Overview - Priority Birds & Habitats

The bird species that are conservation priorities of the Central Hardwoods Joint Venture (CHJV) largely result from assessments performed by the major bird initiatives under the auspices of the North American Bird Conservation Initiative. The CHJV also involves staff from partner agencies and organizations via technical committees such as Upland and Wetland Science Teams to set population objectives for each species at the scale of the Bird Conservation Region, develop methods to link the populations to the habitat types they are associated with, and quantify habitat objectives needed to restore the populations to desired levels.

Several hundred species of birds depend upon habitat in the Central Hardwoods Bird Conservation Region (CHBCR) during critical times of their life cycles. Many breed or over-winter here, while others stop during migration between breeding and wintering grounds. Some species are doing quite well, but populations of others are less stable or are more vulnerable to long-term declines.

Species in the greatest need of conservation attention typically have some combination of relatively small ranges, small population sizes, declining trends, and reliance on threatened or already degraded habitats. The CHJV focuses on these priority bird species. Species that have large percentages of their populations in a particular BCR also are considered priorities, but don’t necessarily warrant immediate conservation action if their populations are stable or increasing.