Bird Checklist

red-winged blackbird perched on a branch above a marsh
Red-winged blackbird

NPS Photo / Scott Sharaga

Birds of the Big Thicket

This bird checklist shows the abundance, seasons, and habitat of each bird known to inhabit the Big Thicket region.

► Download a printable copy of the bird checklist

Guide to Checklist Symbols

Abundance

The occurrence of some species varies significantly from north to south within the preserve area, and the occurrences shown assume that all areas of the preserve were visited.

A – Abundant: A common species which is very numerous.
C – Common: Certain to be seen in suitable habitat.
U – Uncommon: Present, but not certain to be seen.
R – Rare: Seen at intervals of 2 to 5 per year.
* Nests in the preserve or vicinity.

Seasons

Some species may be present for only a short period within the indicated season.

SP – Spring
SU – Summer
FA – Fall
WI – Winter

Habitats

AE – Aerial
F – Mixed hardwood forests
GR – Grassland
M – Marshes, wet edges
O – Open areas
PI – Upland pine
S – Shorelines
TH – Thickets
OW – Open water (oxbows, bayous, swamps, streams, reservoirs)

 

Bird Species Navigation

 

Swans, Geese, and Ducks

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Greater white-fronted goose U OW, GR
Snow goose R AE, O
Canada goose R AE, O
Wood duck* C C C C OW
Gadwall U OW
American wigeon U/C OW
Mallard R R OW
Mottled duck* R R R R OW, S
Blue-winged teal R R R OW, S
Northern shoveler R R C OW
Green-winged teal U/C OW
Canvasback C OW
Redhead C C U OW
Ring-necked duck U/C OW
Lesser scaup C OW
Bufflehead R OW
Hooded merganser C OW
Ruddy duck R C OW

Pheasants, Turkeys, and Quail

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Northern bobwhite* R R R R TH

Grebes

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Pied-billed grebe* U U U OW
Horned grebe R OW
Eared grebe C U OW, M

Storks

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Wood stork R R S

Cormorants

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Double-crested cormorant* C R A OW

Anhinga

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Anhinga* U/C C U/C U/C OW

Pelicans

SP SU FA WI Habitat
American white pelican U R U C OW

Bitterns and Herons

SP SU FA WI Habitat
American bittern R R R S
Least bittern* R M
Great blue heron* C C C C S
Great egret* C C C C S
Snowy egret* C C C C S
Little blue heron* C C U/C U/C S
Tricolored heron* R R R R S
Cattle egret C C C O, S
Green heron* C C U/C M, S
Black-crowned night heron U/C S
Yellow-crowned night heron C C U/C S

Ibises

SP SU FA WI Habitat
White ibis* U/C U/C U/C C S

Vultures

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Black vulture* A A A A AE, O
Turkey vulture* A A A A AE, O

Kites, Eagles, and Hawks

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Osprey U U C S
American swallow-tailed kite* U/C U/C AE, OW
White-tailed kite R O, GR
Mississippi kite R R R AE
Bald eagle R C AE, OW
Northern harrier C GR
Sharp-shinned hawk U U U F, PI
Cooper's hawk* R R R U F, PI
Red-shouldered hawk* C C C C AE, F
Broad-winged hawk U U U AE, PI
Swainson's hawk C U U GR, O
Red-tailed hawk U R U C AE, O

Falcons

SP SU FA WI Habitat
American kestrel R U C O
Merlin R F, PI

Rails, Gallinules, and Coots

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Common gallinule R M
American coot U/C R U/C A OW, M

Plovers

SP SU FA WI Habitat
American golden-plover R M
Killdeer* C C C A O, S

Sandpipers and Phalaropes

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Spotted sandpiper U S
Greater yellowlegs C R U C M, GR
Upland sandpiper R R GR
Wilson's snipe R R U M, TH
American woodcock R R U F, PI

Gulls and Terns

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Bonaparte's gull R OW
Franklin's gull R R OW
Northern pintail U OW, M
Ring-billed gull R OW
Herring gull R OW
Caspian tern U OW
Black tern U U OW
Forster's tern U U U C OW

Pigeons and Doves

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Rock pigeon C C C C O
Eurasian collared-dove U U U U O
White-winged dove U U U U O
Mourning dove* A A A A O, TH
Inca dove* R R R R O

Cuckoos

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Yellow-billed cuckoo* C C C PI, F

Roadrunners

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Greater roadrunner* U U U U TH

Owls

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Eastern screech owl* C C C C PI, F
Great horned owl* U U U U PI, O
Barred owl* C C C C F

Goatsuckers

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Common nighthawk* U U U AE, O
Chuck-will's widow* R R R AE, O

Swifts

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Chimney swift* A A A AE

Hummingbirds

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Ruby-throated hummingbird* C C F, TH
Rufous hummingbird R R F, TH

Kingfishers

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Belted kingfisher* C U C C OW

Woodpeckers

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Red-headed woodpecker* C C C C O, F
Red-bellied woodpecker* A A A A PI, F
Yellow-bellied sapsucker R R A F, PI
Downy woodpecker* A A A A F, PI
Hairy woodpecker* U U U U F, PI
Northern flicker* C R C C PI, O
Pileated woodpecker C C C C F, PI

Flycatchers

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Olive-sided flycatcher U U PI, TH, F
Eastern wood pewee* C U C F, PI
Yellow-bellied flycatcher R R F
Acadian flycatcher* C C C F
Eastern phoebe C C C TH, W
Vermilion flycatcher R
Great crested flycatcher* C C U PI, F
Eastern kingbird U U U O
Scissor-tailed flycatcher R U R O

Shrikes

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Loggerhead shrike* R R R U O

Vireos

SP SU FA WI Habitat
White-eyed vireo* A A A R TH
Yellow-throated vireo* A A C PI, F
Blue-headed vireo U U C F, PI
Warbling vireo R R R F
Philadelphia vireo R O
Red-eyed vireo* A A A F, PI

Jays and Crows

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Blue jay* A A A A PI, F
American crow* A A A A F, PI
Fish crow* C C C C S

Swallows

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Purple martin* A A R AE, O
Tree swallow* R R U AE, OW
Northern rough-winged swallow U U AE, OW
Bank swallow U U AE, OW
Cliff swallow R R AE, OW
Barn swallow* U U U AE

Chickadees and Titmice

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Carolina chickadee* A A A A PI, F
Tufted titmouse* A A A A F, PI

Nuthatches and Creepers

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Red-breasted nuthatch R R R PI
White-breasted nuthatch* R R R R F
Brown-headed nuthatch* C C C C PI
Brown creeper U R U F, PI

Wrens

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Carolina wren* A A A A F, PI
House wren U U U TH
Winter wren R R R F, TH
Sedge wren R R U M, GR

Kinglets and Gnatcatchers

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Blue-gray gnatcatcher* C U C C R, PI
Golden-crowned kinglet U U C F, PI
Ruby-crowned kinglet C C A F, PI

Thrushes

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Eastern bluebird* C C C A O
Veery R F, TH
Gray-cheeked thrush R R F, PI
Swainson's thrush R R F, PI
Hermit thrush R C F, PI
Wood thrush* U U U R PI, F
American robin* C U C A O, TH

Mimic Thrushes

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Gray catbird* U U U TH
Northern mockingbird* A A A A O, TH
Brown thrasher* C C C TH

Starlings

SP SU FA WI Habitat
European starling* U U U U O

Pipits and Wagtails

SP SU FA WI Habitat
American pipit R M

Waxwings

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Cedar waxwing U C PI, F

Warblers

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Ovenbird U U PI, F
Worm-eating warbler* U R U PI, F
Louisiana waterthrush* U U U F, S
Northern waterthrush R R TH, S
Black-and-white warbler* U C U R PI, F
Blue-winged warbler R TH
Prothonotary warbler* C C C F
Swainson's warbler* C C C F
Orange-crowned warbler U R C F, TH
Kentucky warbler* U C U PI, F
Common yellowthroat* U U U U TH, S
Hooded warbler C A C F, TH
American redstart* U R U R F
Northern parula warbler* A A R F, PI
Magnolia warbler U R F, PI
Bay-breasted warbler R F, PI
Blackburnian warbler R F, TH
Yellow warbler R R R M, TH
Chestnut-sided warbler R F, PI
Blackpoll warbler R F, PI
Palm warbler R M, TH
Pine warbler* A A A A PI
Yellow-rumped Myrtle warbler A C A TH
Yellow-throated warbler* C C U F, PI
Prairie warbler* U C R TH
Black-throated green warbler R R PI
Wilson's warbler R R R TH
Yellow breasted chat* C C U TH

Sparrows

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Eastern towhee U U U TH
Bachman's sparrow* U U R PI
Chipping sparrow* C U U A PI
Field sparrow C TH
Vesper sparrow R GR
Lark sparrow R GR
Savannah sparrow R R GR
Grasshopper sparrow R GR
Henslow's sparrow R GR
LeConte's sparrow R GR
Fox sparrow U TH, F
Song sparrow C TH, S
Lincoln's sparrow U TH
Swamp sparrow C S, TH
White-throated sparrow A A PI, TH
White-crowned sparrow R R F, TH
Dark-eyed slate-colored junco C PI

Tanagers

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Summer tanager* C C C PI, F
Scarlet tanager R F

Cardinals and Grosbeaks

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Northern cardinal* A A A A TH
Rose-breasted grosbeak R TH
Blue grosbeak* U C U TH
Indigo bunting* C C C TH
Painted bunting* U C U U TH

Blackbirds

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Red-winged blackbird* C C C C S, O
Eastern meadowlark* C C C C GR
Rusty blackbird R M
Brewer's blackbird R O
Common grackle* C C C C O
Great-tailed grackle U U U U O
Brown-headed cowbird* C C C C O
Orchard oriole* U U U O, TH
Baltimore oriole U U OW

Finches

SP SU FA WI Habitat
Purple finch U F, PI
House finch U U U U
Pine siskin U PI, F, TH
American goldfinch C C A PI, F
Evening grosbeak R R PI, F

Weaver Finches

SP SU FA WI Habitat
House sparrow* U U U U O
 

Last updated: May 8, 2021

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