species e-bulletin

News from the IUCN Species Survival Commission and the IUCN Species Programme

August 2012


Freshwater species in Indo-Burma region under threat

An assessment of 2,515 described freshwater species in the Indo-Burma region by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and partners has revealed that 13% of these species are threatened with extinction. The report comes at a time when large scale hydrological development is underway, or is proposed, throughout this region which is known for its exceptionally high diversity of freshwater species. This IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ assessment details the locations and status of all described species of freshwater fish, molluscs, odonates, crabs, and selected families of aquatic plants within each of the 1,082 individual river or lake sub-catchments across the region. As the most comprehensive assessment yet of freshwater species in this global biodiversity hotspot, it provides valuable information that can help mitigate and minimize the impact of ongoing and future hydrological developments throughout the region.  Full story

The Status and Distribution of Freshwater Biodiversity in Indo-burma

Knowledge drives action

The ground-breaking work of IUCN’s six commissions is highlighted in the latest issue of the journal S.A.P.I.EN.S.  Set up as “networks of expert volunteers entrusted to develop and advance the institutional knowledge, experience and objectives of IUCN”, the Commissions enable IUCN to link to cutting-edge science to advance knowledge and learning.  SAPIENS (Surveys and Perspectives Integrating Environment and Society), is a peer-reviewed, open access, multidisciplinary journal focused on integrating knowledge to promote sustainability research.

Showcasing each of the six IUCN commissions, this special issue shows how knowledge drives action. It explores how the knowledge generated by the Species Survival Commission (SSC) is helping fight the global biodiversity crisis through the examples of amphibians worldwide and mammals in South-East Asia. Full story  Access the report

A handful of fungi collected on the Yorkshire Moors

Spineless creatures that rule the world

One-fifth of the world’s invertebrates may be threatened with extinction according to ‘Spineless,’ a report published by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL), in conjunction with IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) and the IUCN Species Survival Commission.  Digging up earthworms, chasing butterflies and collecting clam shells could become a thing of the past if enough isn’t done to protect invertebrates. And if they disappear, humans could soon follow.   Full story

Musk beetle (Aromia moschata) by Darkone

Frog species named after HRH the Prince of Wales

 A rare species of Ecuadorian stream frog discovered by SSC member Dr Luis Coloma has been named Hyloscirtus princecharlesi in recognition of The Prince of Wales's efforts to safeguard the world's rainforests.  The Prince met Dr Coloma at an environmental-themed workshop His Royal Highness was hosting for young schoolchildren.  Full story 

HRH the Prince of Wales addresses the IUCN World Conservation Congress on the urgent need to bring agriculture and conservation back together. The issues of how to produce food and how to protect our natural environment have been pitched against each other for far too long. "There is much to learn if we let nature be our guide", says Charles, Prince of Wales in a video address to Congress.


Cayman's imperiled blue iguanas on the rebound - a conservation success

QUEEN ELIZABETH II BOTANIC PARK, Cayman Islands (AP) — The blue iguana has lived on the rocky shores of Grand Cayman for at least a couple of million years, preening like a miniature turquoise dragon as it soaked in the sun or sheltered inside crevices. Yet having survived everything from tropical hurricanes to ice ages, it was driven to near-extinction by dogs, cats and cars.  Now, though, a breeding program some see as a global model has worked better than any had hoped to dream for a species that numbered less than a dozen in the wild just a decade ago, preyed upon by escaped pets and struggling to survive in a habitat eroded by the advance of human settlement.  Roughly 700 blazing blue iguanas breed and roam free in protected woodlands on the eastern side of Grand Cayman, a 22-mile-long (35-kilometer-long) speck in the western Caribbean that is the only place where the critically endangered animals are found in the wild.  Full story 

Gorgeous George - a Grand Cayman Blue Iguana

Progressing towards a Net Positive Impact on biodiversity.

A new report by IUCN and Rio Tinto provides the first detailed site based assessment regarding Rio Tinto’s progress towards achieving its Net positive impact (NPI) commitment on biodiversity – that is ensuring that biodiversity ultimately benefits as a result of a company’s activities in a region. Forecasting the path towards a Net Positive Impact on biodiversity for Rio Tinto QMM focuses on the Rio Tinto ilmenite mine in Madagascar, run by QIT Madagascar Minerals (Rio Tinto QMM), this site was chosen as a pilot site to test the tools designed to achieved and quantify NPI on biodiversity.  Full story

Black-and-White Ruffed Lemur (Varecia variegate). Threat category Critically Endangered

MTSG member obtains a Whitley Award for Nature

Congratulations to Joanna Alfaro-Shigueto from Lima (Peru) on receiving a prestigious Whitley Fund for Nature Award. Joanna won because of her work with ProDelphinus to provide small-scale fishermen with the tools to fish more selectively and reduce their impacts upon endangered marine fauna such as sea turtles, seabirds and marine mammals. She said: 'This award will directly contribute to the empowerment of small-scale fishermen, by helping them to fish in a more selective and responsible way, and reduce the effect of their fisheries on the sea turtles, seabirds and marine mammals that are caught incidentally. With the generous support of WFN we will achieve major advances in the conservation of our oceans and toward improving the livelihoods of the thousands of fishermen, their families and the communities that depend upon marine resources in Peru'. WFN video about Joanna's work.


Otters and Fisheries Conference, 7 November 2012, Edinburgh

This one-day conference in Edinburgh, Scotland, on Wednesday 7 November 2012 aims to bring  otter workers and fisheries people together:

• To create a working group that will do further research into the subject of
otter impact on fisheries
• To raise awareness of other issues that might be to blame
• To examine and challenge common misconceptions about otters, their numbers and impact
• To start a conversation that will explore how otter populations and fisheries
can exist together

Full details and registration  



North American, Central American and Caribbean Chondrichthyans Regional Status Report

The latest Regional Status report published by the IUCN Shark Specialist Group is on the Conservation Status of North American, Central American and Caribbean Chondrichthyans. Download the report  Download fast figures from the report. If you woud like to discuss this work with a member of the IUCN Shark Specialist Group please contact IUCN SSG Program Officer Lucy Harrison - iucnshark@gmail.com



SULiNews: The latest news from the IUCN CEESP/SSC Sustainable Use and Livelihoods Specialist Group (SULi) is now online. Featuring an interview with Georgina Mace who draws us into the big picture, while pointing out some of the limitations of sustainability science as currently practised. Marshall Murphree, the first global Chair of the SUSG and a pre-eminent thinker about sustainable use, recalls the contribution of the late Elinor Ostrom, who died earlier this year. There are further perspectives on the bushmeat issue and new angles on wild plant harvesting and traditional knowledge. The rhino debate continues whilst our Specialist Group this issue is the South American Camelids Specialist Group (GECS), with Dr Gaby Lichtenstein, who questions whether vicuña offer as successful an example of sustainable use as is often thought.
Issue 2 - August 2012 is online now 


Antelopes: Giraffe Working Group

The latest edition of Giraffa, the newsletter of the IUCN/SSC ASG International Giraffe Working Group (IGWG) is now available online.  The newsletters of the are intended to provide a forum and outlet for a more coordinated and targeted integration of knowledge on this species - both in - and ex-situ, with the intention of feeding back findings to interested parties and decision makers around the world, whether they be IUCN, government, local community based natural resource programmes or zoos.

The Giraffe Conservation Foundation has commenced an exciting project to establish the current status of all giraffe populations and (sub)species throughout the African continent to support and appropriately inform their conservation and management. The project gathers data on giraffe numbers and range from across their distribution.  More info Giraffe Conservation Status Report project

ASG Logo

Seahorse, Pipefish & Stickleback

Project Seahorse's 2011 annual report, is now available for download in printer-friendly PDF format.  In the pages of this annual report you'll find stories and highlights from Project Seahorse's innovative and interdisciplinary conservation work over the past year.   


Message to all Island conservationists - Listserve available

How to be better connect island conservationists internationally?  The Global Island Plant Conservation Network (GIPCN) has extended its Network and Listserver to all conservationists on islands, not just botanists, and is now the Global Island Conservation Network - GICN.

At present the associated listserver is low-volume (1-2 messages per week), primarily concerned with circulating news of new publications and other items of interest to island conservationists worldwide. The list is moderated by Dr Christoph Kueffer (Institute of Integrative Biology, Universitätsstrasse 16, ETH Zentrum, CHN, CH-8092 Zürich, Switzerland; phone +41 (0)44 632 43 08; email kueffer@env.ethz.ch).

There are two ways to subscribe to the list:

1. Visit http://listserv.bgci.org/scripts/wa.exe , click on 'ISLANDS-L', then 'Subscribe or Unsubscribe' and enter your contact details
2. Send an email to listserv@listserv.bgci.org  containing the command: SUBSCRIBE ISLANDS-L Firstname Lastname

In case you encounter a technical problem, please contact Meirion Jones meirion.jones@bgci.org


Plant a Pledge

Plant a Pledge  is an opportunity for the global public to tell world leaders and land owners that they support the goal to restore 150 million hectares of degraded and deforested lands by the year 2020. The goal is an implementation vehicle for achieving CBD Aichi Target 15 and has become known as the “Bonn Challenge” after it was launched in Bonn, Germany, in September 2011.

Restoring 150 million hectares would inject billions of new dollars into economies every year, and would significantly help mitigate climate change, boost biodiversity and reduce poverty. The Plant a Pledge petition will gather the signatures from people across the globe, and will be personally delivered by our Ambassador Bianca Jagger to senior delegates at the UN Climate Change meeting in Doha this December, urging land owners and governments to dedicate land to landscape restoration.

Help us gather enough signatures to really turn the heads of those leaders and convince them to commit to the Bonn Challenge. Full information on www.plantapledge.com  


Conservation Evidence project: Carnivore Synopsis

The Conservation Evidence project, based out of the University of Cambridge, is currently creating a Carnivore Synopsis. This synopsis aims to synthesize all available evidence on interventions that a conservationist could use to make management or policy decisions with respect to carnivores. These include any actions to restore or preserve carnivores and/or their habitats, ranging from human-carnivore conflict mitigation or disease management, to the success or failure of reintroduction projects. The only restriction is that the interventions must be quantitatively documented. The submission of any relevant work (peer reviewed articles, reports, conference proceedings, or other grey literature) from across the SSC network will be warmly welcomed. Please send any work fitting this description, or address any questions to carnivores@conservationevidence.com  by 30th September 2012.


Student Conference on Conservation Science, 19-21 March 2013, Cambridge UK

 The Student Conference on Conservation Science series in Cambridge, Australia, Bangalore and New York is the only international series of conservation conferences aimed entirely at students. SCCS helps young conservation scientists gain experience, learn new ideas and make contacts that will be valuable for their future careers. Over the past 13 years, we have hosted over 2,000 delegates from 117 countries worldwide. The fourteenth conference in the Cambridge series will be held from 19 - 21 March 2013, in the Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge, UK. Deadline for applications: 31 October 2012 Full info


Training courses at the Durrell Institute

1.  Managing infectious disease in conservation programmes 10-14 Sept
In recent years, species and ecosystems have been threatened by many anthropogenic factors manifested in outbreaks of infectious disease causing local and global declines. This five day course exposes you to the realities of monitoring and managing disease within conservation programmes. It considers the impact of emerging infectious diseases on wildlife populations and explores how disease operates in particular within small populations and how we can transfer veterinary/ecological/modelling skills that we apply to captive populations to the management of threatened species recovery in the wild.


2.  Captive care and conservation of callitrichids and lemurs 15-19 Oct
This five day course is designed to equip you with the necessary skills to successfully manage callitrichids and lemurs in captivity. Durrell maintains a large and varied collection of these species and has decades of experience in their captive management and in-situ conservation. The course is targeted at curators, keepers and veterinarians from zoos and other institutions.  involved in the captive management of callitrichids and lemurs.

Full information or contact itc@durrell.org


Whitley Fund for Nature – Call for applications for the Whitley Awards 2013

 The Whitley Fund for Nature (WFN) is a UK registered charity offering “Whitley Awards” to outstanding nature conservation leaders around the world. Whitley Awards are both an international profile prize and a form of project funding (currently £35,000 over one year).  The application process for the Whitley Awards 2013 is now open.  Deadline 30 October 2012.Full info here 


WAZA 67th Annual Conference and Technical Congress, 7-11 October, Melbourne

The overall theme is "Fighting Extinction" and contributions include the following topics

 • Saving/protecting species in human care
• Sustainable populations
• Breeding for release
• Field work
• Community conservation
• Advocacy and actions
• Research
• Marketing and fundraising

Click WAZA 2012 for full info on programme, registration, venue and accomodation


ZOOS and AQUARIUMS: Committing to Conservation (ZACC) Conference, 8-12 July 2013, Des Moines, USA

The Blank Park Zoo is pleased to announce the 2013 Zoos and Aquariums: Committing to Conservation (ZACC) conference to be held from 8-12 July, 2013, in Des Moines, Iowa. ZACC is a biennial international conference that promotes networking amongst zoo personnel and field researchers and conservationists resulting in partnerships that benefit both field sites as well as zoos.  To register please see www.blankparkzoo.com  or see www.zaccconference.com  


IUCN situation analysis on East and Southeast Asian intertidal habitats, with particular reference to the Yellow Sea (including the Bohai Sea)

The IUCN Species Survival Commission and IUCN Asia Regional Office commissioned this independent report to assess the state and condition of intertidal habitats along the East Asian-Australasian Flyway (EAAF), in response to growing concerns expressed by IUCN members over observed declines in biodiversity, the loss of ecological services, and an increase in ecological disasters. This report is a situation analysis, and it seeks to gather in one place the relevant data and analyses, and to present as clear a picture of the status of the intertidal zone in the EAAF as the data allow. It makes use of the status and population trends of key species of waterbirds as indicators of the environmental health of intertidal habitats (including beaches, marshes, mudflats, mangroves and seagrass beds). By intention, this report makes no recommendations, but it should serve as a resource for those stakeholders empowered to make or influence decisions and policies in the region.  Download the report in PDF


Journal of Threatened Taxa

Latest edition August 2012 | Vol. 4 | No. 9 | Pages 2845-2932
Date of Publication 26 August 2012 (online & print)


Zooquaria Issue 79, Autumn 2012

 The latest issue of Zooquaria, the quarterly magazine of EAZA, is now available.  Highlights in this issue include a photographic account of the captive care and reintroduction of the Eurasian black vulture, an interview with Shai Doron, Director General of Jerusalem's inspirational Biblical Zoo, and an exciting new project bringing technology alongside tradition in new Bulgarian education programmes. View or download here


Other IUCN publications

> An appraisal of challenges in the sustainable management of the micro-tidal barrier-built estuaries and lagoons in Sri Lanka (2012)

>An appraisal of mangrove management in micro-tidal estuaries and lagoons in Sri Lanka (2011)

> The conservation status of North American, Central American, and Caribbean chondrichthyans (2012)

>Fishing and tourism in the Fijian economy (2012)

> Fishing and tourism in the Vanuatu economy (2012)

> Guide to some invasive plants affecting Lake Tanganyika (2012)


Living in a Changing Climate newsletter

Issued jointly by IUCN and CARE International, Living in a Changing Climate keeps you up to date on work on climate change adaptation in Cambodia, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam. IUCN and CARE International are carrying out two projects, “Building Resilience to Climate Change Impacts Coastal Southeast Asia” (BCR) and “Building Costal Resilience to Reduce Climate Change Impact in Thailand and Indonesia" (BCR-CC), both funded by the European Union. 


Species events at the World Conservation Congress

 We have prepared a list of all Species related events taking place at Congress - access this list here Species Journey. This is in addition to the programme of sessions happening at the Species Pavillion in Jeju. 

Visit the Congress website for full information on Registration and Forum events.  Français  I  Español

WCC V Jeju


  • If you attending congress, or even if your aren’t, you can keep up with all the news on the IUCN Twitter Hub www.iucn.org/twitter. Remember to include #IUCN2012 and @IUCN or @AmazingSpecies in your tweets!
  • Share your opinion about events using the session hashtags when tweeting: #forumXXXX (replace XXXX with the session 4-digit number)
  • Check photos and videos tagged #IUCN2012 on YouTube and Flickr, and post your own.
  • Receive the daily IUCN  social network roundup by emailing us at socialmedia@iucn.org  
  • More information on all IUCN Social media.
Social media at the 2012 IUCN Congress


 Latest here

Traffic Website

IUCN Commission Newsletters

World Commission on Protected Areas
WCPA News update
Commission on Education and Communication
CEC Newsletter
Commission on Environmental Law
CEL Newsletter
Commission on Ecosystem Management
CEM News Ecosystem 
Commission on Commission on Environmental, Economic and Social Policy

CEESP Newsletter


IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) © 2010

The monthly e-Bulletin supplements Species, the published newsletter of the Species Programme and the SSC. It aims to keep staff, members and the wider IUCN network up-to-date with Species news and announcements. 2009 issues are available on the Species homepage.   Contact us sscmembership@iucn.org


Photo credits@ IUCN: Header : Intu BOEDHIHARTONO