Hooded Warbler. Ps50ace/iStock

Audubon's Priority Birds 2021

We work where we're needed most.

The sustained decline of North American bird populations is a conservation crisis. Since 1970 we've lost nearly three billion birds. Grassland birds are most affected, and more than 60 percent of grassland habitat and 159 million priority birds are simply gone, the greatest total loss of priority birds for any habitat type. Coastal birds have declined 48 percent, and birds that depend on rivers, wetlands, and those that migrate through towns and cities in spring and fall are also steadily declining.

Population losses at this scale require an unprecedented response. We are committed to protecting birds and the places they need. Our priority birds are species of conservation need representing the range of habitats and communities we work in. Keep reading to learn what the loss of nearly three billion birds means for us and the viability of our ecosystem, and what Audubon is doing to reverse these declines.

Download Audubon's Priority Birds 2021

Priority Birds in the News


New Science Reveals the Big Impact Stewardship Has on Coastal Birds

Birds like terns and plovers that are vulnerable to human disturbance need active stewardship to thrive.

North America Has Lost More Than 1 in 4 Birds in Last 50 Years, New Study Says

For the first time, researchers have estimated the volume of total avian loss in the Western Hemisphere—and it’s not just threatened species that are declining. Many backyard favorites are also losing ground.
Hummingbirds at Home

Hummingbirds Are at Home When We Plant Native Plants

A new study on Audubon’s Hummingbirds at Home program shows the importance of community science and native plants.

The Secret Lives of Black Rails, and the Scientists Who Seek Them

Deep in Louisiana marshes, the Black Rail is a master of stealth. Now a tactical team is shining a light on the species, with hopes to demystify its behavior and win it protections.
Yellow-billed Cuckoo. Mary Miguez/Audubon Photography Awards
Western Water News

Over 150,000 Acres of Critical Habitat Designated for the Western Yellow-billed Cuckoo in Arizona

How Audubon made a difference for one of the West's most imperiled birds.
Migratory Bird Initiative

How Scientists Learned About The Blackpoll Warbler's Epic Migration

Tiny, high-tech backpacks help us protect these songbirds throughout their full migratory cycle.