Justification of Red List Category
This species is listed as Endangered because it has a very small population found on only one island, and the population size is likely declining as a result of habitat loss and invasive species.
A population estimate of 1,800 individuals (equivalent to 1,200 mature individuals) was made in 2004, but the authors stated that this may be an optimistic number (Hayes et al. 2004).
Surveys in the early 1990s suggested that this species may have declined by as much as 90% since 1969 (Smith and Smith 1994). Invasive species and habitat loss may also be driving declines.
S. insularis is found only on Grand Bahama Island of the Bahamas (Harrap 2016).
This species inhabits forest.
The species is threatened by habitat destruction and degradation through logging and development; as well as fires and hurricane damage (Hayes et al. 2004). Invasive species may also be an issue, either acting as predators (Corn Snake, Pantherophis guttatus) or as competition for this species (e.g. House Sparrow, Passer domesticus, and European Starling, Sturnus vulgaris) (Hayes et al. 2004).
Conservation Action Underway
Conservation Action ProposedCarry out surveys in order to refine the population estimate. Conduct regular surveys at selected sites to monitor population trends. Monitor rates of habitat loss and degradation. Challenge detrimental development proposals and raise awareness of the importance of forest conservation. Protect areas of suitable habitat. Assess the potential impact of invasive species.
Text account compilers
Butchart, S., Ekstrom, J. & Westrip, J.
BirdLife International (2017) Species factsheet: Sitta insularis. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 20/10/2017. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2017) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 20/10/2017.