Archived 2016 topics: Blackish Cinclodes (Cinclodes antarcticus) is being split: request for information

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.

Blackish Conclodes Cinclodes antarcticus is being split into C. antarcticus and C. maculirostris, following the application of criteria set out by Tobias et al. (2010).

Prior to this taxonomic change, C. antarcticus was listed as Least Concern, on the basis that it was not thought to approach the threshold for Vulnerable under any criteria. C. antarcticus (as defined following the taxonomic change) is only found in the Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas), while C. maculirostris is found at the extreme south of South America, on the Brecknock Peninsula, Dawson Island, Navarino Island, Staten Island and the Cape Horn Archipelago.

Both newly split species are at risk from invasive predators such as cats and rats (Remsen and Bonan 2016), which has led to the species only being found where these do not occur (Remsen and Bonan 2016). Both species may be abundant at the localities where they have not been extirpated by invasives, but the tameness of these species means that once an invasive predator arrives at one of these localities it can quickly remove the population of these species. As such it is believed that the population of both these species may be declining at least at a moderate rate, and so may warrant listing as Near Threatened under criteria A2e+3e+4e, but we request further information regarding population trends to see whether these species may warrant listing under a separate category.


Remsen, J.V., Jr and Bonan, A. 2016. Blackish Cinclodes (Cinclodes antarcticus). 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 on 22 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.

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1 Response to Archived 2016 topics: Blackish Cinclodes (Cinclodes antarcticus) is being split: request for information

  1. James Westrip (BirdLife) says:

    Based on available information, our preliminary proposal for the 2016 Red List would be to list:

    C. antarcticus and C. maculirostris as Near Threatened under criteria A2e+3e+4e.

    There is now a period for further comments until the final deadline of 28 October, 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 2016 Red List categories will be published on the BirdLife and IUCN
    websites in early December, following further checking of information relevant to the assessments by both BirdLife and IUCN.

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