Wild Bird Index: Guidance for national and regional use

Author: Sheehan, D.K., Gregory, R.D., Eaton, M.A., Bubb, P.J., and Chenery, A.M.
Date Published: September 2010
Wild Bird Index: Guidance for national and regional use

This guidance document is one of a series produced with the support of the 2010 Biodiversity Indicators Partnership (2010 BIP) to assist Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) to track their progress towards the 2010 Biodiversity Targets. The Wild Bird Index has been selected as one of the indicators suitable for assessing progress towards and communicating the 2010 target at the global level. The aim of this document is to provide guidance to support the calculation and interpretation of the Wild Bird Index at the national and regional scales.

Birds are recognised as good indicators of environmental change and as useful proxies of wider changes in nature. The Wild Bird Index (WBI) measures average population trends of a suite of representative wild birds, as an indicator of the general health of the wider environment. The WBI is an easy-to-understand indicator that can be calculated for different geographic areas and habitats. This means that different Wild Bird Indices (WBIs) can be produced for areas such as farmland and woodland, or inside and outside protected areas if suitable data is available. It is useful for analysis, interpretation of environmental issues and communication.

The 2010 Biodiversity Indicators Partnership (2010 BIP) intends this guidance to be a ‘living document’. Updated versions will be produced based on users’ feedback, and will include lessons learned and new examples of the indicators use.