The 2015 update of the IUCN Red List has seen Common Pochard uplisted to Vulnerable. Although it remains a familiar species across Europe, North Africa and Asia, with an estimated global population of around 2,100,000 birds, significant declines of up to 50% have occurred in Europe where most of the global population occurs.
The DSG network is beginning work on this species in 2015/16 – an assessment of the sex ratio of the European population will take place in January 2016, and ONCFS have initiated a PhD research programme on the dynamics of the European Common Pochard (and Tufted Duck) populations.
The 2015 Red List also sees Common Eider uplisted to Near Threatened, adding to the growing concern for European seaduck populations that saw Long-tailed Duck and Velvet Scoter added to the Red List in 2012 (although Velvet Scoter has been downlisted to Vulnerable on the latest Red List on account of an apparent decrease in the rate of decline). An Action Plan for European Long-tailed Duck populations will be presented to the Meeting of Parties of the African-Eurasian Waterbird Agreement in Bonn in November 2015.
There was better news for Brown Teal. As a result of concerted conservation effort the number of birds has increased over the past decade and this species has now been downlisted from Endangered to Near Threatened.
The full list of 2015 changes to the Red List for birds can be seen here.