Over the weekend we updated/created 44,480 plant global conservation statuses with the IUCN Red List authority.
We were able to match 42,718 directly through their taxon.name and 1,813 through a synonym (invalid taxon_name). That left 210,643 species/ssp/varieties on iNat unmatched and 13,432 plants on the Red List unmatched.
Not external: 210,643
Not internal: 13,432
If a status already existed, we updated the status (e.g. LC, VU etc.) and URLs (IUCN made a change a few years back that left all our links to species pages on the Red List broken). If a taxon had no observations we altered the geoprivacy to match the default position according to the status (e.g. LC=open, VU=obscured, etc.). If the taxon had any observations we did not alter the geoprivacy
If no status existed, one was created with a status and URL matching the IUCN status. If the taxo had less than 100 observations, the geoprivacy was set to the default position (e.g LC=open, VU=obscured, etc.). If the taxon had 100 or more observations the geoprivacy on the new status was set to open. You can see all the 1954 new obscuring statuses that were created in the sheet with that name in this spreadsheet..
Default positions and deviations
98.5% of the IUCN statuses now have geoprivacy that is in the default position with the expectation (e.g. open and secure). And we have 653 deviations from the default positions (e.g. Obscured and secure)
Open and secure: 22,743
Obscured and threatened: 21,072
Obscured and secure: 219
Open and threatened: 434
In the spreadsheet there are sheets that show all the obscured_and_secure and open_and_threatened statuses.
Our ambition is to have all deviations for these IUCN global statuses documented with a flag and have that flag linked to the conservation status. You can help by opening flags on these taxa to help reach agreement on whether to keep or resolve these deviations. And if you are a curator and the consensus is to keep them, you can help by closing the flag and linking to the flag from the conservation status description.
Orphaned IUCN statuses
Global Conservation Statuses with the IUCN Red List Authority that no longer refer to taxa in the Red List were dealt with as follows. Statuses that were open or were on taxa with zero identifications were deleted. 58 remaining statuses (obscuring ones with observations) were edited to remove IUCN Red List as the authority but left in place they are listed in the vestigial_statuses sheet here.
Please inspect them and remove them if they can be safely removed (e.g. if another status such as a national status is already doing the obscuring work) or if the need to be kept please try to add an authority or otherwise flesh out the rationale.
Duplicate global conservation statuses
We’d like to only have one global conservation status and are planning a change to enforce this. Taxa with a IUCN global status as well as another global status with a different authority were addressed as follows. If the two statuses had the same geoprivacy then the duplicate non-IUCN status was deleted. The remaining 41 statuses (all situations where the IUCN status is open and the other status is obscuring) are listed in the duplicate_global_statuses sheet here.
Ideally, we’d like to remove these duplicate global statuses. If the other global status is justification that we should deviate with the IUCN geoprivacy (e.g. obscure a taxon despite a secure status) please put this information in a closed flag and link to to the flag from the IUCN status description.
Thanks for everyone’s patience with this. We’ll proceed with the other big parts of the Red List (arthropods and chordates) soon. This process was meant to have the following goals:
- come up with a repeatable process for updating IUCN Red List statuses
- minimize the number of deviations and come up with a process for documenting the deviations in flags
- minimize the number of changes to geoprivacy that were made
Goals 2 and 3 are in conflict, so we apologies for any taxa that have been obscured that you think should be open (e.g. taxa with <100 obs where new statuses were created) and thanks in advance for your help documenting deviations in geoprivacy in closed flags moving forward and linking to these flags from the status description. If we stick to this convention, it will make this update much much less painless moving forward.