Watauga County's own Curtis Smalling is IBA ("important bird area") coordinator for Audubon North Carolina and is quoted extensively in an article this morning about threatened bird species in N.C. Curtis is a good man doing good work.
The two major threats to several dozen species in our state is air pollution and loss of habitat through development. Of particular concern in our mountains is the golden-winged warbler (pictured).
Audubon North Carolina's website is here and contains a wealth of information, including opportunities for volunteers.
Think wild species have nothing to do with you? The article linked above makes the point that birds are directly reflective of the health of our planet. The old "canary in the coal mine" symbol was in fact a fairly accurate rendition of reality.