Initial deadline for comments: 31 January 2012.
White-necklaced Partridge Arborophila gingica is endemic to the mountains of south-eastern China, where it inhabits broadleaved, mixed broadleaved and coniferous forests, bamboo and scrub at elevations between 500 and 1,700 m. It is currently listed as Vulnerable under criterion C2a(i), on the basis that its population is thought to include fewer than 10,000 mature individuals, with no single subpopulation numbering more than 1,000 individuals, and is inferred to be in continuing decline owing to habitat loss and fragmentation through conversion to agriculture and logging for timber, coupled with hunting for food and trade.
The estimate of this species’s population size has been precautionarily maintained at below 10,000 mature individuals, owing in part to the severe fragmentation of its habitats. However, a recent study (He et al. 2007) suggests that this might be an underestimate. Densities of up to 8-10 birds/km2 were recorded in some areas and the study suggests that the species may be distributed throughout Fujian province, having been recorded along the coast from Fuding and Ningde, the very north-east at Fuzhow and Fuqing, Putian in the central eastern part of the province, Xiamen and Zhao’an in the south, along the whole of the Wuyishan range in the north and the north-west of the province at Tai’ning, Ninghua in the west and Yongding in the very south (He et al. 2007). The species may also be regular in foothill forest at elevations below 150 m in coastal areas, and range up to 1,900 m in Wuyishan (He et al. 2007).
Apparently there has been no over-arching study of population densities and total population size for this species, thus further information is required to help assess whether the species actually numbers more than 10,000 mature individuals and therefore approaches the thresholds for Vulnerable under criterion C2a(i) and should be downlisted to Near Threatened. Further information is also requested on the severity of threats and likely subpopulation structure (i.e., the number of subpopulations and maximum number of individuals in one subpopulation).
He Fen-qi, Jiang Hang-dong and Lin Jian-sheng (2007) The occurrence of the White-necklaced Partridge in Fujian of SE China. Chin. J. Zool. 42: 147-148.