One third of Swiss species under threat

The red-headed Lanius Senator is on the verge of extinction in Switzerland Andreas Gygax

An examination of some 10,000 species of flora and fauna present in Switzerland has found that around a third are threatened to some degree.

This content was published on January 26, 2012 - 12:09

Compiled by the Federal Environment Office, the 27 Red Lists of groups of organisms also revealed that many species have seen their spatial distribution and numbers decline in recent decades.

In all, some 36 per cent of species examined are under threat, with three per cent of those discovered to be extinct in Switzerland. A further five per cent are considered to be on the verge of extinction in the country, including the red-headed Lanius Senator (pictured).  

Of those species under threat, “a considerable proportion” are so because of a deterioration in their natural habitat, the Environment Office said in a statement on Thursday. In particular, intensified agricultural practices and the elimination of natural environmental features such as water courses have impacted habitats.

The Environment Office said that while its research showed that projects to reintroduce species had been generally successful, the amount under threat demonstrated that actions taken until now to guarantee the long-term biodiversity of flora and fauna were insufficient. 

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