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The need for IUCN species distribution update - the case from a large threaten ungulate in Southwest China
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  • Tianpei Guan,
  • Jacob Owens,
  • Jian Yang,
  • Kong Yang,
  • Xiaodong Gu,
  • Yanling Song
Tianpei Guan
Southwest Minzu University

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Jacob Owens
The Los Angeles Zoo & Botanical Gardens
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Jian Yang
Southwest Minzu University
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Kong Yang
Southwest Minzu University
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Xiaodong Gu
Forestry Department of Sichuan Province
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Yanling Song
Institute of Zoology Chinese Academy of Sciences
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Species distributions are one of the fundamental factors needed for understanding and conserving wildlife. While the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species is the primary applied reference for biodiversity conservation, limitations in data availability and analyses of the distributions of some species may limit accurate threat classification assessments and conservation recommendations. Improving the accuracy of species distributions in light of growing data and analytical methods is a key step to increasing the efficacy of the Red List. In this study, we reassessed the distribution of takin (Budorcas taxicolor tibetana), a large ungulate in Sichuan Province, southwest China , classified by the IUCN as vulnerable. Using species distribution models and reported habitat requirements, we updated the takin distribution map. Our updated distribution range in the study area (79,449km2) was 61.31% of current distribution range (CDR) on the IUCN red list. This reduction was in large part due to the inclusion in the CDR of substantial areas of lowland plains, high human disturbance, and non-forest habitat, which provide no suitable habitat for takin. According to our results, suitable takin habitat covered 18.97% of the CDR, suggesting a substantially over-estimated distribution. However, there are high proportions of habitat (40%) still covered by the nature reserve network, indicating the importance of protected areas (PAs) in conservation threaten species. We recommend that experts apply the basic approach presented herein to update the Red List distributions for more species to increase the accuracy of assessments and resulting conservation applications.
06 Mar 2022Submitted to Ecology and Evolution
08 Mar 2022Submission Checks Completed
08 Mar 2022Assigned to Editor
10 Mar 2022Reviewer(s) Assigned
07 Apr 2022Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
12 Apr 2022Editorial Decision: Revise Minor
01 May 20221st Revision Received
02 May 2022Submission Checks Completed
02 May 2022Assigned to Editor
02 May 2022Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
06 May 2022Editorial Decision: Revise Minor
01 Jun 20222nd Revision Received
01 Jun 2022Submission Checks Completed
01 Jun 2022Assigned to Editor
01 Jun 2022Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
06 Jun 2022Editorial Decision: Revise Minor
22 Jun 20223rd Revision Received
22 Jun 2022Submission Checks Completed
22 Jun 2022Assigned to Editor
22 Jun 2022Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
22 Jul 2022Editorial Decision: Accept