Conservation

Climate Change

Greater Yellowlegs. Photo: David Alan Harvey/National Geographic Creative

Climate change threatens the birds we see every day.

Our warming world poses profound challenges to conservation. The effects of climate change are already apparent—from habitat loss to devastating breaks in the delicate links that connect birds, migration, and food sources. 

The Threat

Audubon’s Birds & Climate Change Report, published in September 2014, confirmed that climate change is the single greatest threat to North American birds. Seven years in the making, the report warns that 314 North American bird species could lose more than half of their current ranges by 2080 due to rising temperatures. (For more on the methodology, and links to peer-reviewed articles published out of this research, visit the FAQ page on the climate science section of this site.)

For those of us who care deeply about birds, from the Wood Thrush in eastern forests to the Burrowing Owl in western grasslands, this is a warning call that demands urgent action.

Audubon’s Solution

The situation is indeed dire—more than half of bird species on the continent are at risk—but there are reasons for hope. By identifying which birds are most sensitive to climate change and where those changes are most likely to occur, this research provides a roadmap for future conservation and advocacy efforts.

Audubon’s Climate Initiative, the organizational response to this threat, taps into its members’ love and commitment for birds to build population resilience and demand solutions to slow the pace of warming. Audubon is encouraging its members to take steps to address the climate change threat in their backyards, in their communities, in the Important Bird Areas (IBAs) near their homes, and in the state houses.

That requires a diverse network of climate activists with a shared value—a love and appreciation of birds. Take a look at how Audubon’s network of chapters, centers, state offices and individual activists is helping birds adapt and pushing for solutions on behalf of birds.

 

Explore the Climate Report

Browse our in-depth study's interactive range maps that forecast how the ranges of our 314 most at-risk species will contract, expand or shift under climate change conditions 

Climate News

30 Herons Found Dead at Alberta Mining Site
Climate

30 Herons Found Dead at Alberta Mining Site

An investigation into the birds’ deaths may inform the MBTA update, says U.S. Fish and Wildlife.

Bill Nye the Climate Guy
Climate

Bill Nye the Climate Guy

His newest project, an upcoming documentary, takes on the task of explaining climate change to the masses and spurring them into action.

EPA Finalizes Rule to Dramatically Reduce Carbon Pollution
Climate

EPA Finalizes Rule to Dramatically Reduce Carbon Pollution

The Clean Power Plan represents a substantive step forward to address climate change.

Art Is for the Birds
Climate

Art Is for the Birds

An Arizona educator shares how creativity can connect people, birds, and conservation.

Audubon California Helps Improve Apple’s Solar Farm
Climate

Audubon California Helps Improve Apple’s Solar Farm

Sure, green energy is great—but not when it’s plopped in the middle of pristine habitat.

Read Our Climate Change Special Issue

Audubon devoted an entire issue to the challenges birds face in a warming world. 

Featured projects

Birds & Climate Report

Birds & Climate Report

Shrinking and shifting ranges could imperil nearly half of U.S. birds within this century

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Saltmarsh

Saltmarsh

Helping imperiled saltmarsh birds adapt to sea-level rise threatening coastal marshes in the Chesapeake Bay

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