EN
Mountain Starling Aplonis santovestris



Taxonomy

Taxonomic source(s)
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
- B1ab(v)+2ab(v); C2a(i,ii) B1ab(v)+2ab(v); C2a(i,ii); D1+2

Red List history
Year Category Criteria
2017 Endangered B1ab(v)+2ab(v); C2a(i,ii)
2016 Vulnerable D1+2
2012 Vulnerable D1+2
2009 Vulnerable D1; D2
2008 Vulnerable
2004 Vulnerable
2000 Vulnerable
1996 Vulnerable
1994 Vulnerable
1988 Threatened
Species attributes

Migratory status not a migrant Forest dependency High
Land mass type Average mass -
Distribution

Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 450 medium
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 21
Number of locations 2-5 -
Severely Fragmented -
Population and trend
Value Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals 250-999 poor estimated 2000
Population trend Decreasing poor suspected -
Decline (3 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (5 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation future) - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation past and future) - - -
Number of subpopulations 1 - - -
Percentage in largest subpopulation 100 - - -
Generation length (yrs) 4.1 - - -

Population justification: Recorded in ones and twos, and reported as 'locally common, not rare' on Santo Pic in August-October 2010 (S. Totterman per G. Dutson in litt. 2016). The population is estimated to number 250-999 mature individuals based on an assessment of known records, descriptions of abundance and range size. This is consistent with recorded population density estimates for congeners or close relatives with a similar body size, and the fact that only a proportion of the estimated Extent of Occurrence is likely to be occupied. This estimate is equivalent to 375-1,499 individuals in total, rounded here to 350-1,500 individuals. However, the population may in fact be smaller given the paucity of recent records and its restriction to an extremely small area of mountain tops (G. Dutson in litt. 2016).

Trend justification: The few records of this species mean it is not possible to assess its recent population trend, but it has clearly declined since historical records and probably since the last record in 1991 (G. Dutson in litt. 2016). There are also plausible threats to the species, with the Man Hill people reportedly eating this species (S. Maturin in litt. 1994). Additionally, a number of other Pacific montane starling species have become extinct, presumably through the introduction of predatory mammals or disease (Pratt et al. 1987), and while Santo has no native land mammals, introduced species such as cats, dogs and rats are now widespread. Therefore, the species may be undergoing a continuous decline, and is precautionarily listed as such, though further work is required to get a better estimate of population trends.


Country/territory distribution
Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Resident Breeding Non-breeding Passage
Vanuatu N Extant Yes

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name
Vanuatu Santo Mountain Chain

Habitats & altitude
Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Moist Montane major resident
Altitude 1200 - 1900 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact
Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Agriculture & aquaculture Annual & perennial non-timber crops - Small-holder farming Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Negligible declines Low Impact: 4
Stresses
Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion
Biological resource use Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals - Intentional use (species is the target) Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Negligible declines Low Impact: 4
Stresses
Species mortality
Climate change & severe weather Habitat shifting & alteration Timing Scope Severity Impact
Future Whole (>90%) Unknown Unknown
Stresses
Indirect ecosystem effects, Ecosystem degradation
Invasive and other problematic species, genes & diseases Invasive non-native/alien species/diseases - Canis familiaris Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) No decline Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Species mortality
Invasive and other problematic species, genes & diseases Invasive non-native/alien species/diseases - Felis catus Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) No decline Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Species mortality
Invasive and other problematic species, genes & diseases Invasive non-native/alien species/diseases - Named species Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) No decline Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Reduced reproductive success
Invasive and other problematic species, genes & diseases Invasive non-native/alien species/diseases - Unspecified species Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) No decline Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Species mortality

Utilisation
Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Food - human - - Non-trivial Recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Species factsheet: Aplonis santovestris. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 20/01/2022. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2022) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 20/01/2022.