Minnesota Birds

Class Aves

Aves (birds) is the class of animals that is characterized by being warm-blooded, laying hard-shelled eggs, and having a backbone, feathers, wings, a beak with no teeth, and two legs for forelimbs. They are the only clade of dinosaurs (Dinosauria) to have survived the Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction event 65.5 million years ago.

According to the American Ornithologists’ Union, there are 2,008 species of birds naturally occurring without the intervention of man in “North and Middle America including the adjacent islands under the jurisdiction of the included nations; the Hawaiian Islands; Clipperton Island; Bermuda; the West Indies, including the Bahama Islands, the Greater Antilles, Leeward and Windward islands of the Lesser Antilles.”

According to the Minnesota DNR, there are 428 bird species found in Minnesota, 44 of which are year-round residents.


European Starling


Recent Additions

White-winged Crossbill


White-winged Crossbill (Loxia leucoptera) is a colorful, medium-sized finch. It occurs in the temperate and subpolar regions of the Northern Hemisphere. In Minnesota it is common to uncommon in the northeastern coniferous and mixed forests, occasional to rare in the remainder of the state. Migration is irruptive, with large numbers visiting the state one year and none the following year.

White-winged Crossbill is found mostly in coniferous forests with spruce, tamarack, and eastern hemlock, sometimes in deciduous forests, and sometimes in towns. Adults feed mostly on spruce and tamarack seeds, but also on the seeds of other coniferous trees and deciduous trees, and occasionally on insects.

White-winged Crossbill breeding male is pinkish-red with black wings and tail. There are two bold white wing bars on each wing. This is the feature that gives the species its common name. The tips of the bill are crossed over, an adaptation that helps when extracting seeds from a spruce seed cone. Females are greenish-yellow streaked with brown.

  White-winged Crossbill  
    Photo by Dan W. Andree  

Cape May Warbler


Cape May Warbler (Setophaga tigrina) is a small perching bird but a medium-sized New World Warbler. Its breeds in Canada from Nova Scotia to the Northwest Territories, and in the United States in northern New England and the Upper Midwest. It builds its nest in a mature forest near the top of a tall spruce or balsam fir tree usually near the trunk. In Minnesota it breeds in Arrowhead region. It winters in the West Indies. It is an uncommon migrant in most of the state in May and from early August through October. It is rare in the west. It feeds on insects, especially spruce budworm, and on flower nectar and fruit juices.

Cape May Warbler adult is about 5 in length and has a wingspan of about 8. On the breeding male, the upper parts are dark olive green, the chin, sides of the neck (“collar”), and rump are yellow. There is a large chestnut-brown ear patch and a dark eye line. The bill is thin, dark, and slightly curved downward. The breast and flanks are yellow with dark stripes that converge on the throat. The undertail coverts are white. On each wing there is a distinct white patch. The tail is short. The female is paler overall and has two thin white wing patches. The crown is olive-gray and there is a grayish cheek patch.

  Cape May Warbler  
    Photo by Ramona Abrego  

Lesser Yellowlegs


Lesser Yellowlegs (Tringa flavipes) is a medium-sized sandpiper. It nests in meadows and open woodlands from Alaska to Quebec, and winters mostly in South America. It is a common to locally abundant migrant throughout Minnesota from late March to early June and from July to October. In Minnesota it is found in marshes, wet meadows, mudflats, and flooded agricultural fields, and on the shores of lakes and ponds. It eats mostly flies, beetles, and other insects, but also spiders, small fish, snails, crustaceans, worms, and seeds.

The population of Lesser Yellowlegs is declining due to habitat loss in part the result of climate change. However, the species range is extremely large and the species is not considered vulnerable.

A Lesser Yellowlegs looks similar to a Greater Yellowlegs but is smaller. The adult is 10 to 11 in length and has a wingspan of 24. It is a slender shorebird with a small head, a thin bill, and long, bright yellow legs. The nonbreeding plumage is uniformly gray on the upper side with fine, dark streaking. The underparts are white with small gray spots. There is a dark line from the bill to the eye. The bill is straight, thin, entirely black, and about the same length as the head.

  Lesser Yellowlegs  
    Photo by Lynn Rubey  

Olive-sided Flycatcher


Olive-sided Flycatcher (Contopus cooperi) is a medium-sized tyrant flycatcher (family Tyrannidae) but a large “flycatcher” as that common name is applied. Only Great-crested Flycatcher is larger. It has the longest migration of any North American flycatcher. Breeding grounds are the Rocky and Cascade Mountains from Texas to Alaska, across Canada and the northern border states to Newfoundland and Vermont. In Minnesota the breeding range includes the northeast third of the state. Wintering grounds are mostly in Panama and the northern Andes Mountains from northern Venezuela to western Bolivia.

Olive-sided Flycatcher is the only North American flycatcher to feed exclusively on insects caught in flight. When feeding it perches at the top of a tree or on a dead branch, launching occasionally to catch a flying insect in the air, and returning often to the same perch. Small insects are consumed in the air. Larger insects returned to and beaten against the perch to subdue.

Flycatchers are notoriously difficult to identify by plumage alone. Olive-sided Flycatcher is one exception to this rule. It is easily identified by its white breast and contrasting dark “vest”. It is further distinguished by its large size; indistinct pale wing bars; whitish undertail coverts with well-defined, dark, V-shaped markings; and inconspicuous eye ring.

  Olive-sided Flycatcher  

Ruby-throated Hummingbird


Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris) is the smallest breeding bird in the eastern United States and southeastern Canada. It is seldom seen but easily recognized because it is the only hummingbird that breeds in or migrates through Minnesota. It is a migratory bird, arriving in Minnesota in late April and early May. It is a solitary breeder—after mating the male has nothing more to do with the female or its offspring. In the fall, adults migrate across the Gulf of Mexico or along the western coast of Mexico to Central or South America.

  Ruby-throated Hummingbird  
    Photo by Bill Reynolds  
Other Recent Additions

White-faced Ibis (Plegadis chihi)

White-winged Dove (Zenaida asiatica)

Black Tern (Chlidonias niger)

Black-crowned Night Heron (Nycticorax nycticorax)

Gray-cheeked Thrush (Catharus minimus)

Willet (Tringa semipalmata)

  White-winged Dove  
    Photo by Earl Bye  









This list includes only birds that have been recorded in Minnesota, but not all of the birds found in Minnesota.

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Acadian Flycatcher (Empidonax virescens)

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Alder Flycatcher (Empidonax alnorum)

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American Avocet (Recurvirostra americana)

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American Bittern (Botaurus lentiginosus)

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American Black Duck (Anas rubripes)

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American Coot (Fulica americana)

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American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos)


American Golden Plover (Pluvialis dominica)

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American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)

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American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)


American Pipit (Anthus rubescens)

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American Redstart (Setophaga ruticilla)

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American Robin (Turdus migratorius)


American three-toed woodpecker (Picoides dorsalis)

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American Tree Sparrow (Spizelloides arborea)

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American White Pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos)

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American Widgeon (Mareca americana)

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American Woodcock (Scolopax minor)


Baird’s Sandpiper (Calidris bairdii)


Baird’s Sparrow (Ammodramus bairdii)

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Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)

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Baltimore Oriole (Icterus galbula)

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Bank Swallow (Riparia riparia)


Barn Owl (Tyto alba)

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Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)

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Barred Owl (Strix varia)


Barrow’s Goldeneye (Bucephala islandica)


Bay-breasted Warbler (Setophaga castanea)


Bell’s Vireo (Vireo bellii)

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Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon)

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Black Scoter (Melanitta nigra)

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Black Tern (Chlidonias niger)

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Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus)

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Black-and-white Warbler (Mniotilta varia)


Black-backed Woodpecker (Picoides arcticus)


Black-bellied Plover (Pluvialis squatarola)

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Black-bellied Whistling-Duck (Dendrocygna autumnalis)

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Black-billed Cuckoo (Coccyzus erythropthalmus)

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Black-billed Magpie (Pica hudsonia)

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Blackburnian Warbler (Setophaga fusca)

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Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)

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Black-crowned Night Heron (Nycticorax nycticorax)

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Black-necked Stilt (Himantopus mexicanus)

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Blackpoll Warbler (Setophaga striata)


Black-throated Blue Warbler (Setophaga caerulescens)

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Black-throated Green Warbler (Setophaga virens)

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Blue Grosbeak (Passerina caerulea)

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Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata)

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Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (Polioptila caerulea)

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Blue-headed Vireo (Vireo solitarius)

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Blue-winged Teal (Spatula discors)

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Blue-winged Warbler (Vermivora cyanoptera)

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Bobolink (Dolichonyx oryzivorus)

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Bohemian Waxwing (Bombycilla garrulus)


Bonaparte’s Gull (Chroicocephalus philadelphia)


Boreal Chickadee (Poecile hudsonicus)

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Boreal Owl (Aegolius funereus)

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Brewer’s Blackbird (Euphagus cyanocephalus)

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Broad-winged Hawk (Buteo platypterus)

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Brown Creeper (Certhia americana)

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Brown Thrasher (Toxostoma rufum)

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Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater)


Buff-breasted Sandpiper (Tryngites subruficollis)

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Bufflehead (Bucephala albeola)


Burrowing Owl (Athene cunicularia)


Cackling Goose (Branta hutchinsii)

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Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)

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Canada Jay (Perisoreus canadensis)

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Canada Warbler (Cardellina canadensis)

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Canvasback (Aythya valisineria)

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Cape May Warbler (Setophaga tigrina)

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Caspian Tern (Hydroprogne caspia)

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Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis)

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Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum)

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Cerulean Warbler (Setophaga cerulea)


Chestnut-collared Longspur (Calcarius ornatus)

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Chestnut-sided Warbler (Setophaga pensylvanica)

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Chimney Swift (Chaetura pelagica)

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Chipping Sparrow (Spizella passerina)


Cinnamon Teal (Anas cyanoptera)


Clark’s Grebe (Aechmophorus clarkii)


Clark’s Nutcracker (Nucifraga columbiana)

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Clay-colored Sparrow (Spizella pallida)

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Cliff Swallow (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota)


Common Gallinule (Gallinula galeata)

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Common Goldeneye (Bucephala clangula)

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Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula)

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Common Loon (Gavia immer)

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Common Merganser (Mergus merganser)


Common Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus)

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Common Nighthawk (Chordeiles minor)

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Common Raven (Corvus corax)

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Common Redpoll (Acanthis flammea)

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Common Tern (Sterna hirundo)

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Common Yellowthroat (Geothlypis trichas)


Connecticut Warbler (Oporonis agilis)

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Cooper’s Hawk (Accipiter cooperii)

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Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis)

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Dickcissel (Spiza americana)

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Double-crested Cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus)

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Downy Woodpecker (Dryobates pubescens)


Dunlin (Calidris alpina)


Eared Grebe (Podiceps nigricollis)

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Eastern Bluebird (Sialia sialis)

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Eastern Kingbird (Tyrannus tyrannus)

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Eastern Meadowlark (Sturnella magna)

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Eastern Phoebe (Sayornis phoebe)

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Eastern Screech Owl (Megascops asio)

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Eastern Towhee (Pipilo erythrophthalmus)


Eastern Whip-poor-will (Caprimulgus vociferus)

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Eastern Wood-peewee (Contopus virens)

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Eurasian Collared-Dove (Streptopelia decaocto)

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European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)

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Evening Grosbeak (Coccothraustes vespertinus)


Ferruginous Hawk (Buteo regalis)

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Field Sparrow (Spizella pusilla)

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Forster’s Tern (Sterna forsteri)

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Fox Sparrow (Passerella iliaca)

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Franklin’s Gull (Leucophaeus pipixcan)


Gadwall (Mareca strepera)


Glaucous Gull (Larus hyperboreus)

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Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos)

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Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa)

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Golden-winged Warbler (Vermivora chrysoptera)

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Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum)

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Gray Catbird (Dumetella carolinensis)

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Gray Partridge (Perdix perdix)

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Gray-cheeked Thrush (Catharus minimus)

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Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)

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Great Crested Flycatcher (Myiarchus crinitus)

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Great Egret (Ardea alba)

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Greater Prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus cupido)

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Great Gray Owl (Strix nebulosa)

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Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus)

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Greater Scaup (Aythya marila)


Greater White-fronted Goose (Anser albifrons)

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Greater Yellowlegs (Tringa melanoleuca)

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Green Heron (Butorides virescens)

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Green-winged Teal (Anas crecca)


Gyrfalcon (Falco rusticolus)

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Hairy Woodpecker (Leuconotopicus villosus)

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Harris’s Sparrow (Zonotrichia querula)


Helmeted Guineafowl (Numida meleagris)

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Henslow’s Sparrow (Centronyx henslowii)

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Hermit Thrush (Catharus guttatus)

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Herring Gull (Larus argentatus)


Hoary Redpoll (Acanthis hornemanni)

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Hooded Merganser (Lophodytes cucullatus)


Hooded Warbler (Setophaga citrina)

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Horned Grebe (Podiceps auritus)

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Horned Lark (Eremophila alpestris)

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House Finch (Haemorhous mexicanus)

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House Sparrow (Passer domesticus)

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House Wren (Troglodytes aedon)


Hudsonian Godwit (Limosa haemastica)


Iceland Gull (Larus glaucoides)

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Indigo Bunting (Passerina cyanea)


Kentucky Warbler (Geothlypis formosa)

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Killdeer (Charadrius vociferus)

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King Rail (Rallus elegans)

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Lapland Longspur (Calcarius lapponicus)

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Lark Sparrow (Chondestes grammacus)

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Laughing Gull (Leucophaeus atricilla)

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Lazuli Bunting (Passerina amoena)


Le Conte’s Sparrow (Ammodramus leconteii)


Least Bittern (Ixobrychus exilis)

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Least Flycatcher (Empidonax minimus)


Least Sandpiper (Calidris minutilla)


Lesser Black-backed Gull (Larus fuscus)


Lesser Scaup (Aythya affinis)

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Lesser Yellowlegs (Tringa flavipes)


Lewis’s Woodpecker (Melanerpes lewis)


Lincoln’s Sparrow (Melospiza lincolnii)


Little Blue Heron (Egrettacaerulea)

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Loggerhead Shrike (Lanius ludovicianus)

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Long-billed Curlew (Numenius americanus)


Long-billed Dowitcher (Limnodromus scolopaceus)

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Long-eared Owl (Asio otus)


Long-tailed Duck (Clangula hyemalis)

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Louisiana Waterthrush (Parkesia motacilla)

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Magnolia Warbler (Setophaga magnolia)

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Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)

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Marbled Godwit (Limosa fedoa)


Marsh Wren (Othorus palustris)


Merlin (Falco columbarius)


Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides)

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Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura)


Mourning Warbler (Geothlypis tolmiei)


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)

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Nashville Warbler (Leiothlypis ruficapilla)

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Nelson’s Sparrow (Ammospiza nelsoni)


Northern Bobwhite (Colinus virginianus)

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Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis)

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Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)


Northern Goshawk (Accipiter gentilis)

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Northern Harrier (Circus hudsonius)

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Northern Hawk Owl (Surnia ulula)


Northern Mockingbird (Mimus polyglottos)


Northern Parula (Setophaga americana)


Northern Pintail (Anas acuta)

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Northern Rough-winged Swallow (Stelgidopteryx serripennis)


Northern Saw-whet Owl (Aegolius acadicus)

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Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)

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Northern Shrike (Lanius borealis)

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Northern Waterthrush (Parkesia noveboracensis)

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Olive-sided Flycatcher (Contopus cooperi)


Orange-crowned Warbler (Vermivora celata)

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Orchard Oriole (Icterus spurius)

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Osprey (Pandion haliaetus)

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Ovenbird (Seiurus aurocapilla)

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Palm Warbler (Setophaga palmarum)


Pectoral Sandpiper (Calidris melanotos)

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Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus)


Philadelphia Vireo (Vireo philadelphicus)

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Pied-billed Grebe (Podilymbus podiceps)

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Pileated Woodpecker (Dryocopus pileatus)

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Pine Grosbeak (Pinicola enucleator)


Pine Siskin (Carduelis pinus)


Pine Warbler (Setophaga pinus)


Piping Plover (Charadrius melodus)


Prairie Falcon (Falco mexicanus)


Prairie Warbler (Setophaga discolor)


Prothonotary Warbler (Protonotaria citrea)

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Purple Finch (Haemorhous purpureus)

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Purple Martin (Progne subis)


Red Crossbill (Loxia curvirostra)


Red Knot (Calidris canutus)

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Red-bellied Woodpecker (Melanerpes carolinus)


Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator)

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Red-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta canadensis)

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Red-eyed Vireo (Vireo olivaceus)


Redhead (Aythya americana)

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Red-headed Woodpecker (Melanerpes erythrocephalus)

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Red-necked Grebe (Podiceps grisegena)


Red-necked Phalarope (Phalaropus lobatus)

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Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo lineatus)

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Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)


Red-throated Loon (Gavia stellata)

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Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus)

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Ring-billed Gull (Larus delawarensis)


Ring-necked Duck (Aythya collaris)

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Ring-necked Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus)

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Rock Pigeon (Columba livia)

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Rose-breasted Grosbeak (Pheucticus ludovicianus)


Ross’s Goose (Chen rossii)

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Rough-legged Hawk (Buteo lagopus)

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Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula)

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Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris)


Ruddy Duck (Oxyura jamaicensis)

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Ruddy Turnstone (Arenaria interpres)

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Ruffed Grouse (Bonasa umbellus)

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Rusty Blackbird (Euphagus carolinus)


Sanderling (Calidris alba)

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Sandhill Crane (Antigone canadensis)

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Savannah Sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis)


Say’s Phoebe (Sayornis saya)

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Scarlet Tanager (Piranga olivacea)

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Sedge Wren (Cistothorus platensis)


Semipalmated Plover (Charadrius semipalmatus)


Semipalmated Sandpiper (Calidris pusilla)

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Sharp-shinned Hawk (Accipiter striatus)

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Sharp-tailed Grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus)

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Short-billed Dowitcher (Limnodromus griseus)


Short-eared Owl (Asio flammeus)

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Snow Bunting (Plectrophenax nivalis)


Snow Goose (Anser caerulescens)


Snowy Egret (Egretta thula)

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Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus)


Solitary Sandpiper (Tringa solitaria)

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Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia)

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Sora (Porzana carolina)

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Spotted Sandpiper (Actitis macularius)

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Spotted Towhee (Pipilo maculatus)


Sprague’s Pipit (Anthus spragueii)


Spruce Grouse (Falcipennis canadensis)


Stilt Sandpiper (Calidris himantopus)


Summer Tanager (Piranga rubra)


Surf Scoter (Melanitta perspicillata)


Swainson’s Hawk (Buteo swainsoni)

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Swainson’s Thrush (Catharus ustulatus)

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Swamp Sparrow (Melospiza georgiana)


swan (Cygnus spp.)

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Tennessee Warbler (Leiothlypis peregrina)


Townsend’s Solitaire (Myadestes townsendi)

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Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor)


Tricolored Heron (Egretta tricolor)

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Trumpeter Swan (Cygnus buccinator)

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Tufted Titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor)

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Tundra Swan (Cygnus columbianus)

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Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)

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Upland Sandpiper (Bartramia longicauda)


Varied Thrush (Ixoreus naevius)

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Veery (Catharus fuscescens)

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Vesper Sparrow (Pooecetes gramineus)

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Virginia Rail (Rallus limicola)


Warbling Vireo (Vireo gilvus)


Western Grebe (Aechmophorus occidentalis)


Western Kingbird (Tyrannus verticalis)

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Western Meadowlark (Sturnella neglecta)

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White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis)

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White-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys)

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White-faced Ibis (Plegadis chihi)


White-rumped Sandpiper (Calidris fuscicollis)

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White-throated Sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis)

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White-winged Crossbill (Loxia leucoptera)

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White-winged Dove (Zenaida asiatica)


White-winged Scoter (Melanitta deglandi)


Whooping Crane (Grus americana)

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Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo)

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Willet (Tringa semipalmata)


Willow Flycatcher (Empidonax traillii)


Wilson’s Phalarope (Phalaropus tricolor)

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Wilson’s Snipe (Gallinago delicata)


Wilson’s Warbler (Cardellina pusilla)


Winter Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes)

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Wood Duck (Aix sponsa)

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Wood Thrush (Hylocichla mustelina)


Yellow Rail (Coturnicops noveboracensis)

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Yellow Warbler (Setophaga petechia)

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Yellow-bellied Flycatcher (Empidonax flaviventris)

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Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus varius)


Yellow-billed Cuckoo (Coccyzus americanus)


Yellow-crowned Night-heron (Nyctanassa violacea)

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Yellow-headed Blackbird (Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus)

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Yellow-rumped Warbler (Setophaga coronata)


Yellow-throated Vireo (Vireo flavifrons)


Acanthis flammea (Common Redpoll)

Acanthis hornemanni (Hoary Redpoll)

Accipiter cooperii (Cooper’s Hawk)

Accipiter gentilis (Northern Goshawk)

Accipiter striatus (Sharp-shinned Hawk)

Actitis macularius (Spotted Sandpiper)

Aechmophorus clarkii (Clark’s Grebe)

Aechmophorus occidentalis (Western Grebe)

Aegolius acadicus (Northern Saw-whet Owl)

Aegolius funereus (Boreal Owl)

Agelaius phoeniceus (Red-winged Blackbird)

Aix sponsa (Wood Duck)

Ammodramus bairdii (Baird’s Sparrow)

Ammodramus leconteii (Le Conte’s Sparrow)

Ammodramus savannarum (Grasshopper Sparrow)

Ammospiza nelsoni (Nelson’s Sparrow)

Anas acuta (Northern Pintail)

Anas clypeata (Northern Shoveler)

Anas crecca (Green-winged Teal)

Anas cyanoptera (Cinnamon Teal)

Anas platyrhynchos (Mallard)

Anas rubripes (American Black Duck)

Anser albifrons (Greater White-fronted Goose)

Anser caerulescens (Snow Goose)

Anser rossii (Ross’s Goose)

Anthus rubescens (American Pipit)

Anthus spragueii (Sprague’s Pipit)

Antigone canadensis (Sandhill Crane)

Aquila chrysaetos (Golden Eagle)

Archilochus colubris (Ruby-throated Hummingbird)

Ardea alba (Great Egret)

Ardea herodias (Great Blue Heron)

Arenaria interpres (Ruddy Turnstone)

Asio flammeus (Short-eared Owl)

Asio otus (Long-eared Owl)

Athene cunicularia (Burrowing Owl)

Aythya affinis (Lesser Scaup)

Aythya americana (Redhead)

Aythya collaris (Ring-necked Duck)

Aythya marila (Greater Scaup)

Aythya valisineria (Canvasback)

Baeolophus bicolor (Tufted Titmouse)

Bartramia longicauda (Upland Sandpiper)

Bombycilla cedrorum (Cedar Waxwing)

Bombycilla garrulus (Bohemian Waxwing)

Bonasa umbellus (Ruffed Grouse)

Botaurus lentiginosus (American Bittern)

Branta canadensis (Canada Goose)

Branta hutchinsii (Cackling Goose)

Bubo scandiacus (Snowy Owl)

Bubo virginianus (Great Horned Owl)

Bubulcus ibis (Cattle Egret)

Bucephala albeola (Bufflehead)

Bucephala clangula (Common Goldeneye)

Bucephala islandica (Barrow’s Goldeneye)

Buteo jamaicensis (Red-tailed Hawk)

Buteo lagopus (Rough-legged Hawk)

Buteo lineatus (Red-shouldered Hawk)

Buteo platypterus (Broad-winged Hawk)

Buteo regalis (Ferruginous Hawk)

Buteo swainsoni (Swainson’s Hawk)

Butorides virescens (Green Heron)

Calcarius lapponicus (Lapland Longspur)

Calcarius ornatus (Chestnut-collared Longspur)

Calidris alba (Sanderling)

Calidris alpina (Dunlin)

Calidris bairdii (Baird's Sandpiper)

Calidris canutus (Red Knot)

Calidris fuscicollis (White-rumped Sandpiper)

Calidris himantopus (Stilt Sandpiper)

Calidris melanotos (Pectoral Sandpiper)

Calidris minutilla (Least Sandpiper)

Calidris pusilla (Semipalmated Sandpiper)

Caprimulgus vociferus (Eastern Whip-poor-will)

Cardellina canadensis (Canada Warbler)

Cardellina pusilla (Wilson’s Warbler)

Cardinalis cardinalis (Northern Cardinal)

Carduelis pinus (Pine Siskin)

Cathartes aura (Turkey Vulture)

Catharus fuscescens (Veery)

Catharus guttatus (Hermit Thrush)

Catharus minimus (Gray-cheeked Thrush)

Catharus ustulatus (Swainson’s Thrush)

Centronyx henslowii (Henslow’s Sparrow)

Certhia americana (Brown Creeper)

Chaetura pelagica (Chimney Swift)

Charadrius melodus (Piping Plover)

Charadrius semipalmatus (Semipalmated Plover)

Charadrius vociferus (Killdeer)

Chlidonias niger (Black Tern)

Chondestes grammacus (Lark Sparrow)

Chordeiles minor (Common Nighthawk)

Chroicocephalus philadelphia (Bonaparte’s Gull)

Circus hudsonius (Northern Harrier)

Cistothorus platensis (Sedge Wren)

Clangula hyemalis (Long-tailed Duck)

Coccothraustes vespertinus (Evening Grosbeak)

Coccyzus americanus (Yellow-billed Cuckoo)

Coccyzus erythropthalmus (Black-billed Cuckoo)

Colaptes auratus (Northern Flicker)

Colinus virginianus (Northern Bobwhite)

Columba livia (Rock Pigeon)

Contopus cooperi (Olive-sided Flycatcher)

Contopus virens (Eastern Wood-peewee)

Coragyps atratus (Black Vulture)

Corvus brachyrhynchos (American Crow)

Corvus corax (Common Raven)

Coturnicops noveboracensis (Yellow Rail)

Cyanocitta cristata (Blue Jay)

Cygnus buccinator (Trumpeter Swan)

Cygnus columbianus (Tundra Swan)

Cygnus olor (Mute Swan)

Cygnus spp. (swan)

Dendrocygna autumnalis (Black-bellied Whistling-Duck)

Dolichonyx oryzivorus (Bobolink)

Dryobates pubescens (Downy Woodpecker)

Dryocopus pileatus (Pileated Woodpecker)

Dumetella carolinensis (Gray Catbird)

Egretta thula (Snowy Egret)

Egretta tricolor (Tricolored Heron)

Egrettacaerulea (Little Blue Heron)

Empidonax alnorum (Alder Flycatcher)

Empidonax flaviventris (Yellow-bellied Flycatcher)

Empidonax minimus (Least Flycatcher)

Empidonax traillii (Willow Flycatcher)

Empidonax virescens (Acadian Flycatcher)

Eremophila alpestris (Horned Lark)

Euphagus carolinus (Rusty Blackbird)

Euphagus cyanocephalus (Brewer’s Blackbird)

Falcipennis canadensis (Spruce Grouse)

Falco columbarius (Merlin)

Falco mexicanus (Prairie Falcon)

Falco peregrinus (Peregrine Falcon)

Falco rusticolus (Gyrfalcon)

Falco sparverius (American Kestrel)

Fulica americana (American Coot)

Gallinago delicata (Wilson’s Snipe)

Gallinula chloropus (Common Moorhen)

Gallinula galeata (Common Gallinule)

Gavia immer (Common Loon)

Gavia stellata (Red-throated Loon)

Geothlypis formosa (Kentucky Warbler)

Geothlypis tolmiei (Mourning Warbler)

Geothlypis trichas (Common Yellowthroat)

Grus americana (Whooping Crane)

Haemorhous mexicanus (House Finch)

Haemorhous purpureus (Purple Finch)

Haliaeetus leucocephalus (Bald Eagle)

Himantopus mexicanus (Black-necked Stilt)

Hirundo rustica (Barn Swallow)

Hydroprogne caspia (Caspian Tern)

Hylocichla mustelina (Wood Thrush)

Icterus galbula (Baltimore Oriole)

Icterus spurius (Orchard Oriole)

Ixobrychus exilis (Least Bittern)

Ixoreus naevius (Varied Thrush)

Junco hyemalis (Dark-eyed Junco)

Lanius borealis (Northern Shrike)

Lanius ludovicianus (Loggerhead Shrike)

Larus argentatus (Herring Gull)

Larus delawarensis (Ring-billed Gull)

Larus fuscus (Lesser Black-backed Gull)

Larus glaucoides (Iceland Gull)

Larus hyperboreus (Glaucous Gull)

Leiothlypis peregrina (Tennessee Warbler)

Leiothlypis ruficapilla (Nashville Warbler)

Leuconotopicus villosus (Hairy Woodpecker)

Leucophaeus atricilla (Laughing Gull)

Leucophaeus pipixcan (Franklin’s Gull)

Limnodromus griseus (Short-billed Dowitcher)

Limnodromus scolopaceus (Long-billed Dowitcher)

Limosa fedoa (Marbled Godwit)

Limosa haemastica (Hudsonian Godwit)

Lophodytes cucullatus (Hooded Merganser)

Loxia curvirostra (Red Crossbill)

Loxia leucoptera (White-winged Crossbill)

Mareca americana (American Widgeon)

Mareca strepera (Gadwall)

Megaceryle alcyon (Belted Kingfisher)

Megascops asio (Eastern Screech Owl)

Melanerpes carolinus (Red-bellied Woodpecker)

Melanerpes erythrocephalus (Red-headed Woodpecker)

Melanerpes lewis (Lewis’s Woodpecker)

Melanitta deglandi (White-winged Scoter)

Melanitta nigra (Black Scoter)

Melanitta perspicillata (Surf Scoter)

Meleagris gallopavo (Wild Turkey)

Melospiza georgiana (Swamp Sparrow)

Melospiza lincolnii (Lincoln’s Sparrow)

Melospiza melodia (Song Sparrow)

Mergus merganser (Common Merganser)

Mergus serrator (Red-breasted Merganser)

Mimus polyglottos (Northern Mockingbird)

Mniotilta varia (Black-and-white Warbler)

Molothrus ater (Brown-headed Cowbird)

Myadestes townsendi (Townsend’s Solitaire)

Myiarchus crinitus (Great Crested Flycatcher)

Nucifraga columbiana (Clark’s Nutcracker)

Numenius americanus (Long-billed Curlew)

Numida meleagris (Helmeted Guineafowl)

Nyctanassa violacea (Yellow-crowned Night-heron)

Nycticorax nycticorax (Black-crowned Night Heron)

Oporonis agilis (Connecticut Warbler)

Othorus palustris (Marsh Wren)

Oxyura jamaicensis (Ruddy Duck)

Pandion haliaetus (Osprey)

Parkesia motacilla (Louisiana Waterthrush)

Parkesia noveboracensis (Northern Waterthrush)

Passer domesticus (House Sparrow)

Passerculus sandwichensis (Savannah Sparrow)

Passerella iliaca (Fox Sparrow)

Passerina amoena (Lazuli Bunting)

Passerina caerulea (Blue Grosbeak)

Passerina cyanea (Indigo Bunting)

Pelecanus erythrorhynchos (American White Pelican)

Perdix perdix (Gray Partridge)

Perisoreus canadensis (Canada Jay)

Petrochelidon pyrrhonota (Cliff Swallow)

Phalacrocorax auritus (Double-crested Cormorant)

Phalaropus lobatus (Red-necked Phalarope)

Phalaropus tricolor (Wilson’s Phalarope)

Phasianus colchicus (Ring-necked Pheasant)

Pheucticus ludovicianus (Rose-breasted Grosbeak)

Pica hudsonia (Black-billed Magpie)

Picoides arcticus (Black-backed Woodpecker)

Picoides dorsalis (American three-toed woodpecker)

Pinicola enucleator (Pine Grosbeak)

Pipilo erythrophthalmus (Eastern Towhee)

Pipilo maculatus (Spotted Towhee)

Piranga olivacea (Scarlet Tanager)

Piranga rubra (Summer Tanager)

Plectrophenax nivalis (Snow Bunting)

Plegadis chihi (White-faced Ibis)

Pluvialis dominica (American Golden Plover)

Pluvialis squatarola (Black-bellied Plover)

Podiceps auritus (Horned Grebe)

Podiceps grisegena (Red-necked Grebe)

Podiceps nigricollis (Eared Grebe)

Podilymbus podiceps (Pied-billed Grebe)

Poecile atricapillus (Black-capped Chickadee)

Poecile hudsonicus (Boreal Chickadee)

Polioptila caerulea (Blue-gray Gnatcatcher)

Pooecetes gramineus (Vesper Sparrow)

Porzana carolina (Sora)

Progne subis (Purple Martin)

Protonotaria citrea (Prothonotary Warbler)

Quiscalus quiscula (Common Grackle)

Rallus elegans (King Rail)

Rallus limicola (Virginia Rail)

Recurvirostra americana (American Avocet)

Regulus calendula (Ruby-crowned Kinglet)

Regulus satrapa (Golden-crowned Kinglet)

Riparia riparia (Bank Swallow)

Sayornis phoebe (Eastern Phoebe)

Sayornis saya (Say’s Phoebe)

Scolopax minor (American Woodcock)

Seiurus aurocapilla (Ovenbird)

Setophaga americana (Northern Parula)

Setophaga caerulescens (Black-throated Blue Warbler)

Setophaga castanea (Bay-breasted Warbler)

Setophaga cerulea (Cerulean Warbler)

Setophaga citrina (Hooded Warbler)

Setophaga coronata (Yellow-rumped Warbler)

Setophaga discolor (Prairie Warbler)

Setophaga fusca (Blackburnian Warbler)

Setophaga magnolia (Magnolia Warbler)

Setophaga palmarum (Palm Warbler)

Setophaga pensylvanica (Chestnut-sided Warbler)

Setophaga petechia (Yellow Warbler)

Setophaga pinus (Pine Warbler)

Setophaga ruticilla (American Redstart)

Setophaga striata (Blackpoll Warbler)

Setophaga tigrina (Cape May Warbler)

Setophaga virens (Black-throated Green Warbler)

Sialia currucoides (Mountain Bluebird)

Sialia sialis (Eastern Bluebird)

Sitta canadensis (Red-breasted Nuthatch)

Sitta carolinensis (White-breasted Nuthatch)

Spatula discors (Blue-winged Teal)

Sphyrapicus varius (Yellow-bellied Sapsucker)

Spinus tristis (American Goldfinch)

Spiza americana (Dickcissel)

Spizella pallida (Clay-colored Sparrow)

Spizella passerina (Chipping Sparrow)

Spizella pusilla (Field Sparrow)

Spizelloides arborea (American Tree Sparrow)

Stelgidopteryx serripennis (Northern Rough-winged Swallow)

Sterna forsteri (Forster’s Tern)

Sterna hirundo (Common Tern)

Streptopelia decaocto (Eurasian Collared-Dove)

Strix nebulosa (Great Gray Owl)

Strix varia (Barred Owl)

Sturnella magna (Eastern Meadowlark)

Sturnella neglecta (Western Meadowlark)

Sturnus vulgaris (European Starling)

Surnia ulula (Northern Hawk Owl)

Tachycineta bicolor (Tree Swallow)

Toxostoma rufum (Brown Thrasher)

Tringa flavipes (Lesser Yellowlegs)

Tringa melanoleuca (Greater Yellowlegs)

Tringa semipalmata (Willet)

Tringa solitaria (Solitary Sandpiper)

Troglodytes aedon (House Wren)

Troglodytes troglodytes (Winter Wren)

Tryngites subruficollis (Buff-breasted Sandpiper)

Turdus migratorius (American Robin)

Tympanuchus cupido (Greater Prairie-chicken)

Tympanuchus phasianellus (Sharp-tailed Grouse)

Tyrannus tyrannus (Eastern Kingbird)

Tyrannus verticalis (Western Kingbird)

Tyto alba (Barn Owl)

Vermivora celata (Orange-crowned Warbler)

Vermivora chrysoptera (Golden-winged Warbler)

Vermivora cyanoptera (Blue-winged Warbler)

Vireo bellii (Bell’s Vireo)

Vireo flavifrons (Yellow-throated Vireo)

Vireo gilvus (Warbling Vireo)

Vireo olivaceus (Red-eyed Vireo)

Vireo philadelphicus (Philadelphia Vireo)

Vireo solitarius (Blue-headed Vireo)

Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus (Yellow-headed Blackbird)

Zenaida asiatica (White-winged Dove)

Zenaida macroura (Mourning Dove)

Zonotrichia albicollis (White-throated Sparrow)

Zonotrichia leucophrys (White-crowned Sparrow)

Zonotrichia querula (Harris’s Sparrow)


American Avocet

American Bittern

American Coot

American Crow

American Goldfinch

American Redstart

American Robin

American White Pelican

American Woodcock

Bald Eagle

Baltimore Oriole Nest

Barn Swallow

Barred Owl

Belted Kingfisher

Black-billed Magpie

Black-capped Chickadee

Blue Jay

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (Polioptila caerulea)

Blue-winged Teal

Blue-winged Warbler

Brown Thrasher

Brown-headed Cowbird

Canada Goose

Canada Jay

Caspian Tern

Cedar Waxwing

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chipping Sparrow

Common Grackle

Common Loon

Common Nighthawk

Cooper’s Hawk

Dark-eyed Junco

Downy Woodpecker

Eastern Bluebird

Eastern Kingbird

Eastern Phoebe

Eastern Screech Owl

Eurasian Collared-Dove

European Starling

Golden Eagle

Golden-winged Warbler

Gray Catbird

Great Blue Heron

Great Crested Flycatcher

Great Egret

Greater Prairie-chicken

Green Heron

Green-winged Teal

Hairy Woodpecker

Harris’s Sparrow

Hooded Merganser

Horned Grebe

House Finch

House Sparrow

House Wren

Indigo Bunting


Lesser Yellowlegs











Magnolia Warbler


Mourning Dove

Northern Cardinal

Northern Flicker

Northern Harrier

Northern Shoveler

Northern Shrike

Olive-sided Flycatcher


Pied-billed Grebe

Pileated Woodpecker

Purple Finch

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Red-breasted Nuthatch

Red-eyed Vireo

Red-headed Woodpecker

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-winged Blackbird

Ring-billed Gull

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Rough-legged Hawk

Ruby-crowned Kinglet

whitetail deer

Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Ruffed Grouse

Rusty Blackbird

Scarlet Tanager

Song Sparrow

Swainson’s thrush

Tennessee Warbler

Tree Swallow

Trumpeter Swan

Tundra Swan

Turkey Vulture

Virginia Rail

White-breasted Nuthatch

White-crowned Sparrow

White-faced Ibis

White-throated Sparrow

White-winged Crossbill

White-winged Dove

Wild Turkey

Wilson’s Snipe

Wood Duck

Yellow-bellied Flycatcher

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Yellow Warbler



No Species Page Yet?

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Capitalization of Common Names

Bird common names are governed by the International Ornithologists’ Union (IOU). In 1991 the IOU began a project to standardize English language names of birds. The goal was to officially sanction a single, unique name for each species. In 2006 the project was completed and the resulting list was published in book form as Birds of the World: Recommended English Names, by Frank Gill & Minturn Wright. According to the IOU, English language bird names have “graduated from the realm of ‘common/vernacular’ names,” and must be regarded as proper nouns. For this reason, bird common names are capitalized.

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