Pluvialis squatarola 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Charadriiformes Charadriidae

Scientific Name: Pluvialis squatarola (Linnaeus, 1758)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Grey Plover, Black-bellied Plover
French Pluvier argenté
Taxonomic Source(s): Cramp, S. and Simmons, K.E.L. (eds). 1977-1994. Handbook of the birds of Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The birds of the western Palearctic. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2017
Date Assessed: 2016-10-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Contributor(s): Dowsett, R.J.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Ashpole, J, Butchart, S., Ekstrom, J., Malpas, L.
This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is very large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.

Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Countries occurrence:
Afghanistan; Albania; Algeria; Angola; Anguilla; Antigua and Barbuda; Argentina; Armenia; Aruba; Australia; Austria; Azerbaijan; Bahamas; Bahrain; Bangladesh; Barbados; Belarus; Belgium; Belize; Benin; Bermuda; Bolivia, Plurinational States of; Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Brazil; British Indian Ocean Territory; Brunei Darussalam; Bulgaria; Cambodia; Cameroon; Canada; Cape Verde; Cayman Islands; Chile; China; Colombia; Comoros; Congo; Congo, The Democratic Republic of the; Costa Rica; Côte d'Ivoire; Croatia; Cuba; Curaçao; Cyprus; Czech Republic; Denmark; Djibouti; Dominica; Dominican Republic; Ecuador; Egypt; El Salvador; Equatorial Guinea; Eritrea; Estonia; Ethiopia; Finland; France; French Guiana; Gabon; Gambia; Germany; Ghana; Greece; Grenada; Guadeloupe; Guam; Guatemala; Guinea; Guinea-Bissau; Guyana; Haiti; Honduras; Hong Kong; Hungary; India; Indonesia; Iran, Islamic Republic of; Iraq; Ireland; Israel; Italy; Jamaica; Japan; Jordan; Kazakhstan; Kenya; Korea, Democratic People's Republic of; Korea, Republic of; Kuwait; Kyrgyzstan; Latvia; Lebanon; Liberia; Libya; Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of; Madagascar; Malaysia; Maldives; Malta; Marshall Islands; Martinique; Mauritania; Mauritius; Mayotte; Mexico; Micronesia, Federated States of ; Mongolia; Montenegro; Montserrat; Morocco; Mozambique; Myanmar; Namibia; Nepal; Netherlands; New Caledonia; New Zealand; Nicaragua; Nigeria; Northern Mariana Islands; Norway; Oman; Pakistan; Palau; Palestinian Territory, Occupied; Panama; Papua New Guinea; Paraguay; Peru; Philippines; Poland; Portugal; Puerto Rico; Qatar; Réunion; Romania; Russian Federation (Central Asian Russia, Eastern Asian Russia, European Russia); Saint Barthélemy; Saint Kitts and Nevis; Saint Lucia; Saint Martin (French part); Saint Pierre and Miquelon; Saint Vincent and the Grenadines; Saudi Arabia; Senegal; Serbia; Seychelles; Sierra Leone; Singapore; Sint Maarten (Dutch part); Slovakia; Slovenia; Solomon Islands; Somalia; South Africa; South Sudan; Spain; Sri Lanka; Sudan; Suriname; Sweden; Switzerland; Syrian Arab Republic; Taiwan, Province of China; Tajikistan; Tanzania, United Republic of; Thailand; Timor-Leste; Togo; Trinidad and Tobago; Tunisia; Turkey; Turkmenistan; Turks and Caicos Islands; Uganda; Ukraine; United Arab Emirates; United Kingdom; United States; Uruguay; Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of; Viet Nam; Virgin Islands, British; Virgin Islands, U.S.; Western Sahara; Yemen; Zimbabwe
Botswana; Burundi; Chad; Christmas Island; Cook Islands; Faroe Islands; Fiji; Gibraltar; Greenland; Iceland; Lao People's Democratic Republic; Lesotho; Luxembourg; Malawi; Mali; Nauru; Niger; Rwanda; Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha; Sao Tomé and Principe; Svalbard and Jan Mayen; Swaziland; Zambia
Additional data:
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO):NoEstimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:17300000
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO):UnknownExtreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO):No
Continuing decline in number of locations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in the number of locations:No
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The global population is estimated at 738,000-935,000 (Wetlands International 2015). National population estimates include: c.10,000 individuals on migration and c.1,000-10,000 wintering individuals in China; c.50-10,000 wintering individuals in Taiwan; c.1,000-10,000 individuals on migration and c.1,000-10,000 wintering individuals in Korea; c.1,000-10,000 individuals on migration and c.1,000-10,000 wintering individuals in Japan, and c.10,000-100,000 breeding pairs and c.1,000-10,000 individuals on migration in Russia. The European population is estimated at 5,000-10,000 pairs, which equates to 10,000-20,000 mature individuals (BirdLife International 2015).

Trend Justification:  The overall population trend is decreasing, although some populations have unknown trends (Wetlands International 2015). This species has had stable population trends over the last 40 years in North America (data from Breeding Bird Survey and/or Christmas Bird Count: Butcher and Niven 2007) Note, however, that these surveys cover less than 50% of the species's range in North America. The European population trend is unknown (BirdLife International 2015).

Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations:NoPopulation severely fragmented:No
Continuing decline in subpopulations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations:NoAll individuals in one subpopulation:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Behaviour This species is fully migratory (del Hoyo et al. 1996). It departs its breeding grounds from late-July to September (southward movements continuing into November) (Hayman et al. 1986, del Hoyo et al. 1996) and returns from late-May to June (del Hoyo et al. 1996). It breeds from May to August (Hayman et al. 1986) in solitary well-dispersed pairs (del Hoyo et al. 1996) and forages alone or in small loose flocks (Johnsgard 1981) of up to 30 individuals (del Hoyo et al. 1996). It is gregarious during the winter however, often roosting in large flocks containing up to several thousand individuals (del Hoyo et al. 1996). Habitat Breeding The species nests in the high Arctic in both upland and valley locations (del Hoyo et al. 1996) between the treeline and the coast (Snow and Perrins 1998) , utilising dry stony tundra with sedge, moss, lichen (del Hoyo et al. 1996), grass (Johnsgard 1981) or dwarf birch (Snow and Perrins 1998), peat ridges in tundra marshes (Johnsgard 1981), dry exposed ridges, riverbanks, raised sand or gravel beaches, and rocky slopes (Johnsgard 1981). Non-breeding Outside of the breeding season the species frequents intertidal mudflats, saltmarshes (del Hoyo et al. 1996), sandflats (Johnsgard 1981, del Hoyo et al. 1996) and beaches (del Hoyo et al. 1996) of oceanic coastlines, bays and estuaries (Johnsgard 1981). During migration it may also be found inland on lakes, pools or grasslands (del Hoyo et al. 1996). Diet Breeding During the breeding season the diet of this species consists largely of adult and larval insects such as beetles and Diptera (del Hoyo et al. 1996) as well as some plant matter (e.g. grass seeds and stems) (del Hoyo et al. 1996). Non-breeding When on the coast in its wintering range the species takes marine polychaete worms, molluscs and crustaceans (del Hoyo et al. 1996) (e.g. crabs, sand shrimps) (Johnsgard 1981), occasionally also taking insects (e.g. grasshoppers and beetles) or earthworms when in inland habitats on passage (del Hoyo et al. 1996). Breeding site The nest is a shallow scrape (del Hoyo et al. 1996) on dry ground in exposed, stony sites (Snow and Perrins 1998), neighbouring nests not less than 400 m apart (del Hoyo et al. 1996). Management information In the UK there is evidence that the removal of Spartina anglica from tidal mudflats using a herbicide is beneficial for the species (Evans 1986).
Systems:Terrestrial; Freshwater; Marine
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Unknown
Generation Length (years):6
Movement patterns:Full Migrant
Congregatory:Congregatory (and dispersive)

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The following information refers to the species's European range only: Populations fluctuate from year to year with poor weather and predator pressure in years of low lemming numbers (Hagemeijer and Blair 1997). Warmer temperatures brought about by climate change are thought to affect this species (Maclean et al. 2008). It is also threatened by disturbance from recreational activities (Cutts et al. 2009), intertidal oyster culture (Gittings and O'Donoghue 2012) and urban and industrial development.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
The species is listed on Annex II (B) of the EU Birds Directive. The following information refers to the species's European range only: In the U.K. there is evidence that the removal of Spartina anglica from tidal mudflats using a herbicide is beneficial for the species (Evans 1986).

Conservation Actions Proposed
The following information refers to the species's European range only: Infrastructure development, human disturbance and marine aquaculture at breeding sites needs to be stopped.

Amended [top]

Amended reason: Added a country of occurrence and a Contributor.

Citation: BirdLife International. 2017. Pluvialis squatarola (amended version of 2016 assessment). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T22693749A111753197. . Downloaded on 20 September 2018.
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