A comprehensive, detailed, illustrated history of Minnesota's breeding birds - the first in nearly a century.
The first comprehensive and in-depth assessment of Minnesota's breeding birds in nearly a century, The Breeding Birds of Minnesota offers an unprecedented, extraordinarily detailed, finely illustrated account of 250 of those birds, including their historical and present breeding distribution, habitat, population abundance, and prospects for the future.
Unique among North American states, Minnesota sits squarely at the convergence of four major ecological regions, or biomes: aspen parklands, prairie grasslands, deciduous forest, and boreal forest. Consequently, the state hosts remarkably diverse avifauna. The Breeding Birds of Minnesota, the first comprehensive and in-depth assessment of Minnesota's breeding birds in nearly a century, offers an unprecedented, extraordinarily detailed, finely illustrated account of 250 of those birds, including their historical and present breeding distribution, habitat, population abundance, and prospects for the future.
For each species, The Breeding Birds of Minnesota gives a brief life history, providing Minnesota seasonal status, migration, foods consumed, nest structure, and name origin; a summary of identification hints, primary vocalizations, and specific features of distribution or behavior; and descriptions of breeding habitat, population abundance and trend, and conservation status and threats. The heart of each account focuses on the species' statewide distribution and abundance, beginning with a wealth of historical information from ornithological records dating from the 1800s to the early twenty-first century. An assessment of the species' current status draws on data collected by hundreds of participants over the course of five breeding seasons, from 2009 through 2013, which was published online in 2017 in the first Minnesota Breeding Bird Atlas.
Along with permanent and complete documentation of Minnesota's breeding birds from years past to present, this volume also identifies critical issues bird populations - and those who would protect them - will confront in coming years, including predictions of how each species will respond to climate change. Reference to T. S. Roberts's foundational two-volume Birds of Minnesota (1936) also reveals the remarkable recovery of birds once consigned to extinction in the state (such as the American White Pelican, Sandhill Crane, and Common Raven) and the serious decline of others, like the Black Tern and Eastern Meadowlark.
In The Breeding Birds of Minnesota, three of Minnesota's premier ornithologists present an authoritative history of the state's avifauna, from waterfowl and waterbirds to flycatchers, thrushes, sparrows, and warblers.