The State of Nature 2016: One in 10 UK wildlife species faces extinction

state-of-nature

Over 50 wildlife organisations have compiled a stock take (The State of Nature Report) of all our native wildlife and it reveals that more than one in ten of all the species assessed are under threat of disappearing from our shores altogether.

In Scotland, one in every 11 species assessed is at risk of becoming extinct (9%) and for some groups of species that threat is even higher.  For example, 18% of butterflies, 15% of dragonflies and 13% of plants are officially classified as being at risk of extinction. Across the UK as a whole, over one in ten species assessed are under threat of disappearing altogether (13%) and 2% have already become extinct.

The State of Nature 2016 UK report will be launched by Sir David Attenborough in London today (Wednesday, September 14), while separate events are being held to launch the Scottish, Welsh and Irish versions of the report in Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast respectively over the coming week.

Sir David Attenborough said: “The natural world is in serious trouble and it needs our help as never before. The rallying call issued after the State of Nature report in 2013 has promoted exciting and innovative conservation projects. Landscapes are being restored, special places defended, struggling species being saved and brought back. But we need to build significantly on this progress if we are to provide a bright future for nature and for people. The future of nature is under threat and we must work together; governments, conservationists, businesses and individuals, to help it. Millions of people care very passionately about nature and the environment and I believe that we can work together to turn around the fortunes of wildlife.”

Mark Eaton, one of the lead authors on the report, said: “Never before have we known this much about the state of nature in Scotland and the threats it is facing. The partnership and many landowners are using the knowledge we’re gathering to underpin some amazing scientific and conservation work. But more is needed to put nature back where it belongs – we must continue to work to help restore our land and sea for wildlife. There is a real opportunity for the Scottish and UK Governments to build on these efforts and deliver the significant investment and ambitious action needed to bring nature back from the brink. Of course, this report wouldn’t have been possible without the army of dedicated volunteers who brave all conditions to survey Scotland’s wildlife. Knowledge is the most essential tool that a conservationist can have, and without their efforts, our knowledge would be significantly poorer.”

For full copies of the Scottish and UK wide State of Nature 2016 reports, and to find out how you can do your bit to save wildlife visit www.rspb.org.uk/son

The State of Nature 2016 UK partnership includes: A Focus on Nature, A Rocha UK, Association of Local Environmental Records Centres, Amphibian & Reptile Conservation, Bat Conservation Trust, Biological Records Centre, Botanical Society of Britain & Ireland, British Bryological Society, British Dragonfly Society,British Lichen Society, British Pteridological Society, British Trust for Ornithology, Buglife Scotland, Bumblebee Conservation Trust, Butterfly Conservation Scotland, Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, Chartered Institute for Ecology and Environmental Management, Conchological Society of Great Britain and Ireland, Earthwatch Institute, Freshwater Habitats Trusts, Froglife Scotland, Fungus Conservation Trust, iSpotnature (The Open University), John Muir Trust, Mammal Society,Marine Biological Association, Marine Conservation Society, MARINElife, Marine Ecosystem Research Programme, National Trust for Scotland, National Biodiversity Network, National Forum for Biological Recording, Natural History Museum, Orca, People’s Trust for Endangered Species, Plantlife, PREDICTS, Rothamsted Research, RSPB Scotland, Scottish Badgers, Sir Alister Hardy Foundation for Ocean Science, Shark Trust, Sheffield University, Vincent Wildlife Trust, Whale and Dolphin Conservation, The Scottish Wildlife Trust, Woodland Trust Scotland, World Wildlife Fund, Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust, Zoological Society of London.

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