durrell index #01
Species trends: successes and challenges How are populations of Durrell’s target species responding to conservation? Which species are recovering and which are still in trouble?
This indicator tracks how populations of Durrell’s target species have changed over the history of its involvement. It highlights a number of conservation successes but also some of the major challenges we face. Monitoring rare and elusive species in remote regions of the world is no easy task, but it is vital. Durrell’s field managers, scientists and local partners conduct regular scientific surveys to ensure we have an accurate understanding of the status of our species and how they are responding to conservation. We have good data on 40 of our 50+ target species. Around two thirds are currently increasing or stable in numbers, while a third are currently declining.
The Mauritius Kestrel and Saint Lucia Parrot are two of Durrell’s longest-term conservation targets. In 1974 only four Mauritius Kestrels were left on the planet. Thanks to intensive conservation efforts pioneered by Durrell’s Carl Jones, and later led by the Mauritian Wildlife Foundation, the Mauritius Kestrel has recovered to around 500 today. Also back in the 1970s, the Saint Lucia Parrot had dwindled to just 100 birds. Following a long-term collaborative effort by the Saint Lucia Forestry Department, Rare and Durrell its population has now recovered to 2,000 birds. This indicator also reveals some major challenges. We have recently witnessed catastrophic declines in the Orangetailed Skink of Mauritius and Mountain Chicken frog in Montserrat following the arrival of invasive species, and demanding immediate conservation responses to save them from extinction.
+ 2,400% +1,500% +185%
Mauritus Kestrel Start population: 4 Finish population: 350 1974-2010
Echo Parakeet Start population: 10 Finish population: 500 1980-2010
Rodrigues Fruitbat Start population: 350 Finish population: 10,000 1982-2010
Pink Pigeon Start population: 16 Finish population: 400 1980-2010
St Lucia Parrot Start population: 125 Finish population: 2,000 1975-2009
Orange-tailed Skink Start population: 25,700 Finish population: 440 2009-2011
Mountain Chicken -95% decrease 2009-2010
Bojer's Skink -80% decrease 2009-2011
White-breasted Thrasher Start population: 1300 Finish population: 860 2006-2011
Livingstones's Flying Fox Start population: 961 Finish population: 749 2002-2011
Madagascar Pochard Start population: 20 Finish population: 57 2009-2012
Giant Jumping Rat +144% increase 2000-2007
+ 7% Mangrove Finch Start population: 93 Finish population: 99 2006-2008
Shaded silhouettes = historical population Full colour silhouettes = current population