Putnam Highlands Audubon Society

Important Bird Areas

Habitats worth protecting


Nearby IBAs worth visiting and protecting are:

  • Great Swamp
  • Little Whaley Lake
  • Fahnestock and Hudson Highlands State Parks
  • Constitution Marsh Sanctuary
  • Doodletown and Iona Island
  • Harriman and Sterling Forests
  • Lower Hudson River


Habitat is the key to conservation.  To thrive, all species need the right kinds of places to carry out the business of living and reproducing.  Without adequate and appropriate places to nest, forage, rest during migration, and over-winter, bird populations decline.  The Important Bird Areas (IBA) program is an international bird conservation initiative with simple goals: to identify the most important places for birds, and to conserve them.  IBAs are identified according to standardized, scientific criteria through a collaborative effort among state, national, and international non-governmental conservation groups, academics, grassroots environmentalists, and birders.  As a result, IBAs link global and continental bird conservation priorities to local sites that provide critical habitat for native bird populations.  Currently, IBA programs exist in 130 countries around the world, including 21 countries in the Americas.  In the U.S., 46 states have IBA programs.

New York's IBA Program
New York's IBA program began in 1996 with the identification of 127 IBAs.  In 2002, Audubon New York embarked on a second round of IBA site identifications.  The goals of the second round were to identify new sites and re-evaluate all existing IBAs to make sure that they continued to meet the IBA criteria.  136 sites have now been identified in New York.