This discussion was first published as part of the 2016 Red List update. At the time a decision regarding its status was pended, but to enable potential reassessment of this species as part of the 2017 Red List update this post remained open and the date of posting was updated.
BirdLife species factsheet for Maccoa Duck: http://www.birdlife.org/datazone/species/factsheet/22679820
Maccoa Duck is currently listed as Near Threatened owing to its moderately small population size and ongoing declines resulting from a variety of threats.
This species is found in two distinct populations in Africa; its northern population is found in in Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya and Tanzania; and the southern population is in Angola, Botswana, South Africa, Namibia and Zimbabwe. The total population for southern Africa is approximately 7,000-8,250 individuals, and the population estimate for East Africa has been given at 2,000-3,500 individuals (Berruti et al. 2005, 2007), with the Ethiopian population maybe as high as 500-2,000. However, the northern population has undergone a severe decline – up to 50% during the late 1990s and early 2000s, and in Kenya only 14 individuals were observed during a survey from December 2014 to July 2015 (G. Kung’u in litt. to P. Ndang’ang’a 2016). The Kenyan population may now be <50 individuals (D. Turner in litt. to P. Ndang’ang’a 2016); and there may only be a maximum of 100 individuals in Tanzania (D. Turner in litt to P. Ndang’ang’a 2016). Thus the East African population may in fact be far smaller than previous estimates and in fact may be <300 individuals (D. Turner in litt. to P. Ndang’ang’a 2016). The larger, southern population has been thought to be stable (Berruti et al. 2005), but declines may have begun (Berruti et al. 2007)
In the 2015 Eskom Red Data Book of Birds of South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland (Taylor 2015) the species is listed as regionally Near Threatened under criterion C1, with a population estimated at 4,500-5,500 mature individuals which is decreasing at an unknown rate.
The total rate of decline for the species is currently suspected to be slow. However, given that the population in East Africa may now be <300 individuals, the total population is suspected to be fewer than 10,000 individuals, and so fall in the range of 2,500-9,999 individuals; roughly equivalent to 1,650-6,700 mature individuals. With more accurate figures for declines this species may therefore qualify as Vulnerable under criterion C1 if estimated to be declining by >10% in three generations (18 years).
We request any further information regarding population size estimates and population trends for this species to help decide whether this species warrants uplisting.
Berruti, A.; Baker, N.; Buijs, D.; Colahan, B. D.; Davies, C.; Dellegn, Y.; Eksteen, J.; Kolberg, H.; Marchant, A. H.; Mpofu, Z.; Nantongo-Kalundu, P.; Nnyiti, P.; Pienaar, K.; Shaw, K.; Tyali, T.; van Niekerk, J.; Wheeler, M. J. 2005. International Maccoa Duck Oxyura maccoa Action Plan.
Berruti, A.; Baker, N.; Buijs, D.; Colahan, B.D.; Davies, C.; Dellegn, Y.; Eksteen, J.; Kolberg, H.; Marchant, A.; Mpofu, Z.; Nantongo-Kalundu, P.; Nnyiti, P.; Pienaar, K.; Shaw, K.; Tyali, T.; van Niekerk, J.; Wheeler, M.J.; Evans, S.W. 2007. International Single Species Action Plan for the conservation of the Maccoa Duck Oxyura maccoa. AEWA, Bonn.
Taylor, M. R.; Peacock, F.; Wanless, R. M. 2015. The 2015 Eskom Red Data Book of Birds of South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland. BirdLife South Africa, Johannesburg.