Birds of prey face global decline from habitat loss, poisons

WASHINGTON (AP) – Despite a few high-profile conservation success stories, birds of prey worldwide are in decline.

A new analysis finds that 30% of 557 raptor species worldwide are considered near threatened, vulnerable or endangered. Eighteen species are critically endangered, including the Philippine eagle and the Annobon scops owl.

Other species are in danger of becoming locally extinct in specific regions, meaning they may no longer play critical roles as top predators in those ecosystems.

Globally, the biggest threats to raptors are habitat loss, climate change and toxic substances in the environment.

The research was published Monday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.