Species at risk by type

A list of species at risk for the selected Ontario region.


  • henslows-sparrow

    Henslow's Sparrow (Ammodramus henslowii)

    Status: endangered

    The Henslow's Sparrow is a short-distance migrant, travelling only as far as the southern United States, primarily from Texas to Georgia.

  • golden-eagle

    Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos)

    Status: endangered

    The Golden Eagle has a wingspan of just over two metres and can weigh as much as six kilograms!

  • red-knot-rufa-subspecies

    Red Knot rufa subspecies (Calidris canutus rufa)

    Status: endangered

    This bird migrates from the central Canadian Arctic to southern South America, a distance of nearly 15,000 kilometres.

  • piping-plover

    Piping Plover (Charadrius melodus)

    Status: endangered

    Within an hour of hatching and drying off, chicks are able to find their own food.

  • northern-bobwhite

    Northern Bobwhite (Colinus virginianus)

    Status: endangered

    The male and female select the location for the nest and build it together. Both parents share the tasks of incubating eggs and caring for the young, however, it is not uncommon for one of the parents to incubate the first clutch once complete (often the male) while the other leaves to take another mate and start another clutch.

  • kirtlands-warbler

    Kirtland's Warbler (Dendroica kirtlandii)

    Status: endangered

    Kirtland's Warbler is one of only a few warblers that have the distinctive habit of regularly pumping its tail up and down.

  • acadian-flycatcher

    Acadian Flycatcher (Empidonax virescens)

    Status: endangered

    The Acadian Flycatcher only spends about four months of the year in Canada. The rest of the time, it is migrating or wintering in the tropical forests of Central America and northern South America.

  • yellow-breasted-chat

    Yellow-breasted Chat (Icteria virens)

    Status: endangered

    The Yellow-breasted Chat's song consists of a weird assortment of clicks, whistles ands even chuckles.

  • loggerhead-shrike

    Loggerhead Shrike (Lanius ludovicianus)

    Status: endangered

    Shrikes are sometimes called butcher bird because they impale their prey on thorns, barbed wire or sharp twigs.

  • prothonotary-warbler

    Prothonotary Warbler (Protonotaria citrea)

    Status: endangered

    The Prothonotary Warbler was named after legal clerks in the Roman Catholic Church, known as prothonotaries, who sometimes wear a golden hood and a blue cape.

  • king-rail

    King Rail (Rallus elegans)

    Status: endangered

    During courtship, males present crayfish or small crabs to females in their bill.

  • barn-owl

    Barn Owl (Tyto alba)

    Status: endangered

    These birds hunt in the dark and have keen hearing - so keen they can capture prey even in total darkness.

  • eskimo-curlew

    Eskimo Curlew (Numenius borealis)

    Status: extirpated

    The Eskimo Curlew is considered to be one of the world's most endangered birds and may already be extinct.

  • greater-prairie-chicken

    Greater Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus cupido)

    Status: extirpated

    The Greater Prairie-Chicken once numbered in the millions in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Ontario, but disappeared from most of its Canadian range by the mid-20th century.

  • grasshopper-sparrow

    Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum)

    Status: special concern

  • short-eared-owl

    Short-eared Owl (Asio flammeus)

    Status: special concern

    Short-eared Owls are nomadic, meaning that individuals wander over large distances, usually settling in areas where prey densities are high.

  • black-tern

    Black Tern (Chlidonias niger)

    Status: special concern

    The Black Tern is very social. It breeds in loose colonies and usually forages, roosts and migrates in flocks of a few to more than 100 birds, occasionally up to tens of thousands.

  • common-nighthawk

    Common Nighthawk (Chordeiles minor)

    Status: special concern

    These birds have a specialized reflective structure in their eyes that improves their vision in low-light conditions, helping them find the flying insects they feed on at dawn and dusk.

  • olive-sided-flycatcher

    Olive-sided Flycatcher (Contopus cooperi)

    Status: special concern

    This bird's loud and distinct quick, three beers song can be heard from up to a kilometre away.

  • eastern-wood-pewee

    Eastern Wood-Pewee (Contopus virens)

    Status: special concern

  • yellow-rail

    Yellow Rail (Coturnicops noveboracensis)

    Status: special concern

    In the breeding season, males can be heard almost always at night giving their distinct clicking sounds tic-tic, tic-tic-tic, which sound like two stones being banged together. Birdwatchers will use pebbles to imitate the call and attract rails out to the edge of the reeds where they can be briefly observed.

  • peregrine-falcon

    Peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus)

    Status: special concern

    The peregrine falcon is one of the world's fastest animals, and has been clocked diving for prey at speeds of 160 km an hour.

  • bald-eagle

    Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)

    Status: special concern

    The raspy scream of the bald eagle often heard on movies and TV is actually from a red-tailed hawk. This bird actually gives a sort of watery, gurgling trill that doesn't sound like it suits the bird.

  • wood-thrush

    Wood Thrush (Hylocichla mustelina)

    Status: special concern

  • red-headed-woodpecker

    Red-headed Woodpecker (Melanerpes erythrocephalus)

    Status: special concern

    In addition to a bill, woodpeckers have special anatomical features to help them dig holes in wood and find insects. A covering of feathers over the nostrils keeps out pieces of wood and wood powder. A long, barbed tongue searches crevices and cracks for food. And the bird's salivary glands produce a glue-like substance that coats the tongue and, along with the barbs, helps it capture insects.

  • red-necked-phalarope

    Red-necked Phalarope (Phalaropus labatus)

    Status: special concern

  • horned-grebe

    Horned Grebe (Podiceps auritus)

    Status: special concern

    Chicks can swim and dive as soon as they hatch, but usually spend most of their first week or so of life on their parents' backs, nestled between the parents' wings and riding along while the parents swim.

  • golden-winged-warbler

    Golden-winged Warbler (Vermivora chrysoptera)

    Status: special concern

    Golden-winged Warblers tend to nest in loose groups or colonies that contain up to ten pairs of breeding birds

  • canada-warbler

    Canada Warbler (Wilsonia canadensis)

    Status: special concern

    This warbler is one of the last migratory songbird species to return to Canada in the spring and one of the first to leave at the end of summer.

  • whip-poor-will

    Eastern Whip-poor-will (Antrostomas vociferus)

    Status: threatened

    Chicks seem to hatch near full moons, giving parents more light for foraging so they can supply the extra energy demands of their rapidly-growing brood.

  • chimney-swift

    Chimney Swift (Chaetura pelagica)

    Status: threatened

    These birds breed and roost in chimneys as well as other manmade structures, including air vents, old open wells, outhouses, abandoned cisterns and lighthouses.

  • cerulean-warbler

    Cerulean Warbler (Dendroica cerulea)

    Status: threatened

    Since this warbler is a bird of the tree tops, it is often best identified from below. Birdwatchers will recognize adult males by the thin dark band that crosses the upper part of the predominantly white breast.

  • bobolink

    Bobolink (Dolichonyx oryzivorus)

    Status: threatened

    These birds migrate from Ontario to Argentina - one of the longest migrations of any North American songbird.

  • barn-swallow

    Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)

    Status: threatened

    Barn Swallows make the long flight to Central and South America each fall, returning to southern Canada - including Ontario - each spring.

  • least-bittern

    Least Bittern (Ixobrychus exilis)

    Status: threatened

    The Least Bittern is more likely to be heard than seen in its dense marsh habitat. The typical call given by males is a hollow, quiet coo-coo-coo. When alarmed, they can give a harsh kek-kek-kek call. They are most vocal in early morning and evening, but could potentially call anytime during the day or night.

  • louisiana-waterthrush

    Louisiana Waterthrush (Parkesia motacilla)

    Status: threatened

    The Louisiana Waterthrush is among the earliest long-distance migrating birds to arrive back to Canada in the spring, typically arriving by mid-April.

  • american-white-pelican

    American White Pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos)

    Status: threatened

    These birds can cooperate in small groups to herd ?sh into shallow areas where they can be easily caught

  • bank-swallow

    Bank Swallow (Riparia riparia)

    Status: threatened

    At Long Point, Ontario, inner bay cattail marshes are used as night-time roosting sites by many bank swallows as they fly south for the winter.

  • eastern-meadowlark

    Eastern Meadowlark (Sturnella magna)

    Status: threatened

    The Eastern Meadowlark is not actually a lark, but a member of the same family as blackbirds and orioles.

Updated: January 30, 2018