Status of Birds In Canada

Rough-legged Hawk by Pat Bumstead

A new Status of Birds in Canada section has been added to Environment Canada’s web site. It identifies the overall status of each species, describes population changes, discusses some of their conservation needs and provides a mechanism to track the success of ongoing and proposed conservation actions for these species.

The first phase of the site, which has just been launched, reports on a selection of more than 100 landbirds. These landbirds are either of conservation concern or those for which our stewardship responsibility is high, because Canada is home to a large portion of their population. Future iterations are planned to include all of Canada’s birds.

The Web site presents individual species accounts based on an assessment of the available population data from a variety of bird monitoring programs. It identifies the overall status of each species, describes population changes, discusses some of their conservation needs and provides a mechanism to track the success of ongoing and proposed conservation actions for these species. Although results from individual monitoring programs have been presented previously, the Status of Birds in Canada Web site is the first time that data from all these different sources has been pulled together and presented.

Bird monitoring programs provide the data that allow biologists to measure changes in their populations. There are a wide variety of monitoring programs in Canada: some are co-ordinated by government, others by conservation and environmental organizations. By synthesizing information from these various surveys, biologists are able to assess the status and changes in each species. It also allows us to identify those species for which our information is inadequate, so that we can work towards filling these gaps in knowledge.

The landbird monitoring programs that provide data for the Status of Birds in Canada Web site rely in large part on the participation of volunteers who are highly-skilled in the identification of birds. Thousands of these volunteers contribute their time and expertise to the Breeding Bird Survey, the Christmas Bird Count, Breeding Bird Atlases, and many other bird monitoring programs. Their contribution to our knowledge of bird populations and to bird conservation has been enormous. We are extremely grateful to all these dedicated birders.

Source: Environment Canada

The Status of Birds In Canada is a searchable website using common names, scientific names or an alphabetical list. Some examples:

Baird’s Sparrow

Rough-legged Hawk

Posted by Pat Bumstead