Bird Checklist

All listed birds have been documented on buffer and aquatic preserve lands in the time periods shown after the species. Resident means breeding or non-breeding birds have been recorded all times of the year; special notes follow some species to indicate the best time period for observation.     Bird Checklist PDF

Family GAVIIDAE: Loons

 _ Red throated LoonGavia stellata. Oct-Mar
 _ Common LoonGavia immer. Oct‑Apr


 _ Pied billed GrebePodilymbus podiceps. Resident
 _ Horned GrebePodiceps auritus. Oct-Jun
 _ Red necked GrebePodiceps grisegena. Dec-Jan
 _ Eared GrebePodiceps nigricollis. Dec-Jan

Family SULIDAE: Boobies and Gannets

 _ Masked (Blue‑faced) BoobySula dactylatra. Jul-Aug­
 _ Brown BoobySula leucogaster. Jul
 _ Northern GannetMorus bassanus. Aug‑May. Dec and Apr are the best months to observe this species.

Family PELECANIDAE: Pelicans

 _ American White PelicanPelecanus erythrorhynchos. Sep‑Jan; ­Mar-Jul
 _ Brown PelicanPelecanus occidentalis. Resident.


 _ Double crested CormorantPhalacrocorax auritus. Sep‑May

Family ANHINGIDAE: Darters

 _ AnhingaAnhinga anhinga. Resident. Apr‑Dec

Family FREGATIDAE: Frigatebirds

  _ Magnificent FrigatebirdFregata magnificens. Mar‑Nov After a strong southerly storm.

Family ARDEIDAE: Bitterns, Herons, and Egrets

_ American BitternBotaurus lentiginosus. Sep‑Jul; Jan-Mar
_ Least BitternIxobrychus exilis. Mar‑Dec
_ Great Blue HeronArdea herodias. Resident.
_ Great White Heron. Sep-Oct
_ American Egret Casmerodius albus  Resident
_ Great EgretArdea alba. Resident
_ Snowy EgretEgretta thula. Resident
_ Little Blue HeronEgretta caerulea. Resident
_ Tricolored (Louisiana) HeronEgretta tricolor. Resident
_ Reddish EgretEgretta rufescens. Resident. Oct-May
_ Cattle EgretBubulcus ibis. Resident. Jan-Apr are the best months to observe this species.
_ Green HeronButorides virescens. Resident. Mar-Oct are the best months to observe this species.
_ Black crowned Night HeronNycticorax nycticorax. Resident
_ Yellow crowned Night HeronNyctanassa violacea. Resident. Apr‑Oct are the best months to observe this species.

Family THRESKIORNITHIDAE: Ibises and Spoonbills

_ White IbisEudocimus albus. Resident
_ Glossy IbisPlegadis falcinellus. Mar-Oct

Family CICONIIDAE: Storks

_ Wood StorkMycteria americana. Resident. May-Oct are the best months to observe this species.

Family CATHARTIDAE: New World Vultures

_ Black VultureCoragyps atratus. Resident
_ Turkey VultureCathartes aura. Resident

Family ANATIDAE: Waterfowl

_ Wood DuckAix sponsa. Resident
_ GadwallAnas strepera. Oct‑Mar
_ American WigeonAnas americana. Sep‑Apr
_ American Black DuckAnas rubripes. Oct‑Apr
_ MallardAnas platyrhynchos. ­Nov‑Apr
_ Blue winged TealAnas discors. Year-round. Sep is the best month to observe this species.
_ Northern ShovelerAnas clypeata. Aug ‑May
_ Northern PintailAnas acuta. Oct‑Mar; Jul-Aug
_ Green winged TealAnas crecca. Sep‑Mar
_ CanvasbackAythya valisineria. Oct-Feb
_ RedheadAythya americana. Oct‑Apr
_ Fulvus Whistling Duck  Dendrocygna bicolor Spring
_ Ring necked DuckAythya collaris. Oct‑May
_ Lesser ScaupAythya affinis. Oct-Jun.
_ Surf ScoterMelanitta perspicillata. Oct-Dec
_ White winged ScoterMelanitta fusca. Nov-Jan; May
_ Black ScoterMelanitta nigra. Oct-Dec
_ Long-tailed Duck (Oldsquaw)Clangula hyemalis. Dec-Jan
_ BuffleheadBucephala albeola. Nov‑May
_ Common Golden-eyeBucephala clangula. Nov‑Mar
_ Hooded MerganserLophodytes cucullatus. Nov-Mar
_ Red breasted MerganserMergus serrator. Nov‑Apr
_ Ruddy DuckOxyura jamaicensis. Oct‑Jun

Family ACCIPITRIDAE: Kites, Eagles, Hawks and Allies

_ OspreyPandion haliaetus. Resident
_ Swallow tailed KiteElanoides forficatus. Feb-Jun on the Chipola River.
_ Mississippi KiteIctinia mississippiensis. Apr-Sep on the Chipola River.
_ Bald EagleHaliaeetus leucocephalus. Resident
_ Northern HarrierCircus cyaneus. Aug-May. Most frequently seen in Mar‑Apr and Sep‑Oct.
_ Sharp shinned HawkAccipiter striatus. Aug-Apr. Most frequently seen Sep‑Oct in migration at St Joseph State Park.
_ Cooper’s HawkAccipiter cooperii. Resident
_ Red shouldered Hawk. Buteo lineatus. Resident
_ Broad winged HawkButeo platypterus. Mar‑Oct
_ Swainson’s HawkButeo swainsoni. Oct. Most frequently seen Oct in migration at St Joseph State Park.
_ Red‑tailed HawkButeo jamaicensis. Resident
_ Golden EagleAquila chrysaetos. Apr-Jun; Oct-Dec

Family FALCONIDAE: Caracaras and Falcons

_ American KestrelFalco sparverius. Resident
 MerlinFalco columbarius. Sep- Apr. Most frequently seen Sep‑Oct in migration at St Joseph State Park.
_ Peregrine FalconFalco peregrinus. Sep‑Apr. Most frequently seen Sep‑Oct in migration at St Joseph State Park.

Family PHASIANIDAE: Turkey

_ Wild TurkeyMeleagris gallopavo. Resident. Jul and Feb are the best months to observe this species.


_ Northern BobwhiteColinus virginianus. Resident

Family RALLIDAE: Rails, Gallinules, and Coots

_ Black RailLaterallus jamaicensis. Apr-May; Oct-Nov
_ Clapper Rail. Rallus longirostris. Resident
_ King RailRallus elegans. Resident
_ Virginia RailRallus limicola. Sep‑Apr
_ SoraPorzana carolina. Jul-May. Most frequently seen in Sep‑Nov and Apr.
_ Purple GallinulePorphyrio martinica. Resident. Apr‑Nov are the best months to observe this species.
_ Common Moorhen (Gallinule)Gallinula chloropus. Resident
_ American CootFulica americana. Resident

Family GRUIDAE: Cranes

_ Sandhill CraneGrus canadensis. Sep; Dec-May

Family CHARADRIIDAE: Plovers

_ Black bellied PloverPluvialis squatarola. Aug‑Sep; Apr‑May.
_ American (Lesser) Golden-PloverPluvialis dominica. Mar-Apr; Sep‑Dec
_ Snowy PloverCharadrius alexandrinus. Resident
_Wilson’s PloverCharadrius wilsonia. Resident. Mar‑Sep and Nov are the best months to observe this species
_ Semipalmated PloverCharadrius semipalmatus. Recorded every month of year. May and Aug are the best months to observe this species
_ Piping PloverCharadrius melodus. May-July
_ KilldeerCharadrius vociferus. Resident

Family HAEMATOPODIDAE: Oystercatchers

 _American OystercatcherHaematopus palliatus. Resident. Jan-Feb and May-Jun and Nov are the best months to observe this species

Family RECURVIROSTRIDAE: Stilts and Avocets

_ Black necked StiltHimantopus mexicanus. May- Jun; Sep
_ American AvocetRecurvirostra americana. Sep-Oct; Dec; Jun-Aug

Family SCOLOPACIDAE: Sandpipers and Allies

_ Greater YellowlegsTringa melanoleuca. Jul‑May
_ Lesser YellowlegsTringa flavipes. Resident. Apr and Jul‑Sep are the best months to observe this species.
_ Solitary SandpiperTringa solitaria. Jul-May
_ WilletCatoptrophorus semipalmatus. Resident
_ Spotted SandpiperActitus macularia. Jul‑May
_ Upland SandpiperBartramia longicauda. Aug‑Sep; Feb‑May
_ WhimbrelNumenius phaeopus. Jun‑Mar
_ Hudsonian GodwitLimosa haemastica. Sep-Oct; May
_ Marbled GodwitLimosa fedoa. Aug‑ Jun
_ Ruddy TurnstoneArenaria interpres. Common transient and fairly common winter resident with a few remaining in the summer.
_ Red KnotCalidris canutus. Apr‑May; Sep‑Oct
_ SanderlingCalidris alba. Common transient and winter resident, and rare (non‑breeding) summer visitor.
_ Semipalmated SandpiperCalidris pusilla. Fairly common spring, rare fall transient. Spring peeps are more likely this species than the Western Sandpiper. May is the best month to observe this species.
_ Western SandpiperCalidris mauri. Fairly common falland rare spring transient; uncommon winter visitor. Fall peeps are much more likely this species than
_ Least SandpiperCalidris minutilla. Jul‑May
_ White rumped SandpiperCalidris fuscicollis. May‑Jun .
_ Baird’s SandpiperCalidris bairdii. May
_ Pectoral SandpiperCalidris melanotos. Jul‑Oct; Mar‑Apr
_ Purple SandpiperCalidris maritima. Jan
_ DunlinCalidris alpina. Sep-Jun
_ Stilt SandpiperMicropalama himantopus. Aug‑Oct; Apr‑May
_ Buff breasted SandpiperTryngites subruficollis.Mar; Sep
_ RuffPhilomachus pugnax. Mar-Apr
_ Short billed DowitcherLimnodromus griseus. Fairly common transient and uncommon winter resident, occasional non‑breeders in summer.
_ Long billed DowitcherLimnodromus scolopaceus. Jan; May; Aug
_ Wilson’s(Common) SnipeGallinago delicata. Aug-Apr
_ American WoodcockScolopax minor. Resident. Apr-Mar are the best months to observe this species.
_ Wilson’s PhalaropePhalaropus tricolor. May; Aug-Sep

Family LARIDAE: Gulls and Terns

_ Parasitic JaegerStercorarius parasiticus. May-Jul; Sep; Dec
_ Laughing GullLarus atricilla. Resident
_ Bonaparte’s GullLarus philadelphia. Nov‑May; Aug-Sep
_ Ring billed GullLarus delawarensis. Resident
_ American Herring GullLarus smithsonianus. Resident
_ Iceland GullLarus glaucoides. Jan
_ Great (Greater) Black‑backed GullLarus marinus. Feb-Mar
_ Black legged KittiwakeRissa tridactyla. Dec-Jan
_ Gull billed TernSterna nilotica. Mar‑Oct.  Fairly common in Gulf County, especially at Indian Pass.
_ Caspian TernSterna caspia. Resident. Fairly common in Gulf County, especially at Indian Pass.
_ Royal TernSterna maxima. Resident
_ Sandwich TernSterna sandvicensis. Resident
_ Common TernSterna hirundo. Apr‑Nov
_ Forster’s TernSterna forsteri. Resident
_ Least TernSterna antillarum. Mar-Sep
_ Bridled TernSterna anaethetus. Apr; Jun
_ Sooty TernSterna fuscata. Jun; Aug
_ Black Tern. Chlidonias niger. Apr-Sep
_ Brown NoddyAnous stolidus. May; Aug
_ Black SkimmerRynchops niger. Resident.

Family COLUMBIDAE: Pigeons and Doves

_ Rock Dove (Pigeon)Columba livia. Res. Exotic
 Eurasian Collared‑DoveStreptopelia decaocto. Res. Exotic
_ White winged DoveZenaida asiatica. Mar-May;Oct-Jan
_ Mourning DoveZenaida macroura. Resident.
_ Common Ground DoveColumbina passerina. Resident.

Family CUCULIDAE: Cuckoos and Anis

_ Black billed CuckooCoccyzus erythropthalmus. May, Aug‑Oct
_ Yellow billed CuckooCoccyzus americanus. Apr-Oct
_ Groove billed AniCrotophaga sulcirostris. Oct‑Apr

Family TYTONIDAE: Barn Owls

_ Common Barn OwlTyto alba. Rare resident

Family STRIGIDAE: Typical Owls

_ Eastern Screech‑OwlOtus asio. Resident.
_ Great Horned OwlBubo virginianus. Resident.
_ Barred OwlStrix varia. Resident.
_ Short eared OwlAsio flammeus. Nov; Jan

Family CAPRIMULGIDAE: Nighthawks and Goatsuckers

_ Common NighthawkChordeiles minor. Mar‑Nov
_ Chuck will’s widowCaprimulgus carolinensis. Mar‑Oct
 Whip poor willCaprimulgus vociferus. Aug‑Mar

Family APODIDAE: Swifts

_ Chimney SwiftChaetura pelagica. Mar‑Nov

Family TROCHILIDAE: Hummingbirds

_ Ruby throated HummingbirdArchilochus colubris.
Mar Nov. In winter check to be sure its this species , also may be Black‑chinned Hummingbird or Rufous Hummingbird. Females of these species are difficult to separate in field.
 Black chinned Hummingbird. Archilochus alexandri. Dec-Jan
 Rufous HummingbirdSelasphorus rufus. Sep-Apr

Family ALCEDINIDAE: Kingfishers

_ Belted KingfisherCeryle alcyon. Resident. More common in the winter.

Family PICIDAE: Woodpeckers and Allies

_ Red headed WoodpeckerMelanerpes erythrocephalu­s. Resident.
_ Red bellied WoodpeckerMelanerpes carolinus. Resident.
_ Yellow bellied SapsuckerSphyrapicus varius. Oct‑Apr
_ Downy WoodpeckerPicoides pubescens. Resident.
 Hairy WoodpeckerPicoides villosus. Resident.
 Red cockaded WoodpeckerPicoides borealis. Rare resident
_ Northern (Yellow shafted) FlickerColaptes auratus. Resident.
_ Pileated WoodpeckerDryocopus pileatus. Resident.

Family TYRANNIDAE: Tyrant Flycatchers

_ Eastern Wood PeweeContopus virens. ­Apr Nov
_ Yellow-bellied Flycatcher. Empidonax flaviventris. Sep
_ Acadian FlycatcherEmpidonax virescens. Apr Sep
_ Least FlycatcherEmpidonax minimus. Oct-Nov­
_ Eastern PhoebeSayornis phoebe. Sep-Mar
_ Vermilion FlycatcherPyrocephalus rubinus. Oct Mar­
_ Great Crested FlycatcherMyiarchus crinitus. Mar Oct
_ Western KingbirdTyrannus verticalis. Apr‑May; Oct Jan
_ Eastern KingbirdTyrannus tyrannus. Mar‑Nov
_ Gray KingbirdTyrannus dominicensis. Apr‑Sep
_ Scissor tailed FlycatcherTyrannus forficatus. Aug-Dec; Apr

Family LANIIDAE: Shrikes

_ Loggerhead Shrike. Lanius ludovicianus. Resident.

Family VIREONIDAE: Vireos

_ White eyed VireoVireo griseus. Resident.
_ Yellow throated VireoVireo flavifrons. Mar Oct; Dec
_ Blue-headed (Solitary) VireoVireo solitarius. Oct  Apr
_ Philadelphia VireoVireo philadelphicus. Oct
_ Red eyed VireoVireo olivaceus. ­Mar Oct
_ Black whiskered VireoVireo altiloquus. Apr

Family CORVIDAE: Jays and Crows

_ Blue JayCyanocitta cristata. Resident.
_ American CrowCorvus brachyrhynchos. Resident.
_ Fish CrowCorvus ossifragus. Resident.

Family ALAUDIDAE: Larks

_ Horned LarkEremophila alpestris. Dec

Family HIRUNDINIDAE: Swallows

_ Purple MartinProgne subis. Feb Nov. Peak abundance in Mar and Jul-Aug.
_ Tree SwallowTachycineta bicolor. Aug May. Peak abundance in Apr and Sep.
_ Northern Rough winged Swallow.Stelgidopteryx serripennis. Resident.
_ Bank SwallowRiparia riparia. Apr-May; Aug‑Sep
_ Cliff SwallowPetrochelidon pyrrhonota. Aug‑Oct
_ Barn SwallowHirundo rustica. Resident. Peak abundance Apr‑May and Aug‑Sep.

Family PARIDAE: Titmice and Chickadees

_ Carolina ChickadeePoecile carolinensis. Resident
_ Tufted TitmouseBaeolophus bicolor. Resident

Family SITTIDAE: Nuthatches

_ Red breasted NuthatchSitta canadensis. Oct‑May
_ White breasted NuthatchSitta carolinensis. Resident. More common in north Bay County.
_ Brown headed NuthatchSitta pusilla. Resident

Family CERTHIIDAE: Creepers

_ Brown CreeperCerthia americana. Oct Feb


_ Carolina WrenThryothorus ludovicianus. Resident
 Bewick’s WrenThryomanes bewickii. Nov Feb
_ House WrenTroglodytes aedon. Sep Apr
_ Winter WrenTroglodytes troglodytes. Oct Mar
_ Sedge (Short billed Marsh) WrenCistothorus platensis. Sep May
_ Marsh (Long billed Marsh) WrenCistothorus palustris. Resident

Family REGULIDAE: Kinglets.

_ Golden crowned KingletRegulus satrapa. Oct Apr
_ Ruby crowned KingletRegulus calendula. Sep Apr

Family SYLVIIDAE: Gnatcatchers.

_ Blue gray GnatcatcherPolioptila caerulea. Resident

Family TURDIDAE: Thrushes

_ Eastern BluebirdSialia sialis. Resident
_ VeeryCatharus fuscescens. Aug-Oct; Apr May
_ Gray cheeked ThrushCatharus minimus. Aug Oct; Apr
_ Swainson’s ThrushCatharus ustulatus. Sep-Dec; Mar May
_ Hermit ThrushCatharus guttatus. Oct Apr
_ Wood ThrushHylocichla mustelina. ­Mar Oct
_ American RobinTurdus migratorius. Oct-Jun. Most abundant Nov Dec and Feb Mar. Arrive in large numbers with winter cold fronts.
_ Varied Thrush. Ixoreus naevius. Dec

Family MIMIDAE: Mockingbirds, Thrashers, and Allies

_ Gray CatbirdDumetella carolinensis. Aug Jun
_ Northern MockingbirdMimus polyglottos. Resident
_ Brown Thrasher. Toxostoma rufum. Resident

Family STURNIDAE: Starlings

_ Common (European) StarlingSturnus vulgaris. Res.Exo.


_ American (Water) PipitAnthus rubescens. Oct Mar
_ Sprague’s PipitAnthus spragueii. Dec Mar

Family BOMBYCILLIDAE: Waxwings

_ Cedar WaxwingBombycilla cedrorum. Oct MayMost frequently seen in Feb-Apr.

Family PARULIDAE: Wood Warblers

_ Blue winged WarblerVermivora pinus. Jul-Oct; Mar Apr
_ Golden winged WarblerVermivora chrysoptera. Sep Oct; Apr May
_ Tennessee WarblerVermivora peregrina. Sep Nov; Apr May
_ Orange crowned WarblerVermivora celata. Oct Apr
_ Nashville WarblerVermivora ruficapilla. Sep-Oct; May
_ Northern ParulaParula americana. Dec-Oct
_ Yellow WarblerDendroica petechia. Jul Nov; Apr May
_ Chestnut sided WarblerDendroica pensylvanica. Sep Oct; Apr
_ Magnolia WarblerDendroica magnolia. Sep-Oct; Apr May
_ Cape May WarblerDendroica tigrina. Oct; Apr
_ Black throated Blue WarblerDendroica caerulescens. Sep Oct; Apr-May
_ Yellow rumped (Myrtle) WarblerDendroica coronata. Sep May
_ Black throated Gray WarblerDendroica nigrescens. Dec
_ Black throated Green WarblerDendroica virens. Sep Jan; Apr May
_ Blackburnian WarblerDendroica fusca. Aug Nov; Mar May
_ Yellow throated WarblerDendroica dominica. Resident
_ Pine WarblerDendroica pinus. Resident
_ Prairie WarblerDendroica discolor. Resident
_ Palm WarblerDendroica palmarum. Sep Apr
_ Bay breasted WarblerDendroica castanea. Sep Oct; Apr-May
_ Blackpoll WarblerDendroica striata. Mar Jun
_ Cerulean WarblerDendroica cerulea. Sep; Apr
_ Black and white WarblerMniotilta varia. Jul May
_ American RedstartSetophaga ruticilla. Jun Oct; Apr May
_ Prothonotary WarblerProtonotaria citrea. Mar Oct
_ Worm eating WarblerHelmitheros vermivorus. Sep Oct; Mar Apr
_ Swainson’s WarblerLimnothlypis swainsonii. Apr-Aug
_ OvenbirdSeiurus aurocapillus. Sep Nov; Apr
_ Northern Waterthrush. Seiurus noveboracensis. Jul-Dec; Apr May
_ Louisiana WaterthrushSeiurus motacilla. ­Apr Oct
_ Kentucky WarblerOporornis formosus. Mar Oct
_ Mourning WarblerOporornis philadelphia. Sep; Mar
_ Common YellowthroatGeothlypis trichas. Resident
_ Hooded WarblerWilsonia citrina. Mar  Nov
_ Wilson’s WarblerWilsonia pusilla. Sep Jan
_ Canada WarblerWilsonia canadensis. Sep
_ Yellow breasted ChatIcteria virens. Apr Oct; Jan

Family THRAUPIDAE: Tanagers

_ Summer TanagerPiranga rubra. Mar Nov. Most frequently noted April and September.
_ Scarlet TanagerPiranga olivacea. Sep Oct; Mar May
_ Western TanagerPiranga ludoviciana. Feb Mar; Dec

Family EMBERIZIDAE: New World Sparrows and Allies.

_ Eastern (Rufous‑sided)Towhee. Pipilo erythrophthalmus. Resident
_ Bachman’s SparrowAimophila aestivalis. Resident. The best way to observe this elusive sparrow is to play a tape of its call.The bird will respond and come in closer. Finding it in Gulf County is easier because of its habitat requirements.
_ Chipping SparrowSpizella passerina. Sep May
_ Clay colored SparrowSpizella pallida. Oct
_ Field SparrowSpizella pusilla. Resident
_ Vesper SparrowPooecetes gramineus. Oct Apr
_ Lark Sparrow. Chondestes grammacus. Aug Nov; Jan
_ Savannah Spar

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