North American birds in decline

Listen 49:00
A western meadowlark in the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge in Commerce City, Colo. According to a study released on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019, North America’s skies are lonelier and quieter as nearly 3 billion fewer wild birds soar in the air than in 1970. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)

A western meadowlark in the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge in Commerce City, Colo. According to a study released on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019, North America’s skies are lonelier and quieter as nearly 3 billion fewer wild birds soar in the air than in 1970. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)

Guests: Jason Weckstein, Robert Curry

Bird populations in North America are declining at alarming rates. A new study in Science reports that bird numbers are down by 29% since 1970, that’s a loss of close to three billion birds. But while warblers, finches, and sparrows are being especially hard hit, other birds like raptors and waterfowl have actually made comebacks. This hour, we talk about bird populations and conservation. We’ll look at which species are threatened, what’s behind the declines, and what individuals can do to support our avian friends – like making bird-friendly backyards and participating in bird counts.  Our guests are JASON WECKSTEIN, associate curator of ornithology at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University and ROBERT CURRY, professor of biology at Villanova University.

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