Action Planning to save threatened species in Central Philippines

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ASAP Partner, Talarak Foundation Inc., is based on Negros Island in the Central Philippines and works to provide the long-term protection of threatened and rare Philippine biodiversity through conservation programmes. Recently, they organised and hosted the Western Visayas Conservation Workshop to develop a multi-species conservation strategy to identify the main conservation needs and recommended conservation approach for five key species endemic to the region. Of these, three are ASAP species: the Visayan Warty Pig Sus cebifrons, Rufous-headed Hornbill Rhabdotorrhinus waldeni…

Focus on the Philippines

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Elevated endemism & extinction risks The Philippines is an archipelagic nation, composed of over 7,640 islands, situated in the west Pacific. Its long isolation has resulted in high levels of endemism in its flora and fauna. The fact that the country comprises the entirety of its own biodiversity hotspot is a testament to this! However, this unique biodiversity is under threat. Forest loss in the Philippines has left only 12% of historical primary forest cover remaining (Verburg & Veldkamp 2004)….

Challenges and opportunities for Helmeted Hornbill conservation – article by ASAP Advisor Madhu Rao

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The Helmeted hornbill is highly threatened by poaching for its unique red casque. Find out more about the challenges and potential opportunities for its conservation by reading ASAP Advisor Madhu Rao’s article, following her participation at the CITES CoP18 meeting in Geneva, here! Featured image © Bonie Dewantara

Update to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: trends for ASAP Species

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Southeast Asia is a global hotspot for species richness and diversity. Sadly, much of this biodiversity is increasingly threatened. As of July 2019, 221 land and/or freshwater vertebrate species found in Southeast Asia are now listed as Critically Endangered (CR) by the IUCN Red List of Threatened SpeciesTM – indicative that these species face an extremely high risk of extinction in the wild. This is an increase from the previous count of 199 species from earlier this year, with freshwater…

IUCN SSC Asian Songbird Trade Specialist Group meets for the first time in Jurong Bird Park, Singapore

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The dramatic crash in songbird populations brings together a group of experts committed to ensuring that Southeast Asian forests remain filled with birdsong for decades to come.  The sad plight of songbirds The songbird trade has caused massive declines in many species in the region. Because of it, ASAP bird species such as the Rufous-fronted Laughingthrush Garrulax rufifrons, Straw-headed Bulbul Pycnonotus zeylanicus and Javan Green Magpie Cissa thalassina have disappeared in many of their old haunts. The Javan Green Magpie has practically vanished…

In one Indonesian province, songbird trade is on the decline

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Planet Indonesia’s integrated approach has been successful at tackling some of the biggest regional conservation challenges. Read more about their methodology in the article they’ve kindly penned for us below. Check out their website to find out more about their songbird trade work! Article by Planet Indonesia “A real man has a wife, a horse, a house, a dagger and a songbird.” A Javanese saying that highlights the cultural value of songbirds in Indonesia, where they’re used in competitions and…

ASAP launches 2018-2023 strategy for species on the brink

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Read our 2018-2023 strategy Today, the Asian Species Action Partnership (ASAP) launches its 2018-2023 strategy, outlining how it will work towards its vision: Species extinctions in Southeast Asia have been averted and wild populations are secure and thriving across their natural range Averting species extinctions in Southeast Asia is now widely recognised as an important component to maintaining healthy ecosystems and human well-being. The region is incredibly important on a global scale for biodiversity, but it sadly has very high…

Freshwater fish – the importance of updating conservation status

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This week ASAP Director, Nerissa Chao, is attending an IUCN Red Listing workshop for Freshwater Fishes in the Sunda region. For the entire week, experts are discussing and reviewing the status of freshwater fish species. But why is this important, and what does IUCN Red Listing lead to? A focus on freshwater fish According to Mittermeier et al., 2010, freshwater ecosystems cover an estimated 0.8% of the world’s surface, yet support up to 12% of the world’s known species. Despite…

Singapore’s national plan to save the Sunda pangolin

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Being the world’s most trafficked mammal has brought the pangolin to the brink globally. But a new national strategy will ensure the Sunda pangolin will continue to find refuge in Singapore.   Conservationists from Singapore and beyond have developed a Sunda pangolin National Conservation Strategy and Action Plan. The document sets out a 50 year road-map for securing a thriving future for the Sunda pangolin in Singapore. Mr Desmond Lee, Minister for Social and Family Development and Second Minister for…

Conservation plan to save the Helmeted Hornbill launched

Helmeted Hornbill. Credit: SANJITPAAL SINGH/
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Today we launch a new 10-year conservation strategy and action plan to protect the Helmeted Hornbill (Rhinoplax vigil). It includes calls for increased funding to scale-up conservation attention on a bird that has seen a recent surge in international trade. About the bird The eye-catching Helmeted Hornbill has a relatively short bill, with a distinctive red helmet. The unique call of the male can be heard over a huge 2 km distance. Adults can grow up to 1.2 metres, and…