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Quarter of Europe’s Orthoptera Driven to Extinction

Posted by feww on February 13, 2017

European Red List of Grasshoppers, Crickets and Bush-crickets

Nearly 26% of European  Orthoptera species  [and 28% of EU 28’s] are assessed as threatened, according to UCN Red List report on Orthoptera.

However, the exact proportion of threatened species is uncertain… the best estimate of the threatened share of Orthoptera species is thus 28.5% in Europe and 30.6% in the EU 28. Further research on DD species to clarify their status is therefore critical. A further 13.9% (149 species) and 13% (128 species) are considered Near Threatened in Europe and in the EU 28, respectively.


The Western Banded Grasshopper (Arcyptera brevipennis) has a disjunct distribution in south-western and south-eastern Europe and is found in steppe-like Mediterranean vegetation and rocky grassland or shrubland habitats. This Vulnerable species is threatenedby changes in the grazing regime (particularly by abandonment) and afforestation. ©Florin Rutschmann. IUCN Red List report on Orthoptera.

“By comparison, the best estimate of threatened species of those other groups that have been assessed comprehensively in Europe is 58% of freshwater molluscs, 40% of freshwater fishes, 23% of amphibians, 20% of reptiles, 17% of mammals, 16% of dragonflies, 13% of birds, 9% of butterflies and bees, 8% of aquatic plants and marine fishes and 2% of medicinal plants. Additional European Red Lists assessing a selection of species showed that 22% of terrestrial molluscs, 16% of crop wild relatives and 15% of saproxylic beetles are also threatened. No other groups have yet been assessed at the European level.

“Looking at the population trends of European Orthoptera species, 30.2% (325 species) have declining populations, 7.6% (82 species) are believed to be more or less stable and 3.2% (34 species) are increasing. However, the population trends for the majority of species (59%, 634 species) remain unknown.”

Download IUCN Red List report on Orthoptera

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