Extinct Birds in Canada

Nine types of birds have become extinct in Canada in recorded history. These include two populations of birds in the Georgia Depression of southwest British Columbia that were geographically isolated from other members of their species.

Four species on this list of extirpated Canadian birds are globally extinct: Labrador duck, eskimo curlew, great auk and passenger pigeon. The Georgia Depression population of Lewis's woodpecker is also gone from its entire range. The rest of the bird species, subspecies and populations no longer in Canada still survive in the United States.

Common Name Scientific Name Gone From
Aleutian Canada Goose Branta hutchinsii leucopareia British Columbia
Labrador Duck Camptorhynchus labradorius New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Quebec
Greater Prairie-chicken Tympanuchus cupido Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Saskatchewan
Eskimo Curlew Numenius borealis Alberta, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Northwest Territories, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Saskatchewan
Great Auk Pinguinus impennis New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Quebec
Passenger Pigeon Ectopistes migratorius All provinces except was never in Newfoundland and Labrador
Streaked Horned Lark Eremophila alpestris strigata British Columbia
Lewis's Woodpecker - Georgia Depression Melanerpes lewis pop. 1 British Columbia
Western Meadowlark - Georgia Depression Sturnella neglecta pop. 1 British Columbia

Provincial Losses of Birds

A half dozen bird species have vanished from their former range in one or more provinces, although they still live elsewhere in Canada.

Common Name Scientific Name Gone From
Greater Sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus British Columbia
Spruce Grouse Falcipennis canadensis Prince Edward Island
Whooping Crane Grus americana Manitoba, Nunavut, Saskatchewan
Long-billed Curlew Numenius americanus Manitoba
Yellow-billed Cuckoo Coccyzus americanus British Columbia
Trumpeter Swan Cygnus buccinator Manitoba to Nova Scotia, reintroduced in Ontario

Another ten bird species are suspected, but not yet confirmed, of being extirpated at a provincial level. If the Kirtland's warbler's has disappeared, this would also be a national loss.

Common Name Scientific Name Gone From
Northern Gannet Morus bassanus New Brunswick
Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos Manitoba
Pectoral Sandpiper Calidris melanotos Ontario
Black Guillemot Cepphus grylle Ontario
Loggerhead Shrike Lanius ludovicianus New Brunswick, Nova Scotia
Cliff Swallow Petrochelidon pyrrhonota Prince Edward Island
Bewick's Wren Thryomanes bewickii Ontario
Kirtland's Warbler Dendroica kirtlandii Ontario
Lark Bunting Calamospiza melanocorys Manitoba
Lark Sparrow Chondestes grammacus Ontario
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