Crescent Lake National Wildlife Refuge
Mountain-Prairie Region

Bird List

Numerous species of waterfowl, shorebirds, and song birds find the refuge attractive during the spring and fall migration periods. Wintering populations vary widely depending on ice conditions.

Among the colorful songbirds that we enjoy each summer are “neotropical migrants.” These are birds that make a trip during our winter season to the tropical habitats found from southern Mexico to Argentina. Such birds nest in the U.S. and Canada, but spend most of the year in the neotropics - the Caribbean Islands, Mexican lowlands and Central and South America. The neotropical migrants are shown on this list with a darker background and are marked “(NT).”

If you would like a copy of this bird list in Adobe pdf format, click here (File size: 92 KB). The print on this version is rather small, but the list does fit on two sheets of standard paper, which makes it easy to take into the field with you.

The following list of 279 species of birds observed on the refuge is compiled from records beginning in 1936, with current status determined from records since 1957. Those marked with an asterisk (*) nest or have nested on the refuge. Those marked with a pound sign (#) are suspected to nest or have nested at least occasionally, but further confirmation is needed.

Crescent Lake National Wildlife Refuge Bird Checklist


a = Abundant - Common species that is numerous
c = Common - Certain to be seen or heard in suitable habitat
u = Uncommon - Present, but not certain to be seen
r = Rare - seen only a few times during a season annually
o = Occasional - Seen at intervals of 2 to 5 years
x = Accidental - seen once or more since refuge establishment
* = Species that nests on the Refuge

Darker background = Neotropical migrant

  (Mar - May)

  (Jun - Aug)

  (Sep - Nov)

  (Dec - Feb)

Herons | Waterfowl | Hawks | Rails | Shorebirds | Gulls | Owls | Woodpeckers.
Flycatchers | Swallows | Wrens | Thrushes | Warblers | Sparrows | Finches | Bottom
Common Name S s F W
Loons Legend
Common Loon o     o
Grebes Legend
Pied-billed Grebe * c c c  
Horned Grebe u o u  
Eared Grebe * c c c  
Western Grebe * c c c  
Pelicans Legend
American White Pelican c u c  
Cormorants Legend
Double-crested Cormorant * c c c  
Herons and Bitterns Legend
American Bittern * c c u  
Least Bittern   r    
Great Blue Heron * c u c  
Great Egret o o o  
Snowy Egret o o o  
Little Blue Heron   x    
Cattle Egret o o o  
Green Heron o o    
Black-crowned Night Heron * c c c  
Yellow-crowned Night Heron   x    
Ibises Legend
White-faced Ibis * o o o  
Vultures Legend
Turkey Vulture r o r  
Swans, Geese, and Ducks Legend
Trumpeter Swan * r r r r
Tundra Swan o   o  
Greater White-fronted Goose o   r o
Snow Goose u   u  
Ross's Goose o   o  
Brant     x  
Canada Goose * c c c c
Wood Duck # r r r  
Green-winged Teal * c u c  
American Black Duck   x x  
Mallard * a c a o
Gadwall * c c c  
American Wigeon * u r u o
Blue-winged Teal * a a a  
Cinnamon Teal * r r o  
Northern Shoveler * a c a  
Northern Pintail * c u c  
Canvasback * c u c o
Redhead * c u c o
Ring-necked Duck u o u o
Greater Scaup o      
Lesser Scaup * c u c o
Surf Scoter     x  
White-winged Scoter     x  
Long-tail Duck x      
Bufflehead c o c o
Common Goldeneye u o u o
Barrow's Goldeneye x      
Hooded Merganser r o r  
Common Merganser u o u o
Red-breasted Merganser r   r  
Ruddy Duck * c c c o
Hawks and Eagles Legend
Osprey o o r  
Bald Eagle * r r r r
Northern Harrier * c u c o
Sharp-shinned Hawk u o u o
Cooper's Hawk u o u  
Northern Goshawk r   o  
Red-shouldered Hawk     x  
Broad-winged Hawk   (NT) r   o  
Swainson's Hawk *   (NT) u u u  
Red-tailed Hawk * u u u  
Rough-legged Hawk u   u u
Ferruginous Hawk # r o r  
Golden Eagle r r r r
Falcons Legend
American Kestrel * r r u o
Merlin   (NT) o   r r
Peregrine Falcon   (NT) r o r  
Gyrfalcon x     x
Prairie Falcon r r u o
Upland Game Birds Legend
Ring-necked Pheasant * c c c c
Sharp-tailed Grouse * c c c c
Greater Prairie Chicken o o o o
Northern Bobwhite o o o o
Rails and Coots Legend
Black Rail x x    
Virginia Rail * c c c  
Sora * c c c  
American Coot * c c c o
Cranes Legend
Sandhill Crane r   r  
Shorebirds Legend
Black-bellied Plover r o r  
American Golden Plover o   o  
Semipalmated Plover o r r  
Piping Plover   x    
Killdeer * a c a o
Black-necked Stilt * o o    
American Avocet * c c c  
Greater Yellowlegs u u u  
Lesser Yellowlegs c u u  
Solitary Sandpiper u u r  
Willet * u u o  
Spotted Sandpiper #   (NT) r r r  
Upland Sandpiper *   (NT) c c o  
Whimbrel x      
Long-billed Curlew *   (NT) c c o  
Hudsonian Godwit x      
Marbled Godwit r r o  
Red Knot x      
Sanderling r   o  
Semipalmated Sandpiper r r r  
Western Sandpiper o r r  
Least Sandpiper u r u  
White-rumped Sandpiper o      
Baird's Sandpiper c c u  
Pectoral Sandpiper u u u  
Dunlin o o o  
Stilt Sandpiper u u u  
Short-billed Dowitcher   x    
Long-billed Dowitcher c u c  
Common Snipe * u r u  
Wilson's Phalarope * a c c  
Red-necked Phalarope r r r  
Gulls and Terns Legend
Franklin's Gull u u c  
Bonaparte's Gull r   r  
Ring-billed Gull c u c o
California Gull x      
Herring Gull r   r o
Glaucous Gull x      
Sabine's Gull     x  
Caspian Tern x      
Common Tern o o o  
Forster's Tern * c c u  
Least Tern   x    
Black Tern * c c c  
Doves Legend
Rock Dove x      
Mourning Dove * a a c  
Cuckoos and Roadrunners Legend
Black-billed Cuckoo #   (NT) o o    
Yellow-billed Cuckoo *   (NT) r r r  
Owls Legend
Barn Owl * u u u o
Eastern Screech Owl * r r r r
Great Horned Owl * u u u u
Snowy Owl     o o
Burrowing Owl *   (NT) o o o  
Long-eared Owl     o x
Short-eared Owl * r r r r
Northern Saw-whet Owl     x  
Nighthawks and Nightjars Legend
Common Nighthawk *   (NT) c c c  
Common Poorwill o o    
Swifts Legend
Chimney Swift   (NT) o o    
Hummingbirds Legend
Hummingbird (species)   (NT)   o    
Kingfishers Legend
Belted Kingfisher r r r  
Woodpeckers Legend
Red-Headed Woodpecker * r o r  
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker o   o  
Downy Woodpecker * u u u r
Hairy Woodpecker o   o o
Northern Flicker * u u u r
Flycatchers Legend
Olive-sided Flycatcher   (NT) o   o  
Western Wood Pewee #   (NT) u u u  
Eastern Wood Pewee   (NT)   o    
Willow Flycatcher   (NT) r r r  
Least Flycatcher   (NT) c r r  
Cordilleran Flycatcher   (NT)     o  
Eastern Phoebe o o    
Say's Phoebe # u o u  
Great Crested Flycatcher o o    
Cassin's Kingbird     x  
Western Kingbird *   (NT) c c c  
Eastern Kingbird *   (NT) c c c  
Shrikes Legend
Loggerhead Shrike * c c c  
Northern Shrike u   u u
Vireos Legend
Bell's Vireo *   (NT) o o    
Solitary Vireo   (NT) o o o  
Warbling Vireo *   (NT) u r u  
Philadelphia Vireo   (NT) x   x  
Red-eyed Vireo   (NT) o o o  
Jays, Magpies and Crows Legend
Gray Jay x      
Blue Jay * u u u  
Pinyon Jay     x  
Black-billed Magpie o o o o
American Crow r o r r
Larks Legend
Horned Lark * c c c c
Swallows Legend
Purple Martin   (NT) o o    
Tree Swallow * u u r  
Violet-green Swallow   (NT)   x    
Northern Rough-winged Swallow #   (NT) u u r  
Bank Swallow   (NT) c a a  
Cliff Swallow *   (NT) u r    
Barn Swallow *   (NT) a a a  
Chickadees and Titmice Legend
Black-capped Chickadee o o r o
Nuthatches Legend
Red-breasted Nuthatch r r r  
White-breasted Nuthatch o o o x
Creepers Legend
Brown Creeper o   o x
Wrens Legend
Rock Wren r   r  
House Wren * u u u  
Marsh Wren * a a c  
Kinglets, Bluebirds, and Thrushes Legend
Golden-crowned Kinglet o   o  
Ruby-crowned Kinglet u   o  
Eastern Bluebird o o o  
Mountain Bluebird u   u o
Townsend's Solitaire r   r o
Veery o o o  
Gray-cheeked Thrush o      
Swainson's Thrush c u u  
Hermit Thrush o   o  
Wood Thrush o o    
American Robin * c c c u
Varied Thrush     x  
Mimics Legend
Gray Catbird   (NT) u r u  
Northern Mockingbird r o r  
Sage Thrasher   x    
Brown Thrasher * u u u  
Starlings Legend
European Starling * r u u r
Pipits Legend
American Pipit r   r  
Waxwings Legend
Bohemian Waxwing o   o o
Cedar Waxwing r r r o
Warblers Legend
Tennessee Warbler   (NT) o x    
Orange-crowned Warbler   (NT) u   u  
Northern Parula Warbler   (NT) o x    
Yellow Warbler *   (NT) u u u  
Magnolia Warbler   (NT) o   o  
Black-throated Blue Warbler   (NT)     o  
Yellow-rumped Warbler c o u  
Townsend's Warbler   (NT) o o o  
Black-throated Green Warbler   (NT)   x   x
Blackburnian Warbler   (NT) x      
Bay-breasted Warbler   (NT) x      
Blackpoll Warbler   (NT) u r u  
Black and White Warbler   (NT) o r r  
American Redstart   (NT) u u u  
Worm-eating Warbler   (NT) o      
Ovenbird   (NT) u r u  
Northern Waterthrush   (NT) o o o  
MacGillivray's Warbler   (NT) o o o  
Common Yellowthroat *   (NT) a a c  
Wilson's Warbler   (NT) u u u  
Yellow-breasted Chat   (NT) r o o  
Tanagers Legend
Scarlet Tanager   (NT)   x x  
Western Tanager   (NT) o o    
Sparrows, Buntings, and Grosbeaks Legend
Green-tailed Towhee   (NT) x      
Western Towhee u   u  
Cassin's Sparrow x      
American Tree Sparrow u   r r
Chipping Sparrow   (NT) u r r  
Clay-colored Sparrow   (NT) r r r  
Brewer's Sparrow   (NT) x      
Field Sparrow r   r  
Vesper Sparrow * r r r  
Lark Sparrow *   (NT) c c c  
Lark Bunting *   (NT) r r r  
Savannah Sparrow # u r u  
Baird's Sparrow   (NT) x   x  
Grasshopper Sparrow *   (NT) a a a  
Fox Sparrow     x  
Song Sparrow r r r r
Lincoln's Sparrow   (NT) r   r  
Swamp Sparrow * r r r  
White-throated Sparrow r o r  
Harris' Sparrow r   r  
White-crowned Sparrow c   u  
Dark-eyed Junco u   c u
McCown's Longspur o   o  
Lapland Longspur r   r o
Chestnut-collared Longspur r   r  
Snow Bunting o     o
Lazuli Bunting   (NT) r r r  
Indigo Bunting   (NT) x      
Northern Cardinal x   x x
Rose-breasted Grosbeak   (NT) o o    
Black-headed Grosbeak   (NT) u u    
Blue Grosbeak *   (NT) r r o  
Evening Grosbeak o   o o
Dickcissel *   (NT)   r    
Blackbirds and Orioles Legend
Bobolink *   (NT) u u r  
Red-winged Blackbird * a a a r
Eastern Meadowlark * u u u  
Western Meadowlark * a a a o
Yellow-headed Blackbird *   (NT) a a a x
Rusty Blackbird x      
Brewer's Blackbird o   o  
Common Grackle * c c c o
Brown-headed Cowbird * c c u  
Orchard Oriole *   (NT) c c    
Baltimore Oriole o o o  
Bullock's Oriole * u u r  
Finches Legend
Purple Finch o   o  
Cassin's Finch   x    
Red Crossbill     o  
Common Redpoll o     o
Pine Siskin o o r o
American Goldfinch * u u u o
Old World Sparrows Legend
House Sparrow * o o o o
Last updated: March 21, 2011