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Over 40 species of birds in Romania at risk of extinction (organisation)

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As many as 43 bird species in Romania (16.6%) are at risk of extinction, 27 (10.42%) are near-threatened species, and 180 (69.5%) are not necessarily currently threatened according to the Red List of Romania's bird species that measures the risk of bird species extinction, developed by the Ministry of the Environment, Water and Forestry together with the Romanian Ornithological Society and the Milvus Group Association for the Protection of Birds and Nature, told Agerpres.

According to the Romanian Ornithological Society, the Red List. called the "barometer of life," measures the extinction risk of birds based on clearly established parameters, such as population size, population trends and the area occupied by the species in Romania.

To create the list, 259 species were analysed, including all the regularly nesting species and a selection of winter guest species. Out of the 259 species, 12 disappeared in the last century from the nesting population of Romania. Another 43 species (16.6%) are at risk of extinction, 27 species (10.42%) are near-threatened species, and 180 (69.5%) are not necessarily currently threatened.

Separate nesting and wintering assessments were made of three species - the white-headed duck, the common pochard and the Eurasian coot - with different final classifications that are found in two of these categories.

According to the analysis, seven species fall into the critically endangered category, six of which are classified for the nesting period: the common goldeneye (Bucephala clangula), the smew (Mergellus albellus), the black kite (Milvus migrans), the eastern imperial eagle (Aquila heliaca), the great bustard (Otis tarda), the gull-billed tern (Gelochelidon nilotica), and one, the lesser white-fronted goose (Anser erythropus), evaluated only for the wintering period.

Based on the Red List, a list of species of priority interest was developed that comprises 95 species for the conservation of which Romania has a great responsibility.

Also, 19 species were identified which population in Romania is at a very high percentage (over 30%) of all Europe. For those species, Romania has a special responsibility in ensuring the survival of their populations. Of the 19 species, three also have a national or global endangered status - the great white pelican (Pelecanus onocrotalus), vulnerable at the national level because the entire population nests in a single area in Romania; the red-breasted goose (Branta ruficollis), vulnerable both nationally and globally, and the lesser grey shrike (Lanius minor), vulnerable on a national level.

The Red List of bird species in Romania measuring the risk of their extinction was approved by Ministerial Order 2015/2022 and published in the Official Journal as part of a project called "Completing the level of knowledge of biodiversity by implementing a system for monitoring the state of conservation of bird species of community interest in Romania and reporting based on article 12 of the Birds Directive 2009/147/ EC."

This is the first step in identifying species that urgently need protection and it creates the legal framework for prioritising conservation actions for bird species in Romania to ensure their survival.

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