Birds of Conservation Concern
In 2019 a report appeared in the journal Science which confirmed what many birders already know; that many species of birds have been experiencing population declines in recent years. Based on an analysis of observations collected by breeding bird surveys, the Christmas bird count among other data sources, scientists have documented that we have lost more than a quarter of our bird life since 1970. That's almost 3 billion birds.
Various factors such as, habitat loss, habitat degradation, climate change, use of pesticides, collisions with buildings and other structures, and predation by cats have been identified as contributors to population declines. Several organizations and governments, including the National Audubon Society, American Bird Conservancy, Partners in Flight, and the US Fish and Wildlife Service, have generated Watch Lists of those birds that are most vulnerable to declines and possible extinction. The goal of these groups is to use the risk assessment of birds on Watch Lists to foster and develop sound conservation and management strategies designed to help in the recovery of declining populations.
The purpose of this page of the EAS website is to draw attention to the birds of highest conservation concern that occur in our tristate area. Some of these species are currently on one or more of the Watch Lists, while others are highlighted due to their recent population declines. Profiles of birds of conservation concern that are summer, winter, or year round residents, or that migrate through our area in spring and fall are given below (Click on any profile).