Loggerhead Shrike

loggerhead shrike, photo credit: Laurie J Snidow

Endangered Provincially and Nationally

Description

• Robin-sized bird with black bill hooked at tip
• Medium-grey crown and back; white throat and breast; racoon-like black face mask;  black tail with white outer feathers; black wings with bold white patch that flashes when in flight
• Prefers pastures and other grasslands with scattered low trees and shrubs
• Builds nests in small trees and hunts near spiny, multi-branched shrubs or barbed wire fencing to impale prey before eating

Range

• Though concentrated in southern Ontario, occasionally found within its former broad
range in northern Ontario

Threats

• Habitat loss and succession
• Toxins in prey
• Road mortality

Protection

• Provincially protected under the Endangered Species Act, 2007
• Federally protected under the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994

Fact

Loggerhead shrike populations have declined since the 1970s in Ontario and beyond.

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