driven by impacts of invasive alien species or their control. All other changes are excluded, whether from improved knowledge, or genuine impacts of other threats or their control. Trends for mammals and amphibians will be added when the index is updated in 2017.

Related Aichi Targets

Primary target

9

Target 9:

By 2020, invasive alien species and pathways are identified and prioritized, priority species are controlled or eradicated, and measures are in place to manage pathways to prevent their introduction and establishment.

Primary target

9

Target 9:

By 2020, invasive alien species and pathways are identified and prioritized, priority species are controlled or eradicated, and measures are in place to manage pathways to prevent their introduction and establishment.

9

Related SDGs

E sdg goals icons individual rgb 15

GOAL 15 - Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss.

Target 15.8| Relevant indicator

By 2020, introduce measures to prevent the introduction and significantly reduce the impact of invasive alien species on land and water ecosystems and control or eradicate the priority species.

E sdg goals icons individual rgb 15

GOAL 15 - Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss.

E sdg goals icons individual rgb 15

Other related MEAs and processes

Cms logo blue4c

CMS

Target 8| Relevant indicator

The conservation status of threatened migratory species has considerably improved throughout their range.

Indicator icon

IPBES Global Assessment Chapters

Chapter 2| Official indicator

Status and trends; indirect and direct drivers of change

Indicator icon

IPBES Regional Assessment Chapters

Chapter 3| Official indicator

Status, trends and future dynamics of biodiversity and ecosystems underpinning nature’s benefits to people

Chapter 4| Official indicator

Direct and indirect drivers of change in the context of different perspectives of quality of life

Ramsar.logo

Ramsar

Target 4| Relevant indicator

Invasive alien species and pathways of introduction and expansion are identified and prioritized, priority invasive alien species are controlled or eradicated, and management responses are prepared and implemented to prevent their introduction and establishment.

Cms logo blue4c

CMS

Indicator icon

IPBES Global Assessment Chapters

Indicator icon

IPBES Regional Assessment Chapters

Ramsar.logo

Ramsar

Cms logo blue4c
Indicator icon
Indicator icon
Ramsar.logo

Themes

Bip species

Partners

Issg logo
Birdlife aug2013
Iucn logo en
Nslogocolortagtrans
Zsl logo stacked cmyk

Key indicator facts

Indicator type

Pressure

Applicable for national use

Yes

Indicator classification

Operational and included in the CBD's list of indicators

Indicator type

Pressure

Applicable for national use

Yes

Indicator classification

Operational and included in the CBD's list of indicators

Last update

2016

Coverage

Global

Availability

Freely available

Indicator description

This indicator shows trends in the status of all birds worldwide driven only by the negative impacts of invasive alien species or the positive impacts of their control. It is based on BirdLife International’s assessments of extinction risk for all birds for the IUCN Red List, specifically the number of species in each Red List category of extinction risk, and the number moving categories between assessments owing to genuine improvement or deterioration in status driven by impacts of invasive alien species or their control. All other changes are excluded, whether from improved knowledge, or genuine impacts of other threats or their control. Trends for mammals and amphibians will be added when the index is updated in 2017.

Contact point

Graphs / Diagrams

Figure 1. Red List Index for the world’s birds (9869 species) showing trends in status driven by the impacts of invasive alien species or their control. Source: McGeoch et al. 2010, update provided by S. Butchart, 2014.

Current storyline

Invasive alien species (IAS) are plants, animals or micro-organisms outside of their natural geographic range whose introduction and or spread threatens biodiversity, food security, human health, trade, transport and or economic development. They pose the second biggest threat to biodiversity globally, and in certain ecosystems notably islands, the greatest threat to biodiversity. IAS have reached all corners of the globe and impact biodiversity in many ways. The cost of damage caused by invasive species is estimated to be US$ 1.4 trillion per annum – close to 5% of global GDP.

A Red List Index value of 1.0 equates to all species being categorized as Least Concern, and hence that none are expected to go extinct in the near future. A Red List Index value of zero indicates that all species have gone extinct. A downwards trend in the graph line (i.e. decreasing Red List Index values) means that the expected rate of species extinctions is increasing i.e. that the rate of biodiversity loss is increasing.

As this represents a more restricted subset of the global RLI dataset, in some countries there may be insufficient data for a meaningful index to be disaggregated at the national scale. In such cases it is better to calculate the index based on repeated assessments of national extinction risk based on national Red Lists, if these are available.

Red List Indices show that the extinction risk of birds is increasing over time. Analyses of the drivers of these shifts in status show that for birds, invasive alien species are having a net negative impact. Although some threatened species have improved in status (as a result of successful control or eradication of invasive alien species), more have been uplisted to higher categories of threat owing to the negative impacts of invasives.


Figure 2. Percentage of 9869 bird species that qualified for genuine changes in IUCN Red List category between 1998 and 2012 owing to impacts of invasive alien species or their control, distinguishing those for which invasive alien species were the primary or secondary driver of the change in status. Source: Butchart et al, 2010, update provided by S. Butchart, 2014.

The indicator is developed by IUCN and BirdLife International.

Underlying data come from the IUCN Red List, which is developed by IUCN and the Red List Partnership (Arizona State University, BirdLife International, Botanic Gardens Conservation International, Conservation International, NatureServe, Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, Sapienza University of Rome, Texas A&M University, and The Zoological Society of London.

Sampled Red List assessments for plants, which will in due course feed into the RLI, are coordinated by Royal Botanic Gardens Kew.

Individual logos shown are those for Red List Partners who are also BIP partners.

Data and methodology

Coverage:

Global time series (1980 onwards, varying by taxonomic group. Aggregate index from 1993).

Regional/ National time series (time periods variable).

Scale: Aggregated from species level data which may be collected nationally, regionally and/or globally.

Time series available: 1980 –2016.

Next planned update: Updates are released annually.

Possible disaggregations: This is a dissaggregation of the Red List Index.

Methodology: The RLI shows trends in the status of all birds worldwide driven only by the negative impacts of invasive alien species or the positive impacts of measures to control invasive alien species. It is based on data from the IUCN Red List, specifically the number of species in each Red List category of extinction risk, and the number moving categories between assessments owing to genuine improvement or deterioration in status driven by impacts pollution or its control. All other changes are excluded, whether from improved knowledge, or genuine impacts of other threats or their control. Trends for mammals and amphibians will be added when the index is updated in 2017.

National use of indicator

The Red List Index is expressed globally, but may be applied regionally or nationally. National RLIs can be calculated either by disaggregating the global indices, or by repeatedly assessing extinction risk at the national scale (Bubb et al 2009). National indices based on national assessments of extinction risk are available for an increasing number of taxa and countries (see http://www.iucnredlist.org/about/publication/red-l...) while many other countries have completed national red lists (see www.nationalredlist.org), but not yet repeated these to produce an RLI.

Such national RLIs may be more sensitive than globally downscaled RLIs. However, they come with the disadvantage that their trends may be driven by changes in status of species with a trivial proportion of their global population within a given country (Rodrigues et al. 2014). This is because national RLIs do not take into account the fact that different countries have different levels of global responsibility towards the conservation of the species they harbour.

For example, the return of the Osprey Pandion haliaetus to Denmark as a breeding species contributed to this country’s improving national RLI, but was inconsequential to the global RLI, because Denmark holds a tiny fraction of this widespread species’ population. In contrast, an improvement in the conservation status of Albert’s Lyrebird Menura alberti in Australia (from Vulnerable to Near Threatened) is globally significant, because this species is a national endemic. Thus, a country can have an improving national index while making a negative contribution to the global RLI, if improvements concern mainly species that are marginally represented within the country and deteriorations species for which the country is highly responsible (Rodrigues et al. 2014). To overcome this issue, national RLIs (disaggregated from the global RLI for all birds, mammals, amphibians, cycads and corals) weighted by the proportion of each species’ global distribution within the country have been calculated for all countries worldwide (UNSD 2016; see the Country Profiles at https://www.ibat-alliance.org/ibat-conservation/login).

More information about producing national RLIs can be found in the publication, IUCN Red List Index – Guidance for National and Regional Use available from: http://intranet.iucn.org/webfiles/doc/SpeciesProg/RLI_Guidelines_Final_4march09.pdf.

At a regional scale, indicators have been produced for Europe through the Streamlining European 2010 Biodiversity Indicators project (http://www.eea.europa.eu/highlights/publications/progress-towards-the-european-2010-biodiversity-target/).

Further resources

Key indicator facts

Indicator type

Pressure

Applicable for national use

Yes

Indicator classification

Operational and included in the CBD's list of indicators

Indicator type

Pressure

Applicable for national use

Yes

Indicator classification

Operational and included in the CBD's list of indicators

Last update

2016

Coverage

Global

Availability

Freely available

Partners

Issg logo

IUCN Invasive Species Specalist Group

Birdlife aug2013

BirdLife International

Iucn logo en

IUCN

Nslogocolortagtrans

NatureServe

Zsl logo stacked cmyk

Zoological Society of London

Contact point