Endangered animals in the British Isles

Posted in Biology

This is a list of endangered and threatened animals of the British Isles. They are endangered or have reducing populations within the British Isles and may become extinct in the future.

Some suffer because of loss of habitat, but many are in decline following the introduction of foreign species, which out-compete the native species or carry disease. For example the native Red Squirrel population suffered dramatically with the introduction of the American Grey Squirrel, which carries the Squirrel pox virus. This is also the case with Brown Trout, which are cannot compete with the larger and more aggressive Rainbow trout. 


  • Bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus
  • European Hare Lepus europaeus
  • Hazel Dormouse Muscardinus avellanarius
  • European Otter Lutra lutra
  • Greater Horseshoe Bat Rhinolophus ferrumequinium
  • Greater Mouse-eared Bat Myotis myotis (extinct as resident)
  • Harbour Porpoise Phocoena phocoena
  • Red Squirrel Sciurus vulgaris
  • Water Vole Arvicola terrestris  


  • Aquatic Warbler Acrocephalus paludicola (passage migrant through UK)
  • Capercaillie Tatrao urogallus
  • Corn Crake Crex crex - globally threatened
  • Eurasian Wryneck Jynx torquilla (extinct as breeding species)
  • Great Bittern Botarus stellaris
  • Grey Partridge Perdix perdix
  • Osprey Pandion haliaetus - loss of habitat
  • Red-backed Shrike Lanius collurio (extinct as breeding species)
  • Red Kite Milvus milvus - hunting
  • Scottish Crossbill Loxia scotica (endemic)
  • Skylark Alauda arvensis
  • Song Thrush Turdus philomelos
  • Stone-Curlew Burhinus oedicnemus  

Lizzards and Amphibians

  • Sand lizard Lacerta agilis  
  • Great crested newt Triturus cristatus
  • Natterjack toad Bufo calamita  


  • Allis shad Alosa alosa
  • Brown trout - competition from alien species
  • Pollan Coregonus autumnalis pollan
  • Thwaite shad Alosa fallax
  • Vendace Coregonus albula  


  • Black-backed meadow ant Formica pratensis (possibly extinct)
  • Black bog ant Formica candida
  • Narrow-headed ant Formica exsecta
  • Shrill carder bee Bombus sylvarum
  • Beaulieu dung beetle Aphodius niger (a dung beetle)
  • Blue ground beetle Carabus intricatus
  • Bembidion argenteolum (a ground beetle)
  • Crucifix ground beetle Panagaeus crux-major (a ground beetle)
  • Hazel pot beetle Cryptocephalus coryli (a leaf beetle)
  • Lizard weevil Cathormiocerus britannicus (probably endemic)
  • Orbera oculata (a longhorn beetle)
  • Pashford pot beetle Cryptocephalus exiguus (a leaf beetle, probably endemic and extinct)
  • Stag beetle Lucanus cervus
  • Stenus palposus (a rove beetle)
  • Tachys edmonsi (a ground beetle, endemic)
  • Violet click beetle Limoniscus violaceus
  • Bright wave moth Idaea ochrata
  • Heath fritillary Mellicta athalia
  • High brown fritillary Argynnis adippe
  • Large blue butterfly Maculinea arion (endemic subspecies extinct, re-established from Swedish stock)
  • Large copper butterfly Lycaena dispar (endemic subspecies extinct, also earlier re-establishments; re-establishment research ongoing)
  • Marsh fritillary Eurodryas aurinia
  • Netted carpet moth Eustroma reticulata
  • Pearl bordered fritillary Boloria euphrosyne
  • Silver spotted skipper butterfly Hesperia comma
  • Speckled footman moth Coscinia cribraria
  • European mole cricket Gryllotalpa gryllotalpa
  • Southern damselfly Coenagrion mercuriale
  • Callicera spinolae (a hoverfly)
  • Golden hoverfly Chrysotoxum octomaculatum
  • Hornet robberfly Asilus crabroniformis
  • Manx robber fly Machimus cowini (endemic)  


  • White clawed crayfish Austropotamobius pallipes  


  • Desmoulin's whorl snail Vertigo moulinsiana
  • Geyer's whorl snail Vertigo geyeri
  • Glutinous snail Myxas glutinosa
  • Little whirlpool ram's-horn snail Anisus vorticulus
  • Narrow-mouthed whorl snail Vertigo angustior
  • Round-mouthed whorl snail Vertigo genesii
  • Sandbowl snail Catinella arenaria
  • Shining pond snail Segmentina nitida 

Other invertebrates

  • Depressed river mussel Pseudanodonta complanata
  • Freshwater pea mussel Pisidium tenuilineatum
  • Freshwater pearl mussel Margaritifera margaritifera
  • Ivell's sea anemone (endemic and probably extinct)
  • Medicinal leech Hirudo medicinalis
  • Starlet sea anemone Nematostella vectensis

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