The loggerhead shrike's historical range included much of southern Manitoba from the north end of Lake Winnipegosis to Whiteshell Provincial Park. Found in grassy areas near scattered trees and shrubs, nesting populations are now primarily concentrated in grasslands, shrubby areas or in the vicinity of shelterbelts in extreme southwestern Manitoba, with occasional nesting records south to Riding Mountain National Park, and east to the southern Interlake and Winnipeg. Populations in southeastern Manitoba are generally believed to belong to the more endangered migrans subspecies, which has undergone significant declines throughout its range and is primarily represented in Manitoba by a small nesting population near Winnipeg.
Loggerhead shrike populations continue to decline throughout North America and in Manitoba. Over 300 nesting pairs were recorded in Manitoba as recently as 1993, but surveys from 1999 to 2001 revealed only about 100 known nesting pairs per year. While cool, wet stretches since 1993 have severely hampered nesting success and contributed to recent declines, a combination of limiting factors are ultimately blamed for the species’ decline. These include decreased habitat quality due to outright loss, fragmentation and degradation of hunting, nesting and wintering habitat and increased losses of young and adults to predators, collisions with vehicles, pesticides, and other limiting factors on nesting areas, the winter range and on migration.
Monitoring, habitat enhancement and public awareness of this species has been carried out by Manitoba Conservation since the mid-1980s. A Recovery Action Group was recently formed for loggerhead shrikes in southeastern Manitoba to promote public awareness, increased monitoring, and to work with landowners and interest groups to protect and enhance nesting habitat in southeastern Manitoba. Currently considered Endangered under the Manitoba Endangered Species Act, the loggerhead shrike is in danger of becoming extirpated in this province.
For more information on the loggerhead shrike view the Manitoba's Species at Risk brochure (PDF document, 181 KB).