Meadow Pipit Anthus pratensis


Taxonomic source(s)
AERC TAC. 2003. AERC TAC Checklist of bird taxa occurring in Western Palearctic region, 15th Draft. Available at: # _the_WP15.xls#.
Cramp, S. and Simmons, K.E.L. (eds). 1977-1994. Handbook of the birds of Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The birds of the western Palearctic. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A., Fishpool, L.D.C., Boesman, P. and Kirwan, G.M. 2016. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Volume 2: Passerines. Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, UK.

IUCN Red List criteria met and history
Red List criteria met
Critically Endangered Endangered Vulnerable
- - -

Red List history
Year Category Criteria
2021 Least Concern
2018 Near Threatened A2abc+3bc+4abc
2016 Near Threatened A2abc+3bc+4abc
2015 Near Threatened A2abc+3bc+4abc
2012 Least Concern
2009 Least Concern
2008 Least Concern
2004 Least Concern
2000 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1994 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1988 Lower Risk/Least Concern
Species attributes

Migratory status full migrant Forest dependency does not normally occur in forest
Land-mass type Average mass -

Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 15,600,000 medium
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 24,700,000 medium
Severely fragmented? no -
Population and trend
Value Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
Number of mature individuals 24000000-33000000 medium estimated 2021
Population trend decreasing estimated -
Generation length (years) 2.22 - - -

Population justification: In Europe, the breeding population is estimated to number 11,000,000-14,900,000 pairs, which equates to approximately 22,000,000-30,000,000 mature individuals and 33,000,000-45,000,000 individuals (BirdLife International in prep.). Europe forms 90% of the global range, so a very preliminary estimate of the global population size is 24,000,000-33,000,000 mature individuals and 37,000,000-50,000,000 individuals although further validation of this estimate is needed.

Trend justification: New data collated from across Europe for the 2021 European Red List of Birds (BirdLife International in prep.) indicate that the species' rate of decline has slowed to c. 5-10% over the last decade. Of the five countries that hold c. 80% of the European breeding population, only one (Russia, with 10%, extending just east of the Ural Mountains into West Siberia) reports a significant decline since 2007. Norway (30%) reports stability (Kalas et al., 2014); the UK (19%) a small decline (Woodward et al., 2020); Iceland (12%) fluctuations but overall stability (Skarpheoinsson, 2018); and Sweden (9%) a small increase ( Decreases have been reported from Ukraine (T. Kuzmenko in litt., 2021) but the Ukrainian population comprises only a minor fraction of the European population. Furthermore, the latest 10-year Pan-European Common Bird Monitoring Scheme trend also suggests a stable or even slightly increasing European population of 6% from 2007-17 (acknowledging that this does not include the decline in Russia). As Europe holds almost the entire global breeding population, it is reasonable to assume that the European decline (5-10% over 10 years) also represents the global trend.

Country/territory distribution
Country/Territory Presence Origin Resident Breeding Non-breeding Passage
Afghanistan extant native yes
Albania extant native yes
Algeria extant native yes
Austria extant native yes
Azerbaijan extant native yes
Bahrain extant native yes
Belarus extant native yes
Belgium extant native yes
Bosnia and Herzegovina extant native yes yes
Bulgaria extant native yes
China (mainland) extant vagrant
Croatia extant native yes yes
Cyprus extant native yes
Czechia extant native yes
Denmark extant native yes yes
Egypt extant native yes
Estonia extant native yes
Faroe Islands (to Denmark) extant native yes
Finland extant native yes yes
France extant native yes yes
Georgia extant native yes
Germany extant native yes yes
Gibraltar (to UK) extant native yes
Greece extant native yes yes
Greenland (to Denmark) extant native yes
Hungary extant native yes
Iceland extant native yes
India extant vagrant
Iran, Islamic Republic of extant native yes
Iraq extant native yes
Ireland extant native yes
Israel extant native yes
Italy extant native yes yes
Jordan extant native yes yes
Kazakhstan extant native yes yes
Kuwait extant native yes
Latvia extant native yes
Lebanon extant native yes yes
Libya extant native yes
Liechtenstein extant native yes
Lithuania extant native yes
Luxembourg extant native yes
Malta extant native yes
Mauritania extant native yes yes
Moldova extant native yes
Montenegro extant native
Morocco extant native yes
Netherlands extant native yes
North Macedonia extant native yes
Norway extant native yes
Oman extant vagrant yes
Palestine extant native yes
Poland extant native yes
Portugal extant native yes
Qatar extant native yes
Romania extant native yes
Russia extant native yes
Russia (Central Asian) extant native yes
Russia (European) extant native yes
Saudi Arabia extant native yes yes
Senegal extant vagrant
Serbia extant native
Slovakia extant native yes
Slovenia extant native yes
Spain extant native yes yes yes
Svalbard and Jan Mayen Islands (to Norway) extant native yes
Sweden extant native yes yes
Switzerland extant native yes
Syria extant native yes yes
Tajikistan extant native yes yes
Tunisia extant native yes
Türkiye extant native yes
Turkmenistan extant native yes yes
Ukraine extant native yes yes
United Arab Emirates extant native yes yes
United Kingdom extant native yes
Uzbekistan extant native yes yes

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name
Belarus Balota Dzikoje
Finland Litokaira
Finland Kemihaara (Vuotos) mires and forests
Finland Pöyrisvuoma mire protection area
Finland Kevo
Finland Pallas and Ylläs fjelds
Finland Pomokaira-Koitelaiskaira
Finland Saariselkä and Koilliskaira
Finland Lemmenjoki-Hammastunturi-Pulju
Finland Käsivarsi fjelds
Finland Lätäseno and Jietajoki mires
Russia (European) Lapland Biosphere Reserve
Sweden Lake Ånn – Storlien
Bosnia and Herzegovina Dabarsko and Fatničko Karstic Fields
Bosnia and Herzegovina Popovo polje
Bosnia and Herzegovina Duvanjsko polje
Bosnia and Herzegovina Mostarsko Blato
Bosnia and Herzegovina Glamočko polje
Bosnia and Herzegovina Kupreško polje
Bosnia and Herzegovina Lušci polje
Bosnia and Herzegovina Nevesinjsko polje
Bosnia and Herzegovina Grahovo poljes (Pašića polje, Grahovsko polje, Marinkovci)
Bosnia and Herzegovina Petrovac poljes
Bosnia and Herzegovina Podrašničko polje
Bosnia and Herzegovina Vukovsko-Ravanjsko polje

Habitats & altitude
Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Artificial/Terrestrial Pastureland marginal resident
Grassland Temperate suitable breeding
Grassland Temperate suitable non-breeding
Grassland Tundra suitable non-breeding
Grassland Tundra suitable breeding
Marine Coastal/Supratidal Coastal Sand Dunes suitable breeding
Marine Intertidal Rocky Shoreline suitable non-breeding
Marine Intertidal Salt Marshes (Emergent Grasses) suitable non-breeding
Marine Intertidal Salt Marshes (Emergent Grasses) suitable breeding
Marine Intertidal Sandy Shoreline and/or Beaches, Sand Bars, Spits, Etc suitable non-breeding
Marine Intertidal Shingle and/or Pebble Shoreline and/or Beaches suitable non-breeding
Marine Intertidal Tidepools suitable non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Bogs, Marshes, Swamps, Fens, Peatlands suitable breeding
Altitude 0 - 3000 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact
Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Agriculture & aquaculture Annual & perennial non-timber crops - Agro-industry farming Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Declines Low Impact: 5
Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion
Biological resource use Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals - Persecution/control Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Unknown Unknown Unknown
Ecosystem degradation
Climate change & severe weather Droughts Timing Scope Severity Impact
Future Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Declines Low Impact: 3
Indirect ecosystem effects, Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion
Climate change & severe weather Habitat shifting & alteration Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Declines Low Impact: 5
Ecosystem degradation
Climate change & severe weather Storms & flooding Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Causing/Could cause fluctuations Medium Impact: 6
Indirect ecosystem effects, Species mortality

Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Food - human - - non-trivial recent
Pets/display animals, horticulture - - international non-trivial recent
Sport hunting/specimen collecting - - non-trivial recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Species factsheet: Anthus pratensis. Downloaded from on 05/10/2023. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2023) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 05/10/2023.