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Sturnus unicolor 

Scope: Global
Language: English
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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Passeriformes Sturnidae

Scientific Name: Sturnus unicolor Temminck, 1820
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Spotless Starling
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: 2016
Date Assessed: 2016-10-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Ashpole, J, Butchart, S., Ekstrom, J.
Justification:
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). The population trend appears to be increasing, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is extremely 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:
Native:
Algeria; France; Gibraltar; Italy; Morocco; Portugal; Spain; Tunisia
Vagrant:
Denmark; Greece; Libya; Malta
Additional data:
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO):NoEstimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:2780000
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:In Europe, the breeding population is estimated to number 23,900,000-30,600,000 pairs, which equates to 47,800,000-61,300,000 mature individuals (BirdLife International 2015). Europe forms c.55% of the global range, so a very preliminary estimate of the global population size is 87,000,000-111,000,000 mature individuals, although further validation of this estimate is needed.

Trend Justification:  The population is suspected to be increasing due to an expansion of the species's range in Iberia (Feare and Craig 1998). In Europe, trends between 1998 and 2013 show that populations have undergone a moderate increase (EBCC 2015).
Current Population Trend:Increasing
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals:87000000-110999999Continuing 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:This species is found in open woodland with expanses of short grass, often in association with grazing mammals as well as in farmland, parks, gardens and cities. Breeding occurs from April to mid-July in Spain and March to July in Morocco. It is a colonial nester. Both sexes build the nest, mainly from dry grass and it is lined with grass, roots, leaves and feathers. Often yellow flowers are included in the structure, as well as fresh green leaves. It is placed in a natural hole or an old woodpecker hole, or in the disused burrow of European Bee-eater (Merops apiaster) or Collared Sand Martin (Riparia riparia) and artificial structures and nestboxes are widely used. Clutches are four to five eggs in Spain. It is omnivorous; it takes mainly animal matter in the spring and summer and fruit and seeds in the autumn and winter. The species is mostly sedentary (Craig et al. 2015).
Systems:Terrestrial
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Unknown
Generation Length (years):4.2
Movement patterns:Not a Migrant

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Interbreeding between this species and Sturnus vulgaris has been observed in areas where it is sympatric (Hagemeijer and Blair 1997), although this is not known to be a serious threat.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
Bern Convention Appendix II. There are currently no known conservation measures for this species within Europe.

Conservation Actions Proposed
No conservation measures are currently needed for this species within Europe.

Classifications [top]

3. Shrubland -> 3.8. Shrubland - Mediterranean-type Shrubby Vegetation
suitability:Suitable season:resident major importance:No
4. Grassland -> 4.4. Grassland - Temperate
suitability:Suitable season:resident major importance:No
14. Artificial/Terrestrial -> 14.1. Artificial/Terrestrial - Arable Land
suitability:Suitable season:resident major importance:No
14. Artificial/Terrestrial -> 14.4. Artificial/Terrestrial - Rural Gardens
suitability:Suitable season:resident major importance:No
14. Artificial/Terrestrial -> 14.5. Artificial/Terrestrial - Urban Areas
suitability:Suitable season:resident major importance:No

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
  Action Recovery plan:No
  Systematic monitoring scheme:Yes
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Conservation sites identified:Yes, over entire range
  Occur in at least one PA:Yes
  Invasive species control or prevention:No
In-Place Species Management
  Successfully reintroduced or introduced beningly:No
  Subject to ex-situ conservation:No
In-Place Education
  Subject to recent education and awareness programmes:No
  Included in international legislation:No
  Subject to any international management/trade controls:No

Bibliography [top]

BirdLife International. 2004. Birds in Europe: population estimates, trends and conservation status. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K.

BirdLife International. 2015. European Red List of Birds. Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, Luxembourg.

Craig, A., Feare, C. and Bonan, A. 2015. Spotless Starling (Sturnus unicolor). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. and de Juana, E. (eds), Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive, Lynx Edicions, Barcelona.

EBCC. 2015. Pan-European Common Bird Monitoring Scheme. Available at: http://www.ebcc.info/index.php?ID=587.

Hagemeijer, E.J.M. and Blair, M.J. 1997. The EBCC atlas of European breeding birds: their distribution and abundance. T. and A. D. Poyser, London.

IUCN. 2016. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2016-3. Available at: www.iucnredlist.org. (Accessed: 07 December 2016).


Citation: BirdLife International. 2016. Sturnus unicolor. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T22710893A87851643. . Downloaded on 22 May 2018.
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