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Background to Amphibians on the IUCN Red List

Page history last edited by Ariadne Angulo 13 years, 7 months ago

In 2001, an initiative spearheaded by IUCN in partnership with Conservation International and NatureServe to undertake the first comprehensive assessment of the conservation status of all known amphibian species had begun. This initiative, known as the Global Amphibian Assessment (GAA), was completed in 2004 for all known amphibian species at the time. The GAA data were made available nearly simultaneously in an independent website (www.globalamphibians.org; which is no longer active) kindly provided by NatureServe, and in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. The data in the GAA and the IUCN Red List are one and the same, but the existence of the two websites led to some confusion as many users believed that they were two different datasets, which is why the GAA website was phased out. Following on from the discontinuation of the GAA website, the term “Global Amphibian Assessment” was also retired, so the ongoing assessment of amphibians is now referred to as “Amphibians on the IUCN Red List” (see http://www.iucnredlist.org/amphibians). Again, this was to avoid any confusion that the GAA was a separate process to the IUCN Red Listing of amphibians.

Since 2004, there have also been changes in the central coordinating team of the GAA/Amphibians on the Red List. Dr Simon Stuart is now the IUCN SSC Chair, Janice Chanson has retired from her position as Data Manager within the Biodiversity Assessment Unit (from where the GAA was operated), Mike Hoffmann is now the Senior Scientific Officer at the SSC Chair’s Office, and Neil Cox is now Acting Manager of the Biodiversity Assessment Unit (BAU). Because of these changes, and given changing priorities and budgetary restraints stemming from the current economic climate, a new approach had to be devised. Thus, the Amphibian RLA is now the new central coordinating team responsible for keeping the IUCN amphibian data updated. Currently, updates are reactive in nature (i.e. based on material that is sent to us). Keeping the data updated is an ongoing endeavour which relies heavily on the expertise of hundreds of herpetologists around the globe.


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