Archived 2015 topics: Sierra Madre Sparrow (Xenospiza baileyi): is it correctly listed as Endangered?

This discussion was first published as part of the 2012 Red List update, but remains open for comment to enable reassessment in 2015.

BirdLife species factsheet for Sierra Madre Sparrow

Sierra Madre Sparrow Xenospiza baileyi occupies a disjunct range in central Mexico, where it inhabits highland meadows and agricultural fields. It is listed as Endangered under criteria B1a+b(i,ii,iii,iv,v); B2a+b(i,ii,iii,iv,v), on the basis that it has an extremely small range, with an Extent of Occurrence (EOO) estimated at only 42 km2 and an Area of Occupancy (AOO) estimated to be only 9 km2, in which it is considered to occur at just two locations and there are on-going declines in the EOO, AOO, area, extent and/or quality of habitat, number of locations or subpopulations and number of mature individuals.

Although the range estimates for this species meet the thresholds for Critically Endangered, it does not qualify for this status because it is known from more than one location and its habitat was not considered to be severely fragmented. In terms of the IUCN criteria, a species’s habitat is deemed to be severely fragmented when over 50% is in patches too small to support viable populations. Recently, the habitat occupied by the southern population has been described as severely fragmented (A. Cruz-Nieto in litt. 2008). Remapping of the species’s range by BirdLife has resulted in a new estimated EOO of 70 km2, which still meets the threshold for Critically Endangered, and raises the question of whether the species should be uplisted.

Updated BirdLife range map for Sierra Madre Sparrow (click on map to see larger version)

Further detailed information on this species is requested in order to clarify its status. The locations of recent records would assist with the mapping of its range. In the meantime, we would welcome reviews of BirdLife’s new range map and details on the level of habitat fragmentation, more specifically the proportion in patches too small to support viable populations, as well as the number of locations the species is currently known from.

Gorrión serrano (Xenospiza baileyi): ¿está clasificada correctamente como en Peligro de Extinción?

Plazo inicial de comentarios: 31 de enero de 2012
Hoja de datos BirdLife del gorrión serrano

El gorrión serrano Xenospiza baileyi ocupa se distribuye de manera disyuntiva en el centro de México, donde habita las praderas altas y campos agrícolas. Es clasificada como En Peligro según los criterios B1a+b(i,ii,iii,iv,v); B2a+b(i,ii,iii,iv,v), debido a que tiene una distribución muy pequeña, con una Extensión de Ocurrencia (EOO) estimado en sólo 42 km2 y un Area de Ocupación (AOO) de sólo 9 km2, en la que se considera que ocurre en sólo dos localidades y siguen en declive la EOO, AOO, área, extensión y / o calidad del hábitat, el número de localidades o subpoblaciones y el número de individuos maduros.

Aunque se calcula que el área de disribución de esta especie alcanzan los umbrales de En Peligro Crítico, no califica para esta condición ya que se conoce de más de una localidad y su hábitat no se consideraba muy fragmentada. En cuanto a los criterios de la UICN, el hábitat de una especie se considera muy fragmentada, cuando más del 50% se ubica en parches demasiado pequeños para mantener poblaciones viables. Sin embargo, recientemente el hábitat ocupado por la población del sur ha sido descrito como muy fragmentada (A. Cruz-Nieto, in litt. 2008). Una recalculación del área de distribución de la especie por BirdLife ha resultado en una nueva EOO estimado de 70 km2, que aún cumple con el umbral de En Peligro Crítico, y plantea la cuestión de si la especie debe ser subida de categoría.

Actualizado mapa de distribución BirdLife del gorrión serrano (haga clic en el mapa para ver una versión más grande)

Se solicita información más detallada sobre esta especie con el fin de aclarar su situación. La ubicacion de los registros más recientes ayudaría con la cartografía de su distribución. Mientras tanto, sería muy bienvenida cualquier revision del nuevo mapa de BirdLife. Igualmente se solictan detalles sobre el nivel de fragmentación del hábitat, más concretamente, la proporción ubicada parches demasiado pequeños para mantener poblaciones viables, así como el número de localidades de las cuales se conoce la especie.

The following document was sent by Pronatura on 16 February 2012: Xenospiza baileyi Pronatura Feb12

This entry was posted in Americas, Archive, North America and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Archived 2015 topics: Sierra Madre Sparrow (Xenospiza baileyi): is it correctly listed as Endangered?

  1. The main habitat in la Cima is now planted with pines. The pines have more tahn 3 years old and get above meter from ground. If these pines survive, the Sierra MAdre Sparrow will be extripatride form this site, mean, gone.

  2. Joe Taylor says:

    The following comments by Humberto Berlanga, Vicente Rodríguez and Luis Antonio Sánchez-González were received on 4 February 2012:

    Xenospiza baileyi Sierra Madre Sparrow

    There are two disjunct populations of the Endangered Sierra madre sparrow: one located south of Mexico City, distributed among subalpine grasslands on Tlalpan and Milpa Alta districts, and a small patch on Estado de México. The second one is located in small patches of bunchgrasses near El Salto in the state of Durango. The general status of both populations is poorly known. Oliveras de Ita y Gómez de Silva (2002) studied the species territoriality and survivorship in one of the few habitat patches near México city (Tlalpan) and found very poor recruitment during the 1999-2000 breeding season. Considering habitat availability, these authors extrapolated density data, and estimated the total population present in the south of Valley of México of 5380-6150 adults in 2000.

    Habitat loss and transformation has continued everywhere, both in known and potential habitat of this highly sensitive stenotypic species, with unknown effects to date. However, in the last few years new records have been reported near but outside of formerly known areas of both populations, and other possible new records require to be confirmed.

    CONABIO, through the Coordination of the North American Bird Conservation Initiative in collaboration with UNAM and CORENA and with the support of Cornell Lab of Ornithology, has been working on a community-based species conservation project since 2008. The project is focused on preserving and restoring habitat of the Sierra madre sparrow with the involvement of landowners and managers. Main goals include raising awareness and pride for this bird from the local communities from San Pablo Oztotepec, who had implemented multiple habitat conservation and recovery actions in order to preserve the breeding habitat of these species. In 2011 members of the community were trained for bird monitoring in order to participate in 2012 in an effort conducted by CONABIO to assess the current population status of the species.

    Data gathered this year will provide appropriate information to assess the real status of the species, as well as key insights to define specific strategies for the conservation of the Sierra Madre Sparrow including the possibility of initiating a translocation project to re establish a new population in suitable historic habitat of the species.

    While this assessment is conducted and analyzed in combination with current habitat availability and the confirmation of new records, we suggest to maintain the species in its current status.

    Prepared by:
    Humberto Berlanga; Vicente Rodríguez & Luis Antonio Sánchez-González
    National Comission for the Knowledge and Use of Biodiversity (CONABIO). México

    • We just get a meeting last week for this species with Conabio (H. Berlanga, V. Rodriguez, Zoological of Chapultepec, Dc Bernal and Tierra de Aves A.C. M. Grosselet), we conclud that due to the drastic lost of habitat within its main territory (Southern part of Mexico City), It’s urgent to undertook action plan to its remain habitat and start captivity project to keep a safe population. This species have lost more than 50% of its very small habitat range in the last 10 years. The actual possible density is around 2 birds/ hect (Berlanga et al, com pers.), when Oliveras (2001) have 2,9 territories per hect. The increase crop field and not controled burn push this species close to extinction, at least in its last territories of Mexico city. it’s VERY urgent protect its habitat and a viable population for futher reintroduction projects.
      We suggest to maintain this species in critically endangered Species. May be close to extinction.

  3. Joe Taylor says:

    Pronatura have sent a document with information on this species, and this can be found just below the forum topic.

  4. Andy Symes says:

    Preliminary proposals

    Based on available information, our preliminary proposal for the 2014 Red List is to pend the decision on Sierra Madre Sparrow Xenospiza baileyi 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Andy Symes (BirdLife) says:

    Sierra Madre Sparrow
    Preliminary proposals

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

    Sierra Madre Sparrow as Endangered under criterion B1a+b(i,ii,iii,iv,v); B2a+b(i,ii,iii,iv,v).

    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.

  7. 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.