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Environment & Climate Change

Once nearly extinct, Kirtland's warbler coming off endangered list

A male Kirtland's Warbler in a jack pine forest in Michigan, USA.
Joel Trick
/
USFWS

The Kirtland's warbler is being removed from the federal endangered species list after a successful battle to save it from extinction.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Tuesday that the yellow-bellied songbird has recovered but will continue to rely on habitat preservation measures for long-term survival.

It nests in the young jack pines of northern Michigan, Wisconsin and Ontario that must be logged and replanted on a regular basis to mimic wildfires that historically regenerated the forests.

Efforts also will continue to keep away brown-headed cowbirds that invade warbler nests.

After falling to 167 pairs in 1987, the population is now about 2,300 pairs.

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