The Audubon Birds and Climate Change Report is a first-of-its-kind study that predicts how climate change could affect the ranges of 588 North American birds. A product of seven years of research, the report calls upon three decades of citizen-scientist observations from the Audubon Christmas Bird Count and the North American Breeding Bird Survey to define the ideal "climatic range" for each bird species—the range of temperatures, precipitation, and seasonal changes each needs to survive. Then, Audubon scientists mapped where each bird's ideal climate range might be found in the future as the climate changes.
The results are shocking: Nearly half of the bird species in the continental U.S. and Canada are seriously threatened by 2080, and without action, many are at risk of extinction. To view interactive future range maps for the 314 most at-risk species, visit audubon.org/climate.
On a local level, the data pinpoints 113 "climate-endangered" bird species that occur in Washington state that may lose 50% or more of their habitat by 2050, according to the projections.
Audubon's new science sends a clear message about the serious dangers birds face in a warming world. Protecting them will require both redoubling conservation efforts to safeguard critical habitat and curbing greenhouse gas emissions. To learn about ways you can help in your own community, take the Audubon pledge to help build a brighter future for the 314 birds at risk at audubon.org/climate.
- Audubon Birds and Climate Change Report
- Distler, T. et al. 2015. Stacked species distribution models and macroecological models provide congruent projections of avian species richness under climate change. The Journal of Biogeography.
- Schuetz, J. et al. 2015. Making spatial priorizations robust to climate change uncertainties: A case study with North American Birds. Ecological Applications. (Abstract)
- Audubon Tips for a Climate + Birds Conversation
- What You Can Do to Help Protect Birds
- Solar Power Opportunities in Washington
- Share your birds and climate story. Already people are noticing changes in the rhythms of bird life around them. Fewer birds, birds arriving early or late, new visitors from the south, common visitors becoming scarce all may be symptoms of our changing climate. Got a birds and climate story? Tell us what you are seeing!