To allow the underlying data to be analysed, and to ensure uniformity when describing the habitat in which a taxon occurs, the threats to a taxon, what conservation actions are in place or are needed, and whether or not the taxon is utilized, a set of standard terms (Classification Schemes) have been developed for documenting taxa on The IUCN Red List.
The Classification Schemes for Threats and Conservation Actions Needed underwent a major review as part of a joint initiative between the IUCN Red List Partnership and The Conservation Measures Partnership, and are now in use (for further details about the schemes, click here). For an explanation of the Threats and Conservation Actions Needed Classification Schemes, please read the Conservation Biology 2008 article: A Standard Lexicon for Biodiversity Conservation: Unified Classifications of Threats and Actions.
The Classification Schemes used in IUCN Red List assessments include:
- Threats – to record past, ongoing and future threats to a taxon. For definitions, examples and guidance on the Threats Classification Scheme ver. 3.2, click here.
- Stresses – to record how each threat impacts a taxon. For definitions, examples and guidance on the Stresses Classification Scheme ver. 1.1, click here.
- Habitats – to record which habitats a taxon occurs in. For definitions, examples and guidance on the Habitats Classification Scheme ver. 3.1, click here.
- Conservation Actions In Place – to record what conservation actions are already in place for a taxon. For definitions, examples and guidance on the Conservation Actions in Place Classification Scheme ver 2.0, see here.
- Conservation Actions Needed – to record what conservation actions are needed for a taxon. For definitions, examples and guidance on the Conservation Actions Needed Classification Scheme ver. 2.0, click here.
- Research Needed – to record what further research is needed on a taxon. For definitions, examples and guidance on the Research Needed Classification Scheme ver. 1.0, click here.
- Use and Trade – to record how a taxon is utilised and what level of trade occurs for the taxon. A new version of this classification scheme will be posted here in due course.
- Livelihoods – to record the importance of a taxon to human livelihoods. For the Livelihoods Classification Scheme ver. 2.0, click here).
- Plant Growth Forms – to record growth or life form to enable searches on the Red List web site for particular functional groups of plants (trees, shrubs, succulents, ferns, etc.) For definitions and guidance on the Plant Growth Forms Classification Scheme ver. 1.0, click here.
The guidance documents attached above to each Classification Scheme are working drafts and that whilst the Classification Schemes themselves may not change, the definitions, examples and guidance on use will be periodically updated, and new versions are indicated by the version number.
If the timing, scope and severity of threats are recorded, an impact score of the threats is automatically calculated based on the values in the attached table.