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Loggerhead Shrike endangered
Posted By INTELLIGENCER STAFF
March 6, 2010
Quinte Conservation is using the
Internet to raise awareness about species at risk in our area.
Each month the Quinte Conservation website will highlight a different
species at risk.
The featured species for March is the Loggerhead Shrike.
Quinte Conservation stewardship co-ordinator, Alana Bancroft, said The
Loggerhead Shrike is sometimes called the "butcher bird." It is a predatory
bird that kills and eats mostly insects, but will sometimes eat smaller
birds or mice. It often kills its prey by impaling it on twigs and thorns.
The Ministry of Natural Resources said a species at risk is any
naturally-occurring plant or animal in danger of extinction or of
disappearing from the province. Bancroft said species can become at risk due
to habitat loss, pollution, changing land use activities and the spread of
"Habitat loss due to intensive farming, reforestation and development has
been a major threat to the Loggerhead Shrike in our area," she said.
The Napanee Plain has been designated an Important Bird Area (IBA) due to
its significant share of an endangered bird population. In 2005, there were
only 11 breeding pairs of shrikes in this area. There are only about 40
breeding pairs in Ontario.
Bancroft said the Species at Risk Awareness Program is to let the public
know about the special and unique wildlife species that are vulnerable in
"Understanding species at risk in our watersheds allows us to assess the
direction of our efforts in order to improve our management practices for
healthy and diverse ecosystems," she said.
Information about each month's species at risk can be found at
www.quinteconservation.ca. Quinte Conservation is a community-based
environmental protection agency that serves 18 municipalities in the
watersheds of the Moira, Napanee and Salmon Rivers and Prince Edward County.