Vulnerable Birds in Hillsborough County
Highly and moderately vulnerable birds may lose more than half of their current range—the geographic area where they live—as they are forced to search for suitable habitat and climate conditions elsewhere.
Below, find out which of the birds that nest or spend the winter in your area are most vulnerable across their entire range. Some birds may lose range outside of your state, making the protection of their current habitat in your area even more important.
How Will the Red-headed Woodpecker's Range Be Affected in Hillsborough County?
Rising temperatures and shifting weather patterns affect birds’ ability to find food and reproduce, which over time impacts local populations, and ultimately continent-wide populations, too. Some species may even go extinct in your state if they cannot find the resources they need to survive and raise their young.
Select a warming scenario to see how this species’ range will change under increased global temperatures.
Reducing warming makes many types of birds found in Hillsborough County less vulnerable.
Without immediate, urgent action to reduce carbon emissions, global temperatures could rise by 3.0°C in the coming decades, endangering birds in your area. The threat is drastically reduced if we curb greenhouse gases and we limit warming to 1.5°C, giving the same birds a chance to not only survive but thrive.
Click the three different warming scenarios to explore how increased warming puts more species in Hillsborough county at risk.
Florida's Birds and Habitats
Florida’s 1,350-mile coastline is buffered by natural infrastructure, including beaches, mangroves, salt marshes, and coral reefs. Hundreds of bird species make year-round homes in diverse habitats from cypress sloughs to tropical hardwood hammocks. The resident population swells with the influx of winter arrivals, such as Wood Thrushes, which use Florida as a launching pad for southern destinations. Roseate Spoonbills, among the state’s most recognizable birds, are popular sightings across the Florida Everglades and beyond.
Climate Policy in Florida
(Data: U.S. EIA)
While Florida has the third-best physical and geographic conditions in the country for solar, its policies mean the state is only 18th for installed solar capacity. Recent commitments, like that from Florida Power & Light Company to add 30 million more solar panels by 2030, could help the state close this gap. Cities in Florida such as Orlando, St. Petersburg, and Tallahassee have already committed to running 100 percent on renewable energy within the coming decades, and the state’s strong net-metering policies provide opportunity for homeowners and co-ops to engage in rooftop solar. With support from Audubon and others, Miami-Dade County recently approved the budget for replacement of over 30 of its public transit buses with electric vehicles.
Climate Threats Facing Birds and People in Hillsborough County
Hotter summer temperatures may cause rapid dry-downs of standing water in south Florida, increasing the likelihood of harmful algal blooms like red tides. More frequent, out-of-season rain events and king tides cause localized flooding. Increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events like hurricanes can damage buildings, farms, and natural areas. As sea levels continue to rise, millions of people, in South Florida especially, are at risk of losing their homes and businesses, while coastal nesting sites and foraging habitat will be rendered unusable to species.
The same climate change-driven threats that put birds at risk harm people, too. Hover over or tap an area on the map to see specific threats that will affect that area as warming increases.