Biodiversity

Species Profile and Threats Database


For information to assist proponents in referral, environmental assessments and compliance issues, refer to the Policy Statements and Guidelines (where available), the Conservation Advice (where available) or the Listing Advice (where available).
 
In addition, proponents and land managers should refer to the Recovery Plan (where available) or the Conservation Advice (where available) for recovery, mitigation and conservation information.

EPBC Act Listing Status Listed marine
Listed migratory - Bonn, CAMBA, JAMBA, ROKAMBA
Adopted/Made Recovery Plans
Other EPBC Act Plans Background Paper to the Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2005c) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
 
Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
 
Policy Statements and Guidelines Marine bioregional plan for the North-west Marine Region (Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC), 2012y) [Admin Guideline].
 
Draft Significant impact guidelines for 36 migratory shorebirds Draft EPBC Act Policy Statement 3.21 (Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA), 2009aj) [Admin Guideline].
 
Draft background paper to EPBC Act policy statement 3.21 (Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA), 2009bc) [Admin Guideline].
 
Shorebirds - A Vulnerability Assessment for the Great Barrier Reef (Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA), 2011i) [Admin Guideline].
 
Seagrass - A Vulnerability Assessment for the Great Barrier Reef (Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA), 2011k) [Admin Guideline].
 
Federal Register of
    Legislative Instruments
List of Migratory Species (13/07/2000) (Commonwealth of Australia, 2000b) [Legislative Instrument].
 
Declaration under section 248 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 - List of Marine Species (Commonwealth of Australia, 2000c) [Legislative Instrument].
 
Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 - Listed Migratory Species - Approval of an International Agreement (Commonwealth of Australia, 2007h) [Legislative Instrument].
 
State Government
    Documents and Websites
QLD:Shorebirds (Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (DEHP), 2013bi) [Internet].
Non-statutory Listing Status
IUCN: Listed as Least Concern (Global Status: IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: 2013.1 list)
Scientific name Calidris ruficollis [860]
Family Scolopacidae:Charadriiformes:Aves:Chordata:Animalia
Species author (Pallas,1776)
Infraspecies author  
Reference  
Distribution map Species Distribution Map

This is an indicative distribution map of the present distribution of the species based on best available knowledge. See map caveat for more information.

Illustrations Google Images

Scientific name: Calidris ruficollis

Common name: Red-necked Stint

Other names: Rufous-necked Stint, Little Sandpiper, Land Snipe, Least Sandpiper, Eastern Little Stint or Little Stint (Higgins & Davies 1996).


The Red-necked Stint is monotypic, meaning no subspecies are currently recognised (Higgins & Davies 1996).

The Red-necked Stint is a small Calidridinae approximately 13–16 cm in length and is the smallest shorebird in Australia (Geering et al. 2007). It weighs 25 g and has a wingspan between 29 and 33 cm. The species is characterised by a small head, steep rounded forehead, and long thickset body with an attenuated rear end. Other distinguishing features include short legs, a short, straight (or slightly decurved) bill with a slight bulbous or finely pointed tip. At rest the folded primaries reach slightly over the tip of the tail (rarely short of the tip). In flight all plumages show typical patterns of Stints, with white wing bars, white sides to a black centered rump and upper tail colours. The species has a variety of plumages depending on age, sex and time or year. Calls are important in identification. Sexes are similar, however, breeding adults are distinct from non-breeding adults as well as from juveniles (Higgins & Davies 1996).

It is distributed along most of the Australian coastline with large densities on the Victorian and Tasmanian coasts. The Red-necked Stint has been recorded in all coastal regions, and found inland in all states when conditions are suitable. The Red-necked Stint probably travels in flocks and has been observed to feed in dense flocks. The Australian population was estimated at 353 000 (Watkins 1993). Sites of international importance and maximum or average counts (Watkins 1993) in Australia include:

  • The Coorong, South Australia, 63 800
  • Eighty Mile Beach, Western Australia, 60 000
  • South East Gulf of Carpentaria, Queensland, 35 200
  • Penrice Saltfields, South Australia, 29 000
  • Port Hedland Saltworks, Western Australia, 23 000
  • Corner and Shallow Inlets, Victoria, 20 338
  • Roebuck Bay, Western Australia, 19 800
  • Wilson Inlet, Western Australia, 15 252
  • Werribee-Avalon, Victoria, 13 417
  • Alfred Cove Nature Reserve, Western Australia, 10 000
  • Altona, Victoria, 9536
  • Lake Macleod, Western Australia, 8312
  • Peel Inlet, Western Australia, 8063
  • Spencer Gulf, South Australia, 7600
  • Swan Bay - Mud Islands, Victoria, 7207
  • Lake George, South Australia, 5977
  • Westernport Bay, Victoria, 5783
  • Kangaroo Island, South Australia, 5600
  • Gippsland Lakes, Victoria, 5397
  • Anderson Inlet, Victoria, 5000
  • Price Saltfields, South Australia, 4832.

A full count of Eighty Mile Beach in 1998 recorded 16 766 birds while in 2001, the the count yielded 24 005. Many thousands have been recorded in the Cooper Basin (C.D.T Minton 2002, pers. comm.). The Red-necked Stint is also regularly recorded in small numbers in New Zealand, and recorded from Norfolk Island, Lord Howe Island, Macquarie Island, and Auckland Island (Higgins & Davies 1996).

Breeding distribution

The Red-necked Stint breeds in Siberia and sporadically in north and west Alaska, probably from Taymyr region to Anadyr Territory and Koryakland. Though these limits are not well known, they are believed to include: the delta of the Lena River, Kresta Bay, the Chukotsky Peninsula, and the Anadyr Territory Koryakland; possibly around Ust-Yansk, Kurile Island and in Ussuriland; at Point Barrow and Seward Peninsula; possibly St Lawrence Island. (Higgins & Davies 1996). The Lena Delta appears to be a particularly important breeding area (C.D.T. Minton 2002, pers. comm.).

Migration

The Red-necked Stint is a common passage migrant through Japan, the Korean Peninsula, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Malaysia, the Philippines and West Micronesia. It spends winter in Australasia, mostly in Australia, with smaller numbers in New Guinea and New Zealand. Small numbers are known to spend winter in east India, the Gulf of Thailand, the Malay Peninsula and Indonesia. There are sporadic records on the Pacific coast of northern America and rare or accidental sightings in the British Isles, Germany, north-east United States of America, and islands of the south-west Pacific (Higgins & Davies 1996).
Population

The Australian population was estimated at 353 000 (Watkins 1993) and world population at 471 000 (Rose & Scott 1997). The latest estimate of world population may be as low as 315 000 (Delany & Scott 2002). Most recent reports indicate the following global distribution during the non-breeding season (Bamford et al. 2008):


Country Estimate
Australia 260 000
Philippines 12 000
China 12 000
Indonesia 7000
Malaysia 6000
Papua New Guinea 4000
Thailand 4000
Vietnam 2000
other countries 2100
TOTALS: 309 100


During the non-breeding season, over 80% (260 000) of the global population resides in Australia. The population moves in and out of Australia's jurisdiction during breeding and non-breeding periods. All important migration sites during the non-breeding period are located in Australia. Important breeding sites occur exclusively in Russia and Alaska. Important migration sites for both north and south migrations occur in Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, South Korea, Russia and China (Bamford et al. 2008). Intertidal regions in east Asia, affected by human development, pose a serious threat to the Australian population (Milton 2003).

The Red-necked Stint has been reasonably well surveyed. A review by Bamford and colleagues (2008) examines all shorebirds that utilise the East Asian-Australasian Flyway. The review provides a comprehensive summary of the population dynamics of the Red-Necked Stint. Notable contributions to the review include Barter (1995), Barter and Harris (2002), Lane (1987), Skewes (2003), Rogers and Gosbell (2006) and Watkins (1993).

The Red-necked Stint has a global population estimate of between 315 000 and 353 000 (Watkins 1993).

During the non-breeding season, over 80% (260 000) of the global population resides in Australia. The population moves in and out of Australia's jurisdiction during breeding and non-breeding periods. All important migration sites during the non-breeding period are located in Australia. Important breeding sites occur exclusively in Russia and Alaska. Important migration sites for both north and south migrations occur in Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, South Korea, Russia and China (Bamford et al. 2008). Intertidal regions in east Asia, affected by human development, pose a serious threat to the Australian population (Milton 2003).

During the non-breeding season, over 80% (260 000) of the global population resides in Australia. The population moves in and out of Australia's jurisdiction during breeding and non-breeding periods. All important migration sites during the non-breeding period are located in Australia. Important breeding sites occur exclusively in Russia and Alaska. Important migration sites for both north and south migrations occur in Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, South Korea, Russia and China (Bamford et al. 2008). Intertidal regions in east Asia, affected by human development, pose a serious threat to the Australian population (Milton 2003).

During the 1980s, count data indicated high numbers of Red-necked Stints in Australia. There was a decline in the abundance of the species in Australia during the early 1990s due to poor breeding success (Watkins 1993) while more recent counts indicate an increasing population due to successful breeding (Rogers & Gosbell 2006).

Fluctuations in population numbers are typical of migratory birds. The population is lowest prior to breeding period and greatest just after breeding. There are no reported major fluctuations in population numbers (Bamford et al. 2008).

Ramsar wetlands used by the Red-necked Stint include:

  • Eighty Mile Beach, Western Australia
  • The Coorong, South Australia
  • Eastern Port Phillip Bay, Victoria
  • Corner Inlet, Victoria; Roebuck Bay, Western Australia
  • Gippsland Lakes and Western Port Bay, Victoria
  • Logan Lagoon, Tasmania
  • Derwent Estuary (Pittwater), Tasmania.

In Australasia, the Red-necked Stint is mostly found in coastal areas, including in sheltered inlets, bays, lagoons and estuaries with intertidal mudflats, often near spits, islets and banks and, sometimes, on protected sandy or coralline shores. Occasionally they have been recorded on exposed or ocean beaches, and sometimes on stony or rocky shores, reefs or shoals. They also occur in saltworks and sewage farms; saltmarsh; ephemeral or permanent shallow wetlands near the coast or inland, including lagoons, lakes, swamps, riverbanks, waterholes, bore drains, dams, soaks and pools in saltflats. They sometimes use flooded paddocks or damp grasslands. They have occasionally been recorded on dry gibber plains, with little or no perennial vegetation (Higgins & Davies 1996).
Habitat for feeding
The Red-necked Stint mostly forages on bare wet mud on intertidal mudflats or sandflats, or in very shallow water; mostly in areas with a film of surface water and mostly close to edge of water. During high tides they sometimes forage in non-tidal wetlands. Red-necked Stints may also forage in samphire, generally avoid beds of seagrass, but may feed along edges. On Lake Reeve, Victoria, they have been reported to occasionally feed on algal mats. In south-east Tasmania they have been observed foraging on duckweed in a lagoon. In Westernport Bay, Victoria, they forage on beaches without mangroves. On Pelsaert Island, Western Australia, they have been recorded foraging on mud beneath mangroves. On sandy ocean beaches they sometimes forage in beachcast seaweed. They have been recorded foraging in flooded paddocks and in a freshly cropped lucerne paddock near lagoons (Higgins & Davies 1996).

Habitat for roosting
The Red-necked Stint roosts on sheltered beaches, spits, banks or islets, of sand, mud, coral or shingle, sometimes in saltmarsh or other vegetation. They occasionally roost on exposed reefs or shoals (Higgins & Davies 1996). Large numbers sometimes roost on ocean beaches, though it is probably not a preferred habitat and use of this habitat may increase when high numbers of birds are present (C.D.T. Minton 2002, pers. comm.). They were once recorded roosting c. 1.5 km from an inland lake, in close-cropped grass. They also roost among beachcast seaweed or clods of mud or dried cow-pats (Hobbs 1961). During very high tides they may use sand dunes or claypans. Large numbers (an estimated 7967 birds) were recorded roosting at an inland claypan near Roebuck Bay in north-west Western Australia (Collins et al. 2001).
Habitat needed for refuge from events such as fire, drought or flood
About a day after a cyclone had passed through Broome, lower than expected numbers (250 birds) were seen in Roebuck Bay. The birds presumably moved to sheltered areas to avoid the high winds and heavy rain (Collins et al. 2001).

The Red-necked Stint usually lays four eggs (sometimes three), and both parents incubate, for around 20–22 days. The female parent leaves soon after hatching but the male remains and usually tends the chicks for 16–17 days until they fledge. The Red-necked Stint probably breeds for the first time at two years of age, though first-year birds that remain in Australia during winter sometimes show traces of breeding plumage. It is estimated that the annual survival rate is up to 75% while individuals have been known to live over 18 years (C.D.T. Minton 2002, pers. comm.).
The Red-necked Stint does not breed in Australia (del Hoyo et al. 1996).

The Red-necked Stint nests at a density of up to 28 pairs/km², though more often at 4–6 pairs/km². They exhibit low nest site fidelity and nest in a shallow depression lined with leaves and grass (del Hoyo et al. 1996).

The Red-necked Stint nests on the ground (del Hoyo et al. 1996) and is therefore vulnerable to predation.

The Red-necked Stint breeds in Siberia and west Alaska, laying its eggs in June (del Hoyo et al. 1996).

The Red-necked Stint is omnivorous. In Australia it is known to forage on intertidal and near-coastal wetlands. It jabs and probes with its bill into the soft mud for small invertebrates. It also gleans from plants in saltmarsh and water (Higgins & Davies 1996).

The Red-necked Stint forages on plant seeds (such as from Ruppia spp. and Polygonum spp.) and on a range of marine worms, molluscs, snails and slugs, shrimps, spiders, beetles, flies and ants. The Red-necked Stint also eats grit (Higgins & Davies 1996).
The Red-necked Stint sometimes feeds in dense flocks that spread out as the tide recedes. They often feed with other species, especially Sharp-tailed Sandpipers (Calidris acuminata) and Curlew Sandpipers (Calidris ferruginea) (Higgins & Davies 1996).

Migration patterns
The Red-necked Stint is migratory and breeds in Siberia and west Alaska and then moves to non-breeding areas south of c. 25° S in south-east Asia and Australasia (Higgins & Davies 1996).

Departure from breeding grounds
In the east Chukotski Peninsula, failed breeders may leave in June, females from mid-July, males by early August, and juveniles from mid-August. Birds from Alaska may pass through Aleutian and Pribilof Island to migrate south with the Siberian populations. Some Red-necked Stints may spend boreal winter in Americas. Some Siberian birds migrate overland, passing the Krasnoyarsk, Irkutsk and Buryatskaya regions from mid-July to September. In Russia they have been recorded as far west as Kazakhstan. Some cross Mongolia and Manchuria and may move across central China. Others move along the coast of east Asia with some crossing the Sea of Okhotsk. Some are known to move through Ussuriland from early August while many pass through Japan and Korea from August-October. In China they also pass through the north-east coast from mid-July to October and common south-east coasts from early September-early October. Many pass through the south of Taiwan from early August to mid-October and also Hong Kong from August-November. They are also known to pass through Burma, Vietnam, Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Borneo, Wallacea, West Micronesia and Indonesia. They are a common passage migrant in New Guinea from early August-December (Higgins & Davies 1996).

Arrival in Australia
The Red-necked Stint arrives in Australia from August (and possibly July), with most from early September. Some Red-necked Stints are known to pass through the Torres Strait. In north Australia, adults start arriving from the third week of August and most arrive before the end of September. Juveniles begin to arrive in late September and early October, and most arrive by early November. Arrival times in southern Australia are only a couple of weeks later (C.D.T. Minton 2002, pers. comm.). From north-west Australia, some move to south-west Australia, possibly moving along the west coast. From August-December others cross the continent towards the south, south-east and east coasts. During the same time period (although mostly in September) some pass through Gulf St Vincent, South Australia (Higgins & Davies 1996).

Non-breeding
In south-east Australia, many Red-necked Stints occur on inland wetlands during October and November, moving to marine embayments by December. In north-east Queensland, numbers fluctuate erratically during December and January, with most leaving northern sites by the end of February. Numbers at marine embayments in south and south-eastern Australia are stable from December until early March or April. Once established at non-breeding sites in south-east Australia, most move about the local area. First-year birds seem to move around more than adults. Some movements appear dispersive, for example some Red-necked Stints have been observed to leave wetlands affected by drought and move to recently filled ephemeral wetlands. Birds in some non-coastal wetlands in north Australia apparently leave before or at onset of wet season (Higgins & Davies 1996).

Return to breeding grounds
The Red-necked Stint leaves Australia from late February or March through to April. A few, however, may remain until May (Higgins & Davies 1996). Generally, in both north and south Australia, north migration does not commence until the last week of March, with most birds leaving in April (C.D.T. Minton 2002, pers. comm.). The Red-necked Stint is thought to be able to fly from Tasmania to north-west Australia non-stop, though large numbers sometimes pass through South Australia in February or March. Most birds from south-east Australia appear to migrate across the continent, but some move up the east coast (Higgins & Davies 1996). Birds in Victoria gain enough weight to fly to north Australia non-stop, or even directly to Indonesia (Rogers et al. 1996). From north-west Australia, most are thought to fly non-stop to Vietnam or south China, then proceed inland direct to breeding grounds. Large numbers have been recorded in the Daursky marshes area, and large flocks have been seen moving through Mongolia late May-early June (C.D.T. Minton 2002, pers. comm.). Most birds leave New Zealand from March-April. Many pass through New Guinea from March-April. The birds are more common on the west coast of Peninsular Malaysia on north migration, but also on the smaller passage through Brunei, where the greatest numbers occur from January-late May. They have been recorded in Wallacea from April-June. They then pass Olango Island in the Philippines from February-April (mostly in March). More pass through Hong Kong on north migration than south migration from late March to late May, with most from mid-April to mid-May. They pass through south Taiwan from late April to mid-May and move through the Chinese coast and both coasts of Korea from April-May. They are also common in Japan. They cross Ussuriland in late May and early June and arrive at nesting grounds from June (Higgins & Davies 1996).

Breeding
Many first-year birds winter in both south and north Australia. Some may move north during winter (e.g. from Tasmania to mainland) or move inland. They also winter in New Zealand (Higgins & Davies 1996).

Migratory pathways and important sites
Key staging areas are the Chinese coast on north migration and Japan on south migration. The Yellow Sea supports about 30% of the population during north migration (Higgins & Davies 1996). Migration occurs through Transbaikalia (Russia) and adjacent regions of Mongolia, and there are important staging areas on Lake Baikal and in the Torey Depression (Goroshko 1999).

This species is fairly similar to the Little Stint, Calidris minuta, in all plumages, but the Little Stint is very uncommon in Australia. It is sometimes confused with the Sanderling, C. alba, which has superficially similar breeding and non-breeding plumages. The Sanderling is larger, with a slightly longer, heavier bill and longer legs, and can be distinguished by its lack of hindtoe (Higgins & Davies 1996).

There is a distinct difference between breeding and non-breeding adults and juveniles.

Breeding adults

In breeding adults the head, neck and centre of upper breast are light rufous with course black streaks on the centre of the forehead and crown. They also have finer streaks on the nape and hind neck with a diffuse dusty loral stripe broadening in front of eye. In very fresh plumage, all the feathers on the head and neck have narrow whitish tips. The underbody is white to the rump. The uppertail coverts have a black line through the centre with a pale-grey tail. The legs and feet are black. The mantle appears coarsely streaked black and rufous with usually distinct broad yellow or cream lines along sides (not forming a complete V). The lower breasts to undertail coverts are white with black streaks restricted to the neck lace and encircling the lower breast and fore flanks (Higgins & Davies 1996).

Adult non-breeding
The centre of the forehead, crown, nape, hindneck, and sides of the malor area are white. There is also a prominent white supercilium from the hill to above the rear eye coverts. They have are brownish-grey ear coverts, finely streaked and sparkled dark along lower edge that merges into the white of lower face. The underbody is white with diffuse grey-brownish patches at the sides of the foreneck and upper breast (Higgins & Davies 1996).

Juveniles
The major features of juveniles include a large variation of the rufous tones and dark feather centres on upperparts. In some birds they are bright while in others they are colourless and grey. A dark loral stripe and whitish sides to the forehead stand out as the most prominent feature. The supercilium is dull and white often forming over the bill to form a dull forehead. A narrow dark loral stripe broadens in the front of the eye. This sometimes combines with the brownish grey and finely streaked upper ear coverts to form a dark eye stripe. The centre of the forehead and crown is light rufous-brown with coarse black streaks forming the central ridge, with paler more finely streaked sides of the crown (Higgins & Davies 1996).

Global threats
There are a number of threats that affect migratory shorebirds in the East Asian-Australasian Flyway. The greatest threat is indirect and direct habitat loss (Melville 1997). Staging areas used during migration through eastern Asia are being lost and degraded by activities which are reclaiming the mudflats for development or developing them for aquaculture (Barter 2002, 2005c; Ge et al. 2007; Round 2006). This is especially evident in the Yellow Sea, where at least 40% of intertidal areas have been reclaimed. This process is continuing at a rapid rate and may accelerate in the near future (Barter 2002, 2005c). For example, in South Korea, the Mangyeung and Dongjin River estuaries each supported 5% of the combined estimated Flyway populations (and are the most important sites for this species on both northern and southern migration) but they are currently being reclaimed as part of the Saemangeum Reclamation Project (Barter 2002, 2005c). The 33 km sea-wall across these two estuaries was completed in April 2006, resulting in significant change in the 40 100 ha area.

Reclamation is also a threat in other areas of the Flyway, such as in Malaysia (Wei et al. 2006). In addition, water regulation and diversion infrastructure in the major tributaries have resulted in the reduction of water and sediment flows (Barter 2002; Barter et al. 1998).

Migratory shorebirds are also adversely affected by pollution, both on passage and in non-breeding areas (Harding et al. 2007; Melville 1997; Round 2006; Wei et al. 2006).

Disturbance from human activities, including recreation, shellfish harvesting, fishing and aquaculture is likely to increase significantly in the future (Barter et al. 2005c; Davidson & Rothwell 1993).

It is predicted that the rate of decrease in the intertidal area in the Yellow Sea will accelerate (Barter 2002). In addition, intensive oil exploration and extraction, and reduction in river flows due to upstream water diversion, are other potentially significant threats in parts of China where this species is present in internationally significant numbers (Barter 2005c; Barter et al. 1998).

Global warming and associated changes in sea level are likely to have a long-term impact on the breeding, staging and non-breeding grounds of migratory waders (Harding et al. 2007).

Hunting is still a very serious problem for waders in China, and this species is sometimes caught (Ming et al. 1998).

Threats within Australia
Within Australia, there are a number of threats common to most migratory shorebirds, including the Red-necked Stint.

Habitat loss
The loss of important habitat reduces the availability of foraging and roosting sites. This affects the ability of the birds to build up the energy stores required for successful migration and breeding. Some sites are important all year round for juveniles who may stay in Australia throughout the breeding season until they reach maturity. A variety of activities may cause habitat loss. These include direct losses through land clearing, inundation, infilling or draining. Indirect loss may occur due to changes in water quality, hydrology or structural changes near roosting sites (DEWHA 2009aj).

Habitat degradation
As most migratory shorebirds have specialized feeding techniques, they are particularly susceptible to slight changes in prey sources and foraging environments. Activities that cause habitat degradation (DEWHA 2009aj) include, but are not restricted to:

  • loss of marine or estuarine vegetation, which is likely to alter the dynamic equilibrium of sediment banks and mudflats
  • invasion of intertidal mudflats by weeds such as cord grass
  • water pollution and changes to the water regime
  • changes to the hydrological regime
  • exposure of acid sulphate soils, hence changing the chemical balance at the site.
Disturbance
Disturbance can result from residential and recreational activities including; fishing, power boating, four wheel driving, walking dogs, noise and night lighting. While some disturbances may have only a low impact it is important to consider the combined effect of disturbances with other threats. Roosting and foraging birds are sensitive to discrete, unpredictable disturbances such as loud noises (i.e. construction sites) and approaching objects (i.e. boats). Sustained disturbances can prevent shorebirds from using parts of the habitat (DEWHA 2009aj).

Direct mortality
Direct mortality is a result of human activities around the migration pathways of shorebirds and at roosting and foraging sites. Examples include the construction of wind farms in migration or movement pathways, bird strike due to aircraft, hunting, chemical and oil spills (DEWHA 2009aj).

Governments and conservation groups have undertaken a wide range of activities relating to migratory shorebird conservation (AGDEH 2005c) both in Australia and in cooperation with other countries associated with the East Asian-Australasian Flyway.

Australia
The Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (AGDEH 2006f) outlines national activities to support flyway shorebird conservation initiatives and provides a strategic framework to ensure these activities and future research and management actions are integrated and remain focused on the long-term survival of migratory shorebird populations and their habitats.

Since 1996–97, the Australian Government has invested approximately $5 000 000 of Natural Heritage Trust (NHT) funding in projects contributing to migratory shorebird conservation (DEWHA 2007e). This funding has been distributed across a range of important projects, including the implementation of a nationally coordinated monitoring programme that will produce robust, long-term population data able to support the conservation and effective management of shorebirds and their habitat; migration studies using colour bands and leg flags; and development of a shorebird conservation toolkit to assist users to develop and implement shorebird conservation projects.

Birds Australia is currently co-ordinating the Shorebirds 2020 project, which aims to monitor shorebird populations at important sites throughout Australia; and Birdlife International is identifying sites and regions which are important to various species of birds, including shorebirds, and the processes that are affecting them. The aim is to inform decisions on the management of shorebird habitat. It may be possible to rehabilitate some degraded wetlands or to create artificial wader feeding or roosting sites to replace those destroyed by development, such as by creating artificial sandflats and sand islands from dredge spoil and by building breakwaters (Dening 2005; Straw 1992a, 1999).

The Significant impact guidelines for 36 migratory shorebirds Draft EPBC Act Policy Statement 3.21 (DEWHA 2009aj) provides guidelines for determining the impacts of proposed actions on migratory shorebirds. The policy statement also provides mitigation strategies to reduce the level and extent of those impacts.

International
Australia has played an important role in building international cooperation to conserve migratory birds. In addition to being party to international agreements on migratory species, Australia is also a member of the Partnership for the Conservation of Migratory Waterbirds and the Sustainable Use of their Habitats in the East Asian-Australasian Flyway (Flyway Partnership), which was launched in Bogor, Indonesia on 6 November 2006. Prior to this agreement, Australia was party to the Asia-Pacific Migratory Waterbird Conservation Strategy and the Action Plan for the Conservation of Migratory Shorebirds in the East Asian-Australasian Flyway and the East Asian-Australasian Shorebird Site Network.

The East Asian-Australasian Flyway Site Network, which is part of the broader Flyway Partnership, promotes the identification and protection of key sites for migratory shorebirds. Australia has 17 sites in the network (Partnership EAAF 2008):

  • Kakadu National Park, Northern Territory (1 375 940 ha)
  • Parry Lagoons, Western Australia (36 111 ha)
  • Thomsons Lake, Western Australia (213 ha)
  • Moreton Bay, Queensland (113 314 ha)
  • Hunter Estuary, NSW (2916 ha)
  • Corner Inlet, Victoria (51 500 ha)
  • The Coorong, Lake Alexandrina & Lake Albert, South Australia (140 500 ha)
  • Orielton Lagoon, Tasmania (2920 ha)
  • Logan Lagoon, Tasmania (2320 ha)
  • Western Port, Victoria (59 297 ha)
  • Port Phillip Bay (Western Shoreline) and Bellarine Peninsula, Victoria (16 540 ha)
  • Shallow Inlet Marine and Coastal Park, Victoria
  • Discovery Bay Coastal Park, Victoria
  • Bowling Green Bay, Queensland
  • Shoalwater Bay, Queensland
  • Great Sandy Strait, Queensland
  • Currawinya National Park, Queensland.

There have been no mitigation measures developed specifically for this species. However the Significant impact guidelines for 36 migratory shorebirds Draft EPBC Act Policy Statement 3.21 (DEWHA 2009aj) provide guidelines for mitigation strategies for migratory shorebirds in general.

Marine bioregional plans have been developed for four of Australia's marine regions - South-west, North-west, North and Temperate East. Marine Bioregional Plans will help improve the way decisions are made under the EPBC Act, particularly in relation to the protection of marine biodiversity and the sustainable use of our oceans and their resources by our marine-based industries. Marine Bioregional Plans improve our understanding of Australia's oceans by presenting a consolidated picture of the biophysical characteristics and diversity of marine life. They describe the marine environment and conservation values of each marine region, set out broad biodiversity objectives, identify regional priorities and outline strategies and actions to address these priorities. Click here for more information about marine bioregional plans.

The Red-necked Stint has been identified as a conservation value in the North-west (DSEWPaC 2012y) Marine Region. See Schedule 2 of the North-west Marine Bioregional Plan (DSEWPaC 2012y) for regional advice. Maps of Biologically Important Areas have been developed for Red-necked Stint in the North-west (DSEWPaC 2012y) Marine Region and may provide additional relevant information. Go to the conservation values atlas to view the locations of these Biologically Important Areas. The "species group report card - seabirds & migratory shorebirds" for the North-west (DSEWPaC 2012y) Marine Region provides additional information.

There have been several studies on the Red-necked Stint, references for which are captured in Bamford and colleagues (2008).

There is a detailed summary in Marchant and Higgins (1993), and international summaries in Cramp and Simmons (1983) and Wiersma (1996). There are also general discussions and summaries of the ecology, conservation and threats of this species and other shorebirds in Geering and colleagues (2007), Barter (2002) and Watkins (1993).

The Department's Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (AGDEH 2006f), the Background Paper to the Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (AGDEH 2005c) and The Action Plan for Australian Birds (Garnett & Crowley 2000) also contain actions aimed at the conservation of migratory birds within Australia.

The Significant impact guidelines for 36 migratory shorebirds Draft EPBC Act Policy Statement 3.21 (DEWHA 2009aj) provides guidelines for determining the impacts of proposed actions on migratory shorebirds. The policy statement also provides mitigation strategies to reduce the level and extent of those impacts.

The following table lists known and perceived threats to this species. Threats are based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) threat classification version 1.1.

Threat Class Threatening Species References
Agriculture and Aquaculture:Annual and Perennial Non-Timber Crops:Expansion of agriculture including cotton farming Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Biological Resource Use:Hunting and Collecting Terrestrial Animals:Harvesting for recreational purposes Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Climate Change and Severe Weather:Habitat Shifting and Alteration:Global warming and associated sea level changes Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Climate Change and Severe Weather:Temperature Extremes:climate change Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Energy Production and Mining:Mining and Quarrying:Habitat destruction, disturbance and/or modification due to mining activities Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Energy Production and Mining:Oil and Gas Drilling:Exploration drilling Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Energy Production and Mining:Oil and Gas Drilling:Production of oil and gas resources Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Human Intrusions and Disturbance:inappropriate conservation measures Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Recreational Activities:Disturbance, especially from human recreational activities and development Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Competition and/or habitat degradation Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:unspecified Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Natural System Modifications:Dams and Water Management/Use:Alteration of hydrological regimes and water quality Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Natural System Modifications:Dams and Water Management/Use:Alterations to hydrology through water extraction Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Natural System Modifications:Dams and Water Management/Use:Salinity Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Natural System Modifications:Other Ecosystem Modifications:Loss and damage of intertidal areas due to land reclamation Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Pollution:Airborne Agricultural pollutants:Pesticide drift Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Pollution:Industrial and Military Effluents:Habitat degradation due to industrial discharge Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Pollution:Pollution:Changes to water and sediment flows leading to erosion, siltation and pollution Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Pollution:Pollution:Habitat degradation and loss of water quality due to salinity, siltaton, nutrification and/or pollution Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Residential and Commercial Development:Residential and Commercial Development:Habitat modification (clearance and degradation) due to urban development Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Residential and Commercial Development:Tourism and Recreation Areas:Habitat modification, fragmentation and/or changed boat traffic caused by the construction and operation of marinas and wharves Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].
Transportation and Service Corridors:Shipping Lanes:Commerical shipping and port activities Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds (Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2006f) [Wildlife Conservation Plan].

Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH) (2005c). Background Paper to the Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds. [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Department of the Environment and Heritage. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/migratory/publications/pubs/shorebird-plan-background.pdf.

Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH) (2006f). Wildlife Conservation Plan for Migratory Shorebirds. [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Department of the Environment and Heritage. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/migratory/publications/shorebird-plan.html.

Bamford M., D. Watkins, W. Bancroft, G. Tischler & J. Wahl (2008). Migratory Shorebirds of the East Asian - Australasian Flyway: Population estimates and internationally important sites. [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts, Wetlands International-Oceania. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/migratory/publications/shorebirds-east-asia.html.

Barter, M. (1995). For the record - large numbers of Red-necked Stint and Banded Stilt at Lake Reeve, Gippsland, Victoria. The Stilt. 26:36.

Barter, M.A. (2002). Shorebirds of the Yellow Sea: Importance, Threats and Conservation Status. Wetlands International Global Series No. 8, International Wader Studies 12. Canberra, ACT: Wetlands International.

Barter, M.A. (2005c). Yellow Sea-driven priorities for Australian shorebird researchers. In: Straw, P., ed. Status and Conservation of Shorebirds in the East Asian-Australasian Flyway. Proceedings of the Australasian Shorebirds Conference 13-15 December 2003, Canberra, Australia. Sydney, NSW: Wetlands International Global Series 18, International Wader Studies 17.

Barter, M.A. & K. Harris (2002). Occasional count no 6. Shorebird counts in the NE South Australia-SW Queensland region in September-October 2000. The Stilt. 41:44-47.

Barter, M.A., D. Tonkinson, J.Z. Lu, S.Y. Zhu, Y. Kong, T.H. Wang, Z.W. Li & X.M. Meng (1998). Shorebird numbers in the Huang He (Yellow River) Delta during the 1997 northward migration. Stilt. 33:15-26.

Collins, P., A. Boyle, C. Minton & R. Jessop (2001). The importance of inland claypans for waders in Roebuck Bay, Broome, NW Australia. Stilt. 38:4--8.

Cramp, S. & K.E.L. Simmons, eds. (1983). Handbook of the Birds of Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. The Birds of the Western Palearctic. Volume 3, Waders to Gulls. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Davidson, N. & P. Rothwell (1993). Disturbance to waterfowl on estuaries. Wader Study Group Bulletin. 68.

del Hoyo, J., A. Elliott, D.A. Christie & J. Sargatal (1996). Handbook of the Birds of the World: Hoatzin to Auks. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions.

Delany, S. & D. Scott (2002). Waterbird Population Estimates. Wetlands International, Wageningen, the Netherlands. Wetlands International Global Series 12. 3.

Dening, J. (2005). Roost management in south-East Queensland: building partnerships to replace lost habitat. In: Straw, P., ed. Status and Conservation of Shorebirds in the East Asian-Australasian Flyway. Proceedings of the Australasian Shorebirds Conference 13-15 December 2003. Page(s) 94-96. Sydney, NSW. Wetlands International Global Series 18, International Wader Studies 17.

Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) (2007e). Migratory Waterbirds Information Page, Departmental Website. [Online]. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/migratory/waterbirds/index.html#conservation.

Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) (2009aj). Draft Significant impact guidelines for 36 migratory shorebirds Draft EPBC Act Policy Statement 3.21. [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Commonwealth of Australia. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/epbc/publications/migratory-shorebirds.html.

Garnett, S.T. & G.M. Crowley (2000). The Action Plan for Australian Birds 2000. [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Environment Australia and Birds Australia. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/publications/action/birds2000/index.html.

Ge, Z.-M., T-H. Wang, X. Zhou, K.-Y. Wang & W.-Y. Shi (2007). Changes in the spatial distribution of migratory shorebirds along the Shanghai shoreline, China, between 1984 and 2004. Emu. 107:19-27.

Geering, A., L. Agnew, S. Harding, ed. (2007). Shorebirds of Australia. Melbourne, Victoria: CSIRO Publishing.

Goroshko, O.A. (1999). Migration of Red-necked Stint, Calidris ruficollis, through Transbaikalia (Russia) and adjacent regions of north-eastern Mongolia. Stilt. 35:34-40.

Harding, S.B., J.R. Wilson & D.W. Geering (2007). Threats to shorebirds and conservation actions. In: Geering, A., L. Agnew & S. Harding, eds. Shorebirds of Australia. Page(s) 197-213. Melbourne, Victoria: CSIRO Publishing.

Higgins, P.J. & S.J.J.F. Davies, eds (1996). Handbook of Australian, New Zealand and Antarctic Birds. Volume Three - Snipe to Pigeons. Melbourne, Victoria: Oxford University Press.

Hobbs, J.N. (1961). The birds of south-west New South Wales. Emu. 61:21-55.

Lane, B.A. (1987). Shorebirds in Australia. Sydney, NSW: Reed.

Marchant, S. & P.J. Higgins, eds. (1993). Handbook of Australian, New Zealand and Antarctic Birds. Volume 2 - Raptors to Lapwings. Melbourne, Victoria: Oxford University Press.

Melville, D.S. (1997). Threats to waders along the East Asian-Australasian Flyway. In: Straw, P., ed. Shorebird conservation in the Asia-Pacific region. Page(s) 15-34. Melbourne, Victoria: Birds Australia.

Milton, D. (2003). Threatened shorebird species of the East Asian-Australasian Flyway: significance of Australian wader study groups.:105-110.

Ming, M., L. Jianjian, T. Chengjia, S. Pingyue & H. Wei (1998). The contribution of shorebirds to the catches of hunters in the Shanghai area, China, during 1997-1998. Stilt. 33:32-36.

Minton, C. (1996). Analysis of overseas movements of Red-necked Stints and Curlew Sandpipers. Victorian Wader Study Group Bulletin. 20:39-43.

Minton, C.D.T. (2002). Personal communication. Australasian Wader Studies Group.

Partnership for the East Asian-Australasian Flyway (Partnership EAAF) (2008). East Asian-Australasian Flyway Site Network: October 2008. [Online]. Available from: http://www.eaaflyway.net/documents/Flyway-Network-Sites-Oct-08.pdf.

Rogers, K.G.& K. Gosbell (2006). Demographic models for red-necked stint and curlew sandpiper. The Stilt. 50:205-214.

Rogers, K.G., D.I. Rogers, & C.D.T. Minton (1996). Weights and pre-migratory mass gain of the Red-necked Stint, Calidris ruficollis, in Victoria, Australia. Stilt. 29:2-23.

Rose, P.M. & D.A. Scott (1997). Waterfowl population estimates, 2nd edition. Wetlands International Publication No. 44. Wageningen, The Netherlands: Wetlands International.

Round, P.D. (2006). Shorebirds in the Inner Gulf of Thailand. Stilt. 50:96-102.

Skewes, J. (2003). Report on the population monitoring counts, 2002. Stilt. 44:56-62.

Straw, P. (1992a). Relocation of Shorebirds. A Feasibility Study and Management Options. Sydney, NSW: Unpublished report by the Royal Australasian Ornithologists Union for the Federal Airports Corporation.

Straw, P. (1999). Habitat remediation - a last resort?. Stilt. 35:66.

Watkins, D. (1993). A national plan for shorebird conservation in Australia. RAOU Report Series. 90.

Wei, D.L.Z., Y.C. Aik, L.K. Chye, K. Kumar, L.A. Tiah, Y. Chong & C.W. Mun (2006). Shorebird survey of the Malaysian coast November 2004-April 2005. Stilt. 49:7-18.

Wiersma, P. (1996). Charadriidae (Plovers) species accounts. In: del Hoyo, J., A. Elliott & J. Sargatal, eds. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 3. Hoatzin to Auks. Page(s) 411-442. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions.

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This database is designed to provide statutory, biological and ecological information on species and ecological communities, migratory species, marine species, and species and species products subject to international trade and commercial use protected under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act). It has been compiled from a range of sources including listing advice, recovery plans, published literature and individual experts. While reasonable efforts have been made to ensure the accuracy of the information, no guarantee is given, nor responsibility taken, by the Commonwealth for its accuracy, currency or completeness. The Commonwealth does not accept any responsibility for any loss or damage that may be occasioned directly or indirectly through the use of, or reliance on, the information contained in this database. The information contained in this database does not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth. This database is not intended to be a complete source of information on the matters it deals with. Individuals and organisations should consider all the available information, including that available from other sources, in deciding whether there is a need to make a referral or apply for a permit or exemption under the EPBC Act.

Citation: Department of the Environment (2014). Calidris ruficollis in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Canberra. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/sprat. Accessed Sat, 20 Sep 2014 14:41:07 +1000.