SCIENTIFIC NAME:Oceanodroma castro POPULATION: Global population: 150,000 individuals; Hawaiian population: approximately 240 pairs TREND: Decreasing HABITAT: Nests on isolated islands; spends rest of time at sea.
The dainty Band-rumped Storm-Petrel, known as the ‘Ake‘ake in Hawai’i, is named for the white band across the top of its broad, squared-tipped tail. Its genus name, Oceanodroma, derives from the ancient Greek words for “ocean” and “runner,” probably derived from the bird’s habit of paddling with its feet while it flies low over the water.
A full-grown Band-rumped Storm-Petrel weighs only about one-and-a-half ounces — about the same as a golf ball. It’s similar in size to an American Robin.
Creating nature reserves is one of the most important ways to save rare birds likeBlue-billed Curassowand benefit migratory birds likeCerulean Warbler—along with an abundance of other biodiversity.
Rio Canande Reserve, managed protects more than 6,100 acres of forest in the highly threatened Chocó region of northwestern Ecuador. About 25 percent of the species found in this region are found nowhere else on Earth, includingLong-wattled Umbrellabird(shown); many declining species, likeScarlet-breasted Dacnis, also find refuge here.
SCIENTIFIC NAME:Eulidia yarrellii POPULATION: 350-500 individuals IUCN STATUS: Endangered TREND: Decreasing HABITAT: Native scrub in Chilean desert river valleys.
The beautiful Chilean Woodstar is a tiny hummingbird, only the size of a large moth. At around 3 inches long, it’s the smallest bird in Chile. The species has a very small distribution, too, and is as endangered as its close relative, theEsmeraldas Woodstarof Ecuador.
Habitat lossis the key factor behind the species’ decline from at least 1,500 birds in 2003 to roughly 400 birds in 2012 — a loss of more than 80 percent.
SCIENTIFIC NAME:Icterus graduacauda POPULATION: Fewer than 5,000 in U.S., but most of range is in Mexico. TREND: Decreasing HABITAT: Riparian and live-oak woods.
Formerly known as the Black-headed Oriole, the flashy but furtive Audubon’s Oriole is one of North America’s two yellow-and-black orioles. (The other is Scott’s Oriole, also found in the U.S. Southwest and Mexico.) Audubon’s Oriole, like the Green Jay, is a species sought after by birders visiting Texas’ Lower Rio Grande Valley.
Although as brightly colored as a Green Jay orPainted Bunting, this large oriole can be a challenge to spot. Bright yellow is often difficult to distinguish amid green foliage, and unlike the more familiarBaltimore Oriole, Audubon’s Oriole tends to remain deep under cover, where it is more often heard than seen.