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The Birds of Christmas Island form a heterogeneous group of 162 species. There is a core group of 4 endemics that have evolved on the remote island in the eastern Indian Ocean for thousands of years, attended by a suite of regular migrants, opportunists and occasional visitors. Some 200 km from the nearest land, Java, Christmas Island was not occupied by humans until the late 19th century. It is now an Australian territory. The natural vegetation of most of the 140 km² island is rainforest, to which the endemic landbirds are adapted, while the seabirds have taken advantage of a breeding location which had no major natural predators.

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  • The Birds of Christmas Island form a heterogeneous group of 162 species. There is a core group of 4 endemics that have evolved on the remote island in the eastern Indian Ocean for thousands of years, attended by a suite of regular migrants, opportunists and occasional visitors. Some 200 km from the nearest land, Java, Christmas Island was not occupied by humans until the late 19th century. It is now an Australian territory. The natural vegetation of most of the 140 km² island is rainforest, to which the endemic landbirds are adapted, while the seabirds have taken advantage of a breeding location which had no major natural predators. This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 2021 edition. The family accounts at the beginning of each heading reflect this taxonomy, as do the species counts in each family account. Introduced and accidental species are included in the total counts for Christmas Island. After over a century of human exploitation of the phosphate deposits covering much of the island, two thirds of the rainforest cover remains and is now protected as a national park. However, gaps where the forest has been cleared, and the introduction of exotic fauna, continue to destabilise the island's biological diversity. The endemic Abbott's booby is threatened when nesting by wind turbulence caused by past forest clearance. However, the biggest immediate threat is the introduction and spread of yellow crazy ants, through both direct predation and ecosystem collapse. This has led to all the island's endemic bird species and subspecies being classified as Critically Endangered. Meanwhile, the number of species recorded from Christmas Island continues to increase as birders, especially from Australia, attracted by the island's endemics, record a variety of vagrants previously unnoticed. Some of these may in time, as with the white-breasted waterhen, establish breeding populations. Christmas Island is now seen as a birding ‘hot spot’, not only for its endemics but also for the chance of recording new species for the Australian bird list, something reflected in the frequency of submissions of sightings to the Birds Australia Rarities Committee. The following tags have been used to highlight several categories. The commonly occurring native species do not fall into any of these categories. * (A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in Christmas Island * (I) Introduced - a species introduced to Christmas Island as a consequence, direct or indirect, of human actions * (E) Endemic - a species that is native only to Christmas Island (en)
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  • The Birds of Christmas Island form a heterogeneous group of 162 species. There is a core group of 4 endemics that have evolved on the remote island in the eastern Indian Ocean for thousands of years, attended by a suite of regular migrants, opportunists and occasional visitors. Some 200 km from the nearest land, Java, Christmas Island was not occupied by humans until the late 19th century. It is now an Australian territory. The natural vegetation of most of the 140 km² island is rainforest, to which the endemic landbirds are adapted, while the seabirds have taken advantage of a breeding location which had no major natural predators. (en)
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  • List of birds of Christmas Island (en)
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