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Birds as Indicators of Riparian Vegetation Condition in the Western U.S.

Riparian Dependent Species

These are species that place 60%-90% of their nests in riparian vegetation or for which 60%-90% of their abundance occurs in riparian vegetation during the breeding season. Riparian dependents might still occur in an area if riparian vegetation were seriously degraded but their populations would be greatly reduced and they might not persist in the long-term. Some species may be classified as dependents in one geographic area but not another.

Dependent Species2
Conservation Action Required in Geographic Region3
Vegetation Layer(s) Used4
Northern Rockies
Great Basin
Arid S. West
Co. Plat./S. Rockies
American Goldfinch
Bank Swallow
Bewick's Wren
Black-billed Cuckoo
Black-capped Chickadee
Black-chinned Hummingbird
Black-headed Grosbeak
Blue Grosbeak
Blue-throated Hummingbird
Bronzed Cowbird
Bullock's Oriole
Calliope Hummingbird
Cooper's Hawk
Cordilleran Flycatcher
Eastern Kingbird
Elf Owl
Ferruginous Pygmy-owl
Fox Sparrow
Gray Catbird
Harris' Hawk
Hooded Oriole
House Wren
Indigo Bunting
Lazuli Bunting
Lesser Goldfinch
Lewis' Woodpecker
MacGillivray's Warbler
Mississippi Kite
Northern Goshawk
Painted Redstart
Red-eyed Vireo
Red-faced Warbler
Red-headed Woodpecker
Red-naped Sapsucker
Swainson's Hawk
Swainson's Thrush
Tree Swallow
Warbling Vireo
Western Wood-pewee
White-eared Hummingbird
Zone-tailed Hawk

2Species is considered to be Dependent (see definitions) in at least one geographic region (see map).
3The Western Working Group of Partners in Flight determined that conservation action is needed now for the species in the geographic region(s) indicated.
4The vegetation layer(s) used most by the species. The species is most useful as an indicator of the ecological condition of the layer(s) used.
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