Justification of Red List Category
This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is extremely large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
This species has undergone a small or statistically insignificant decrease over the last 40 years in North America (data from Breeding Bird Survey and/or Christmas Bird Count: Butcher and Niven 2007). Note, however, that these surveys cover less than 50% of the species's range in North America.
Athene cunicularia is distributed throughout the Americas, occurring in Canada, U.S.A., Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, the Bahamas, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, the Netherlands Antilles, Venezuela, Guyana, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay. The Lesser Antillean subspecies guadeloupensis and amaura, of Guadeloupe (to France) and Antigua and Barbuda respectively, have both been extinct since the late 1800s (del Hoyo et al. 1999).
Text account compilers
Butchart, S., Ekstrom, J., Khwaja, N.
BirdLife International (2020) Species factsheet: Athene cunicularia. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 19/02/2020. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2020) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 19/02/2020.