Anthus antarcticus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Passeriformes Motacillidae

Scientific Name: Anthus antarcticus Cabanis, 1884
Common Name(s):
English South Georgia Pipit
Taxonomic Source(s): del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A., Fishpool, L.D.C., Boesman, P. and Kirwan, G.M. 2016. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Volume 2: Passerines. Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, UK.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2016-10-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Contributor(s): Croxall, J.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Stattersfield, A., O'Brien, A., Taylor, J.
This species is classed as Near Threatened owing to its small population and small range on one island, which remains susceptible to the introduction of rats. Should any immediate threat arise, this species should be uplisted as a matter of urgency.

Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Anthus antarcticus is endemic to the sub-Antarctic island of South Georgia (Georgia del Sur), with a total population estimated as 3,000-4,000 pairs (McIntosh and Walton 2000). It is confined to c.20 small, rat-free offshore islands and islets, and to a few mainland areas (<10% of total habitat), enclosed by sea-level glaciers, in which brown rat Rattus norvegicus is currently absent (Pye and Bonner 1980, Prince and Croxall 1983, Croxall 1987, Prince and Poncet 1996).

Countries occurrence:
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands
Additional data:
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO):NoEstimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:4900
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 population has been estimated at 3000-4000 pairs, equivalent to 6,000-8,000 mature individuals and c.9,000-12,000 individuals in total.

Trend Justification:  The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals:6000-8000Continuing 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
No. of individuals in largest subpopulation:100

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:It breeds in low altitude tussock grassland, wintering mainly on ice-free shorelines (Prince and Croxall 1983). It feeds on insects in tussock habitat, and insects and crustaceans along tidelines (J. P. Croxall in litt. 2000). In typical habitat it is common and productive, but winter survival of juveniles is low. It has almost no natural predators, remains of birds very occasionally turning up at middens of Brown Skua Catharacta lonnbergi (J. P. Croxall in litt. 2000).

Systems:Terrestrial; Freshwater; Marine
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Unknown
Generation Length (years):3.7
Movement patterns:Not a Migrant

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The projected continuing recession of glaciers at South Georgia threaten its remaining mainland habitats with invasion by rats (J. P. Croxall in litt. 2000). Accidental introduction of rats to offshore islands is a perpetual risk.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
Although precautions are taken to prevent the introduction of rats to several important sites, their remote location renders regulation of all visitors to all sites impossible in practice (J. P. Croxall in litt. 2000, McIntosh and Walton 2000).

Conservation Actions Proposed
Carry out surveys to obtain an up-to-date population estimate. Monitor population trends through regular surveys. Maintain measures to prevent the introduction of rats.

Citation: BirdLife International. 2016. Anthus antarcticus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T22718588A94587376. . Downloaded on 18 August 2018.
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