World Facts

20 Countries With The Most Threatened Bird Species

According to IUCN Data from 2015, these countries possess the most species of birds that are significantly threatened.

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) publishes the IUCN Red List every 5-10 years that assesses the status of the world's biological species. Since 1964, it has evaluated the survival chances of almost every fauna and flora on earth with the help of individual countries and regions. IUCN lists species into seven primary groups based on a set of specific criteria. The species that have not yet been designated any specific group is categorized as not evaluated (NE), and data deficient (DD).

The Fate of the World's Birds Species

Bird Conservation is a branch of study in conservation biology that keeps a check on bird survival all over the planet. Since early recorded history, about a hundred bird species have died out followed by about 1800 more species after early Polynesians migrated to the South Pacific islands. Currently, an assessment by the Worldwatch Institute has stated that in the next century, about 1200 more bird species will go extinct. Human habitat development has increased bird habitat loss and stands as the major cause of bird extinction. Oil spills, overhunting, pesticide poisoning, and the introduction of non-native species like pet cats and dogs, also figure into bird deaths. According to IUCN Data from 2015, these countries possess the most species of birds that are significantly threatened: Brazil ranks first on the list as having 165 threatened bird species. The orange-bellied antwren, pernambuco foliage-gleaner, alagoas antwren, and Stresemann's bristlefront are some of the threatened birds of Brazil. Habitat loss and human activities are causing bird extinction in the Brazilian forests . Indon Indonesia comes in second with 131 threatened bird species. Javan hawk-eagle, helmeted hornbill, silvery woodpigeon, yellow-crested cockatoo, scarlet-breasted lorikeet, and Javan green magpie are some of Indonesia’s endangered birds. The bird trade and habitat loss are two big reasons why bird species are declining in population. Peru comes in at third with 120 threatened bird species. Sira curassow, white-winged guan, junin grebe, waved albatross, and white-bellied cinclodes are all endemic and critically endangered. Hunting and habitat destruction are two reasons for the bird population decline in Peru. Colombia has about 119 threatened bird species. A large number of endemic species of this country like the blue-bearded helmetcrest and the Santa Marta wren also face extinction. Deforestation due to illicit crop cultivation plus cattle grazing has deprived many bird species their native habitats. Ecuador has about 98 threatened bird species. The Galapagos petrel, black-breasted puffleg, turquoise-throated puffleg, esmeraldas woodstar, and Galapagos penguin are all critically endangered endemic species of the region. Oil and gas development are threatening the diverse bird species of Ecuador. The Philippines has about 89 threatened bird species. Writhed hornbill, Philippine fairy-bluebird, palawan blue-flycatcher, mountain shrike, and melodious babbler are all threatened and endemic bird species. Habitat destruction, hunting, and the pet trade are all threats that have adversely affected bird survival in the Philippines. China has about 89 threatened bird species. Some of these threatened birds are the blue-crowned laughingthrush, Chinese crested tern, spoon-billed sandpiper and rufous-backed bunting. Land reclamation and habitat loss all contribute to the decline of the bird populations in China. India's number of threatened birds have reached to about 84 species. Some of these birds belong to the critically endangered category like forest owlet, great Indian bustard, Bengal florican, lesser florican, Jerdon’s courser, and vultures. Government apathy, habitat destruction, and hunting all contribute to the birds' sad plight. The United States has its own bird problems with about 77 species enlisted in the Red List of IUCN under the threatened categories. Among these birds are the short-tailed albatross, Bermuda petrel, Newell's shearwater, laysan duck, and California condor, some of which are critically endangered. Air and water pollution, plus habitat loss are contributing to bird species population decline in the US today. New Zealand is on the list with 67 threatened bird species. The tīeke, kākāpō, little-spotted kiwi and black robin have all been trans-located to small uninhabited islands with success. Farming, pollution, weeds, pests, and hunting all threaten the bird species of New Zealand. Mexico has about 61 threatened bird species. The horned guan, Townsend's shearwater, ashy storm-petrel, Guadalupe storm-petrel, whooping crane, Eskimo curlew, and marbled murrelet are all facing threats to their survival. Avian diseases, hunting, predation, and habitat destruction all contribute to the drastic decline of the avian species of Mexico. Bolivia harbors about 55 threatened bird species. Among them are the critically endangered blue-throated macaw and royal cinclodes. Endangered are the Bolivian spinetail, ash-breasted tit-tyrant, and Cochabamba mountain-finch. Human activities such as bird poaching, crop cultivation, hunting, seasonal burning, logging, cattle grazing, water irrigation, and draining of wetlands have added to the problem. Russia has its unique set of threatened birds which number 54 species. Examples are the white-eye, ashy minivet, mandarin duck, and hazelhen, all of whom need special protection. Some of the factors that influence the decline of bird population in Russia are the extreme weather conditions, oil slicks, pollution, avian influenza, predation, and habitat degradation. Thailand is also on the list with about 51 threatened bird species. Among them are the giant ibis, black-faced spoonbill, black-necked stork, white-winged duck, and chestnut-necklaced partridge. Eroded habitats, pesticides, and land conversion all contribute to the sad plight of the avian community in Thailand. Malaysia continues its conservation efforts by helping the 50 or so threatened bird species in its territory. Critically endangered are the White-shouldered ibis and the Christmas Island frigatebird. Endangered are the masked finfoot, storm's stork, and the yellow-breasted bunting. Overexploitation, bird trade, and habitat degradation are the main causes of the problem. Argentina faces conservation issues with its 50 threatened bird species. Among the critically threatened bird species are the hooded grebe, Junin grebe, black-breasted puffleg, and turquoise-throated puffleg. Pollution, sprawling roads, and intensive farming activities are observed as factors responsible for declining bird population in the country. Australia has about 50 bird species that are on the IUCN Red List. Among these birds are the orange-bellied parrot, Coxen's fig-parrot, and plains-wanderer. Habitat degradation, predation, and climate change all are responsible for the bird decline in Australia. Myanmar is on the IUCN Red List with about 48 bird species. Among them are the critically endangered Gurney's pitta, white-rumped vulture, and pink-headed duck. Tanzania has about 47 threatened bird species. The Madagascar pond heron, sooty falcon, and Amani sunbird are among these bird species. Habitat degradation, bird trade, invasive species predation, and hunting are contributing to the problem. Vietnam is also on the IUCN Red List with about 46 threatened bird species. The Baer's pochard, Edwards's pheasant, Bengal florican, and giant ibis are listed as critically endangered. Habitat degradation, logging, human immigration, and urban expansion have all affected bird habitats.

The Need to Conserve

Bird experts, conservation professionals, and scientists have all worked together to create measures that would help in the protection of the world's bird species. Captive breeding and release into the wild, translocation of threatened species, and habitat protection are some of these techniques. However arduous the task faced, conservationists appear to be determined to save the avifauna of the world. Logging companies, landowners, and businesses have become major obstacles to bird conservation worldwide. Ultimately, governments have to make a difference by passing legislation that would improve bird survival.

20 Countries With The Most Threatened Bird Species

RankCountry Number of Threatened Bird Species
1Brazil 165
2Indonesia 131
3Peru 120
4Colombia 119
5Ecuador 98
6Philippines 89
7China 89
8India 84
9United States 77
10New Zealand 67
11Mexico 61
12Bolivia 55
13Russia 54
14Thailand 51
15Malaysia 50
16Argentina 50
17Australia 50
18Myanmar 48
19Tanzania 47
20Vietnam 46

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