Feb 1

We’ve asked conservation organisations around the world to nominate a species that they believe to be overlooked, underappreciated and unloved, and tell us why they think that they deserve a fair share of the limelight, this Valentine’s Day.

Each nominee’s story is featured on the Arkive blog with information on the species, what makes them so special, the conservation organisation that nominated them and how they are working to save them from extinction.

Click the ‘unloved species’ tag above to see all of the nominations and their blogs.

Once you have perused the blogs you can vote for your favourite to help get them into the top ten unloved species and get them the recognition that they truly deserve! Share your favourite with others using the #LoveSpecies hashtag on Twitter and Facebook and tell them why they should vote for them too. Voting closes on February 14th at 23:59 PST (07:59 GMT).

Join us and our conservation partners in celebrating and raising awareness for some of the world’s most unloved species this Valentine’s Day!

Species: Eurasian curlew

Nominated by: British Trust for Ornithology (BTO)

Conservation status: Near Threatened

Why do you love it? If you’ve been lucky enough to hear a curlew’s distinctive bubbling call when walking over wild moorland or coastal marsh, it will most likely have stayed with you forever. There’s nothing quite like the sound of the curlew resounding across a windswept mudflat or remote heather moorland. That long curly beak and large size make it one of the easiest wading birds to identify too. Taken together, these characteristics mean that the curlew holds a special place in the heart of many people who enjoy the outdoors in the UK.

What are the threats to the Eurasian curlew? The curlew is one of our most rapidly declining breeding bird species showing a 46% decline across the UK over the last twenty years. The UK holds 28% of the European breeding population and in response to these declines, and those seen elsewhere in Europe, the species has recently been listed as globally Near Threatened, one of the few British species on this list. We don’t know why the curlew is declining so rapidly but we know that there are many threats including increases in predators, afforestation of marginal hill land, changes in farming practice reducing habitat quality, climate change, & disturbance.

What are you doing to save it? We monitor curlew through several of our volunteer bird monitoring schemes. A crucial next step in reversing the dire outlook for our curlew is to understand what is causing their decline. We have planned a programme of scientific research to examine the drivers of population change for curlew.

Find out more about the Eurasian curlew and the BTO

Discover more species in the scolopacidae family on Arkive