Why Birds?

When birds don’t have what they need, we don’t, either.

With big challenges clamoring for our collective attention—climate change chief among them—why should we care about birds? It’s simple: Birds need the same resources we do in order to survive and thrive. Birds need a healthy environment, the right food, clean air, and clean water. When birds don’t have what they need, we don’t, either.

Birds tell us what they need and warn us of impending danger, should we choose to listen.

We can track the movements and habits of birds to see where they’ve lived in the past and where they will likely move in the future. Birds also tell us where climate change is disrupting delicate ecosystems. And when that happens, people suffer too. Food and water become scarcer. Infectious diseases emerge. And natural sources for existing medicines and new pharmacological discoveries are lost.

Birds also show us when we’ve done something right.

The rapid resurgence of Bald Eagles, Peregrine Falcons, and Brown Pelicans after DDT was banned is a stark example of how birds can give us positive news after good deeds.

Birds are among the most common wildlife we encounter regularly.

From the Blue Jays quarreling at a suburban backyard feeder to the flash of a Scarlet Tanager off a wooded trail to the Rock Pigeons bobbing down a city street, birds are all around us. In 2022 alone, more than 96 million people in the U.S. participated in birdwatching, and more 42 million people traveled specifically to see birds. In our increasingly modern world, it’s worth preserving these fleeting and precious interactions with nature.

Audubon formed because of its members’ love for these beautiful feathered creatures and a desire to ensure that future generations could continue to enjoy birds in their natural habitats. And to this day—and into the future—we work tirelessly to make sure that the places birds, and we, need are protected for everyone’s sake.

Meet Three Birds That Represent Our Work