Species Action Plans Slender-billed Curlew (Numenius tenuirostris)
There are very few recent records of this species and sightings have become more and more infrequent, presumably as a result of declines caused by habitat loss and exploitation. No regular breeding, passage or wintering population is known, and the number of remaining individuals must be tiny. For these reasons the species qualifies as Critically Endangered. [source: Birdlife.org]
[Slender-billed Curlew (Numenius tenuirostris) Europe 1996]
The Slender-billed Curlew is arguably the most threatened bird species in the western Palearctic; it is certainly the least well known of the region’s threatened birds, which greatly adds to the difficulty of conserving it. It appears to be the only bird species of the western Palearctic whose breeding grounds have remained unknown for the last 70 years. Thus, although its current population size is comparable with that of Zino’s Petrel Pterodroma madeira and Bald Ibis Geronticus eremita, because the Slender-billed Curlew’s present breeding grounds are unknown (as well , apparently, as most of the wintering areas), there is much less that can be done to help it. The conservation challenge is compounded by the fact that the identification of the species is not straightforward and that it is a medium- to long-range migrant, crossing many countries in which conservation action is needed. The species is globally threatened, having a Critical threat status (Collar et al. 1994), with a population recently estimated at 50-270 individuals (Gretton 1994). It is listed on Annex I of the EU Wild Birds Directive and of CITES, and on Appendix I of the Bonn Convention and Appendix II of the Bern Convention. A Memorandum of Understanding for the conservation of the species was developed during 1993-1994 by the Bonn Convention Secretariat. A wide range of activities was carried out during 1992-1994 across much of the species’ range, under the EU (ACNAT) project ?Preparation of a rescue plan for the Slender-billed Curlew? (European Commission 1994).
ADAM GRETTON (1996). INTERNATIONAL ACTION PLAN FOR THE SLENDER-BILLED CURLEW (Numenius tenuirostris)