Maine’s Important Bird Area (IBA) program is part of a global effort to identify areas that are most critical for long-term bird conservation. IBAs must meet a set of criteria developed by a Technical Committee of bird experts. The criteria are focused primarily on large concentrations of birds, species of conservation concern, and species diversity. Maine has so far identified 22 IBAs, primarily along the coast and around wetlands (pdf).
We Need Your Help!
We are currently seeking nominations for our second round of IBA identification, and need your help. You can contribute to the IBA program by:
- Visiting a site on the list of candidate IBA sites created by the IBA technical committee. You can also view the highest priority sites where information is needed on a Google map.
- Providing a checklist from one or more site visits directly to Maine Audubon (e-mail our Conservation team) or submit observations via ebird. Site visits and checklists within the past five years are useful for IBA nomination.
- Nominating a new site. If you know of other areas that are good sites for any of the species of conservation concern, let our team know. Guidelines (pdf) that outline the criteria should be followed, and bird information that supports the nomination can be e-mailed to Susan or submitted via ebird.
Thank you in advance for any help you can offer this next phase of IBA identification in Maine!
An IBA is an area that provides important habitat for one or more species of breeding, wintering, or migrating birds.
- Generally supports birds of conservation concern (including threatened
and endangered species)
- Large concentrations of birds
- Birds associated with unique or exceptional habitat
- High historic research value for bird conservation
- May be either protected or unprotected
- May be publicly or privately held
- IBA Size
- IBAs may be of any size, but are usually discrete and distinguishable in character, habitat, or ornithological importance from surrounding areas.
- Where possible, IBAs should be large enough to supply all or most of the needs of birds during the season in which the site is important.
- Area boundaries may be either natural (e.g., rivers, ridges, islands, watersheds) or human-made (e.g., roads, property boundaries).