Willow Flycatcher. Photo: Mick Thompson/Eastside Audubon

How Climate Change Will Affect Birds in Indiana

Vulnerable Birds in Indiana

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.


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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.

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How will the Willow Flycatcher's range be affected in Indiana?

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 conditions 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 Indiana less vulnerable.

In order to hold warming steady, we must act now to reduce the amount of carbon released into the atmosphere and limit warming to 1.5 degrees. We must reduce our carbon emissions and also absorb what is produced through natural solutions like reforestation or with technology that removes carbon from the air.

Click the three different warming scenarios to explore how increased warming puts more species in Indiana at risk.

Indiana's Birds and Habitats

The restored wetlands of Goose Pond Fish and Wildlife Area are year-round hotspots for waterfowl and marsh birds. Grasslands at the Kankakee Sands complex in northwestern Indiana support one of the state’s largest populations of Henslow’s Sparrows. Lake Michigan’s shores provide great opportunities for viewing migrating shorebirds, waterbirds, and songbirds in spring and fall. Hoosier National Forest is a haven for neotropical migrants and nesting songbirds, including significant populations of Wood Thrushes and Red-headed Woodpeckers.

Climate Policy in Indiana

Electricity Generation Breakdown
5.1 % Wind
.5 % Biomass
.3 % Hydro
.3 % Solar
18.2 % Natural Gas
73.2 % Coal
Greenhouse Gas Emissions Targets
Renewable Portfolio Standard
BY 2025
Member of the US
Climate Alliance?

(Data: U.S. EIA)

One of Indiana’s largest gas and electric companies aims to replace coal plants with cheaper renewables and energy storage by 2028. In 2018, clean energy employment grew 4.7 percent, one of the fastest growth rates in the region.

Climate Threats Facing Birds and People in Indiana

Heavy precipitation and flooding along the Ohio River threaten navigation and waterfront communities. Increasing temperatures in Lake Michigan have reduced ice cover and degraded water quality, causing algal blooms that harm fish populations. In the coming decades, Indiana will likely experience rapid and uncertain Great Lakes water-level fluctuations, reduced agricultural yields, and heat waves.

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.