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American Bird Report

September 22, 2014

Even common birds are showing declines in this year’s State of the Birds report.



Declining bird populations. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

Birds are in trouble across North America. This according to the State of the Birds 2014 report, issued by the US Department of Interior. It found declines not only among already threatened migratory birds like the warblers and hummingbirds, but even among fairly common species, like bobwhites and pintail ducks. Ornithologist Peter Marra, of the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center, says habitat loss, cats, and building collisions are big factors. But he says there’s a lot we can do to help.

PETER MARRA (Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center):

It starts in your own backyard, really. So, reducing pesticides, making sure you’re not letting you’re cat outside, minimizing the impact birds have with your house, so making your windows and the other parts of your house bird friendly. Are all things that you can do, that you can spread throughout your community, and collectively it can all make a difference to save our nation’s birds.


I’m Bob Hirshon, for AAAS, the science society.