First Rapid Action Fund grants made amid COVID-19 impacts

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First Rapid Action Fund grants made amid COVID-19 impacts After recently launching the first ASAP species grant programmes exclusively for ASAP Partners, we are excited to have already been able to award 5 grants under the ASAP Species Rapid Action Fund, addressing urgent conservation needs of ASAP species. Response to the ASAP Species Conservation Grants was overwhelming, with over 50 applications submitted. Only a limited number of projects can be supported, and we will be announcing successful projects in December. …

Bali Myna to benefit from first ASAP emergency grant amid COVID-19 impact

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PRESS RELEASE Bali Myna to benefit from first ASAP emergency grant amid COVID-19 impact The Bali Myna in Indonesia is the first species to benefit from a Rapid Action Fund from the IUCN SSC Asian Species Action Partnership (ASAP). The grant will fund critical conservation action for the bird in Bali, Indonesia where COVID-19 has paralysed tourism and impacted conservation efforts. The first grant from ASAP’s Rapid Action Fund, launched in May this year, has been awarded to the Friends…

Another 5 Southeast Asian primates now Critically Endangered

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Another 5 Southeast Asian primates now Critically Endangered The latest update to the IUCN Red List of Threatened SpeciesTM sees five Southeast Asian primates newly listed as Critically Endangered. The update brings the total number of ASAP species to 235, with new turtle and fish additions too. Our closest biological relatives, primates, make up the largest proportion of the new ASAP species in the latest update to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ in July. Five Southeast Asian species…

ASAP Chair awarded 2020 Blue Planet Prize

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ASAP Chair awarded 2020 Blue Planet Prize   We are delighted that Dr. Simon Stuart, Chair of the ASAP Governing Council, has been awarded the 2020 Blue Planet Prize. The prestigious international environmental award, now in its 29th year, is sponsored by the Asahi Glass Foundation. Every year, two individuals are recognized for their significant contribution to solving global environmental problems. Dr. Stuart was selected out of 127 nominated candidates, and was awarded alongside fellow nominee, Prof. David Tilman. Dr….

Assessing to Plan for Freshwater Fish

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With over 70 Critically Endangered species in Southeast Asia, freshwater fishes are currently the largest group of ASAP species. The fishes include some of the smallest in the world such as Parosphromenus ornaticauda, which is known only from peat swamp forests in Indonesian Borneo. They range in size up to the Mekong Giant Catfish Pangasianodon gigas, the largest freshwater fish in the world, which can grow up to 3 metres long. Fishes are the most often neglected of the ASAP…

ASAP welcomes the Year of the Rat

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Happy Lunar New Year! In the Chinese zodiac cycle, 2020 is the Year of the Rat. The rat represents wealth and abundance, primarily due to rats’ amazing ability to multiply their populations by rapid production of many offspring. Unfortunately, not all species of rats are blessed with the gift of abundance. To many people, rats are pests, associated with back alleys and dustbins. But rats are actually the mammal group which is most rich in species. Most are not pests…

Action Planning to save threatened species in Central Philippines

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ASAP Partner, Talarak Foundation Inc., is based on Negros Island in the Central Philippines and works to provide the long-term protection of threatened and rare Philippine biodiversity through conservation programmes. Recently, they organised and hosted the Western Visayas Conservation Workshop to develop a multi-species conservation strategy to identify the main conservation needs and recommended conservation approach for five key species endemic to the region. Of these, three are ASAP species: the Visayan Warty Pig Sus cebifrons, Rufous-headed Hornbill Rhabdotorrhinus waldeni…

Focus on the Philippines

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Elevated endemism & extinction risks The Philippines is an archipelagic nation, composed of over 7,640 islands, situated in the west Pacific. Its long isolation has resulted in high levels of endemism in its flora and fauna. The fact that the country comprises the entirety of its own biodiversity hotspot is a testament to this! However, this unique biodiversity is under threat. Forest loss in the Philippines has left only 12% of historical primary forest cover remaining (Verburg & Veldkamp 2004)….

Challenges and opportunities for Helmeted Hornbill conservation – article by ASAP Advisor Madhu Rao

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The Helmeted hornbill is highly threatened by poaching for its unique red casque. Find out more about the challenges and potential opportunities for its conservation by reading ASAP Advisor Madhu Rao’s article, following her participation at the CITES CoP18 meeting in Geneva, here! Featured image © Bonie Dewantara

Update to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: trends for ASAP Species

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Southeast Asia is a global hotspot for species richness and diversity. Sadly, much of this biodiversity is increasingly threatened. As of July 2019, 221 land and/or freshwater vertebrate species found in Southeast Asia are now listed as Critically Endangered (CR) by the IUCN Red List of Threatened SpeciesTM – indicative that these species face an extremely high risk of extinction in the wild. This is an increase from the previous count of 199 species from earlier this year, with freshwater…