Archived 2020 topic: Yellow-eared Parrot (Ognorhynchus icterotis): revise global status?

BirdLife species factsheet for Yellow-eared Parrot

Yellow-eared Parrot (Ognorhynchus icterotis) was once abundant across the Andes from northern Colombia to north-western Ecuador. However, habitat loss and subsequent lack of nest site availability as well as hunting led to its almost becoming extinct by the end of the 20th century (Salaman et al. 2019). The species has not been recorded in Ecuador since the 1990s, and only in 1997 a small flock was rediscovered in Colombia (Krabbe and Sornoza 1996, Salaman et al. 1999). Since then, intense conservation efforts aiming at protecting and restoring habitat and at raising awareness among the local population caused an exceptional recovery and increase in population size. From the initial 81 individuals that were rediscovered in 1999, the species increased to 2,600 individuals in 2019 (Salaman et al. 2019).

Yellow-eared Parrot inhabits montane and elfin forest at 1,200-3,400 m. For nesting, roosting and feeding, it is highly dependent on the wax pam Ceroxylon quindiunense (Juniper and Parr 1998, Salaman et al. 1999, 2019).

Yellow-eared Parrot is currently listed as Endangered under Criterion D (BirdLife International 2020). However, the rapid population increase in recent years suggests that the species may warrant a change in Red List status. Therefore, it will be re-assessed against all Red List criteria:

Criterion A – After drastic population declines to very low numbers by the end of the 20th century, the species has since been undergoing an extraordinary recovery and population increase, re-colonising much of its former range. Yellow-eared Parrot therefore qualifies as Least Concern under Criterion A.

Criterion B – The newly calculated Extent of Occurrence (EOO) for this species is 44,300 km2. This is too large to meet the threshold for listing as threatened under Criterion B1, and thus the species is considered Least Concern under this criterion. The Area of Occupancy (AOO) has not been calculated according to IUCN Guidelines (see IUCN Standards and Petitions Committee 2019); hence the species cannot be assessed against Criterion B2.

Criterion C – The global population is currently estimated at 2,600 individuals, which include at least 1,000 mature individuals (Salaman et al. 2019). Even though these numbers are small, the species is increasing rapidly, and as such it is considered Least Concern under Criterion C.

Criterion D – The population is estimated to number 2,600 individuals, of which at least 1,000 are mature (Salaman et al. 2019). With a population size of 1,000 mature individuals, the species would just cross the threshold for downlisting to a non-threatened category. However, for genuine changes in the population size, including a population recovery as experienced by Yellow-eared Parrot, the species can only be moved into a lower threat category when the threshold for the higher category has not been met for five years or more, i.e. when it has qualified for the lower category for at least five years (IUCN Standards and Petitions Committee 2019). Therefore, in order to assess Yellow-eared Parrot against Criterion D1, the population size five years ago, in 2015, is of relevance.

We have no exact information on the population size in 2015. In 2014 however, the population numbered c. 1,400 individuals (P. Salaman in litt. 2019). We know furthermore that in 2019, between 1/3 and 1/2 of all individuals were mature. Assuming that this proportion remained unchanged over the last five years, the population may have numbered around 500 mature individuals in 2014. Assuming further that the population has been increasing exponentially between 2014 and 2019, the population may have numbered c. 575 mature individuals in 2015.

Consequently, as the population numbered less than 1,000 mature individuals five years ago, the species does not yet qualify for downlisting to Near Threatened under Criterion D1. Nevertheless, as the population has been numbering between 251 and 1,000 mature individuals for at least five years, it now qualifies for listing as Vulnerable under Criterion D1.

Criterion E – To the best of our knowledge no quantitative analysis of extinction risk has been conducted for this species. Therefore, it cannot be assessed against this criterion.

Therefore, it is suggested that Yellow-eared Parrot (Ognorhynchus icteroris) be listed as Vulnerable under Criterion D1. We welcome any comments on the proposed listing and specifically ask for information on the population size in 2015.

Please note that this topic is not designed to be a general discussion about the ecology of the species, rather a discussion of its Red List status. Therefore, please make sure your comments are relevant to the discussion outlined in the topic. By submitting a comment, you confirm that you agree to the Comment Policy.

An information booklet on the Red List Categories and Criteria can be downloaded here and the Red List Criteria Summary Sheet can be downloaded here. Detailed guidance on IUCN Red List terms and definitions and the application of the Red List Categories and Criteria can be downloaded here.

References

BirdLife International. 2020. Species factsheet: Ognorhynchus icterotis. http://www.birdlife.org (Accessed 15 April 2020).

IUCN Standards and Petitions Committee. 2019. Guidelines for using the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria. Version 14. http://www.iucnredlist.org/documents/RedListGuidelines.pdf.

Juniper, T.; Parr, M. 1998. Parrots: a guide to the parrots of the world. Pica Press, Robertsbridge, UK.

Krabbe, N.; Sornoza, F. 1996. The last Yellow-eared Parrots Ognorhynchus icterotis in Ecuador? Cotinga: 25-26.

Salaman, P.; Cortés, A.; Waugh, D. 2019. Back from the brink: How the recovery of the Yellow-eared Parrot united a nation. Conservación Colombiana 26: 21-35.

Salaman, P. G. W.; López-Lanús, B.; Krabbe, N. 1999. Critically endangered: Yellow-eared Parrot Ognorhynchus icterotis in Colombia. Cotinga 11: 39-41

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11 Responses to Archived 2020 topic: Yellow-eared Parrot (Ognorhynchus icterotis): revise global status?

  1. Given that the gross of the species’ population occurs in Colombia, I consider that Renjifo’s et al. (2016) evaluation of the risk of extinction of this parrot in Colombia is perhaps the most important review of its conservation status. That document should be consulted and cited.

    Renjifo, L. M.; Amaya-Villarreal, A. M.; Burbano-Giron, J.; Velasquez-Tibata, J. 2016. Libro rojo de aves de Colombia, Volumen II: Ecosistemas abiertos, secos, insulares, acuaticos continentales, marinos, tierras altas del Darien y Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta y bosques humedos del centro, norte y oriente del pais. Editorial Pontificia Universidad Javeriana e Instituto Alexander von Humboldt. Bogota, Colombia.

    • Corrigendum:
      The recommended reference is:
      Renjífo, L. M.; Gómez, M. F.; Velásquez-Tibatá, J.; Amaya-Villareal, A. M.; Kattan, G. H.; Amaya-Espinel, J. D.; Burbano-Girón, J. 2014. Libro rojo de aves de Colombia, Volumen I: bosques húmedos de los Andes y la costa Pacífica. Editorial Pontificia Universidad Javeriana and Instituto Alexander von Humboldt. Bogotá, Colombia.

    • Red List Team (BirdLife International) says:

      Thank you very much for your comment. We have indeed consulted the Colombian Red List for its comprehensive information on the ecology and threats of the Yellow-eared Parrot, as well as on the conservation actions taken that led to the extraordinary recovery of the population. To account for the rapid population increase of the species as well as the discovery of further populations, in the assessment of the extinction risk we additionally included recent population data, as published in Salaman et al. 2019.

  2. Falta solicitar información de los reportes de la fundación proaves de los censos que realiza en sus reservas.
    Aqui habria mas informacion para tener en cuenta
    Incluso hay reportes de la Universidad Distrital, quien tiene una reserva que protege y tiene nidos artificiales del loro orejiamarillo

    http://repository.udistrital.edu.co/bitstream/11349/5799/1/RuizGonz%C3%A1lezJohannNikolai2017.pdf

    https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/8961/531bdf8f05bcc0ec597b95ab7238f6c5fad2.pdf

    • Red List Team (BirdLife International) says:

      Thank you very much for suggesting these references! We will make sure to include all relevant information in the updated factsheet of the species.

  3. Copiado de / copied from: Alex Cortés, Juan Carlos Luna, Andrea Borrero, y Juan Lazaro Toro (2020) Evaluación de especies de aves amenazadas en Colombia / Evaluation of Threatened Birds Species in Colombia. Conservación Colombiana 27: 3-31.

    “Salaman, Cortés y Waugh (2019) publicaron el resumen completo de veinte años de esfuerzos de conservación para Ognorhynchus icterotis gracias a la Fundación ProAves y muchas otras entidades, comunidades y autoridades en Colombia.

    La recuperación de la especie es uno de los esfuerzos más excepcionales para una especie CR en América Latina continental y unió a una nación para salvarla. Si bien ProAves está encantado de que la especie continúe recuperándose, nos preocupa que la única población en la ladera oriental de la Cordillera Oriental en Cubarral esté en riesgo ya que hay una disminución significativa en la población desde un máximo de 70 aves contadas en 2009, a 33 individuales en 2016, a 15 individuales en 2019 (de 19 listas) y un máximo de 3 individuales en 2020 (5 listas). No tenemos claro por qué la disminución, pero la pérdida de hábitat y la caza no son un problema importante aquí ya que la población local está protegida y las acciones de conservación se han implementado gracias a grupos locales.

    Ese artículo proporciona información detallada que la especie merece consideración para Vulnerable o Casi amenazada, que estamos de acuerdo con cumplir Preocupación Menor en el Criterio A, B, C. Según el Criterio D, si bien había al menos 1,000 individuos maduros en 2019 (Salaman et al.2019), como se señaló anteriormente, para que la especie se traslade a una categoría de amenaza inferior, de antemano el umbral para la categoría superior se ha cumplido cinco años o más. El tamaño de la población de Ognorhynchus en 2015 fue de aprox. 650-750 individuos maduros califican para ser listados como Vulnerables bajo el Criterio D1.

    Por lo tanto, ProAves recomienda que Ognorhynchus icterotis sea listada como Vulnerable

    Referencias
    Salaman, P.; Cortés, A.; Waugh, D. 2019. De vuelta al borde: cómo la recuperación del loro de orejas amarillas unió a una nación. Conservación Colombiana 26: 21-35.”

  4. Copiado de / copied from: Alex Cortés, Juan Carlos Luna, Andrea Borrero, y Juan Lazaro Toro (2020) Evaluación de especies de aves amenazadas en Colombia / Evaluation of Threatened Birds Species in Colombia. Conservación Colombiana 27: 3-31.

    “The comprehensive summary of twenty years of conservation efforts for Ognorhynchus icterotis thanks to Fundación ProAves and countless other entities, communities and authorities in Colombia was published by Salaman, Cortés and Waugh (2019).

    The recovery of the species is one of the most exceptional efforts for a CR species in mainland Latin America and united a nation to save the species. While ProAves is thrilled that the species continues to recover, we are worried that the sole population on the eastern slope of the Cordillera Oriental at Cubarral is at risk as there is a significant decline in the population from a high of 70 birds counted in 2009 to 33 in 2016, a maximum of 15 individuals in 2019 (from 19 checklists), and a maximum of 3 individuals in 2020 (5 checklists). We are unclear why the decrease, but habitat loss and hunting are not a major issue here as the local population is protected and conservation action have been implemented thanks to local groups.

    That article provides detailed information that the species warrants consideration for Vulnerable or Near Threatened which we agree with meeting Least Concern under Criterion A, B, C. Under Criterion D, while there were at least 1,000 mature individuals in 2019 (Salaman et al. 2019), as noted above, for the species to be moved into a lower threat category the threshold for the higher category has been met five years or more beforehand. The Ognorhynchus population size in 2015 was approx. 650-750 mature individuals so qualifies for listing as Vulnerable under Criterion D1.

    ProAves recommends that Ognorhynchus icterotis be listed as Vulnerable under Criteria D1.

    References
    Salaman, P.; Cortés, A.; Waugh, D. 2019. Back from the brink: How the recovery of the Yellow-eared Parrot united a nation. Conservación Colombiana 26: 21-35.”

  5. Red List Team (BirdLife International) says:

    Many thanks to everyone who has contributed to this discussion. We greatly appreciate the time and effort invested by so many people in commenting. The window for consultation is now closed. We will analyse and interpret the new information and post a preliminary decision on this species’s Red List status on this page in early July.

    Thank you once again,
    BirdLife Red List Team

  6. Red List Team (BirdLife International) says:

    Preliminary proposal

    Based on available information, our preliminary proposal for the 2020 Red List would be to list Yellow-eared Parrot as Vulnerable under Criterion D1.

    There is now a period for further comments until the final deadline in mid-July, after which the recommended categorisations will be put forward to IUCN.

    Please note that we will then only post final recommended categorisations on forum discussions where these differ from the initial proposal.

    The final 2020 Red List categories will be published on the BirdLife and IUCN websites in December 2020/January 2021, following further checking of information relevant to the assessments by both BirdLife and IUCN.

  7. Sara Lara says:

    Gracias por esta gran noticia, nos alegra mucho la disminución del estado de amenaza para Ognorhynchus. Es reconfortante saber que mientras para la mayoría de las especies evaluadas, el cambio de estado de amenaza se basa en datos recientes, en este caso la disminución se debe a las acciones de conservación que ayudaron a la recuperación de la especie. Estamos orgullosos de que Ognorhynchus haya tenido un cambio positivo genuino gracias a los 20 años de esfuerzos de conservación de ProAves y de muchas otras organizaciones, individuos, comunidades e instituciones. Es importante reconocer el apoyo y la participación de todos los colombianos en la protección del loro.
    ~~~~~~~
    Thank you for this great news, we are very pleased with the decreased threat status for Ognorhynchus. It is comforting to know that while for most species evaluated, the change in threat status is based on new data, in this case the decrease is due to conservation actions that helped the species recover. We are proud that Ognorhynchus has had a genuine positive change thanks to 20 years of conservation efforts by ProAves and many other organizations, individuals, communities and institutions. It is important to recognize the support and participation of all Colombians in the protection of this parrot.

  8. Red List Team (BirdLife International) says:

    Recommended categorisation to be put forward to IUCN

    The final categorisation for this species has not changed. Black-billed Amazon is recommended to be listed as Vulnerable under Criterion D1.

    Many thanks for everyone who contributed to the 2020 GTB Forum process. The final 2020 Red List categories will be published on the BirdLife and IUCN websites in December 2020/January 2021, following further checking of information relevant to the assessments by both BirdLife and IUCN.

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