ABA Checklist

The ABA Checklist includes ABA-area breeding species, regular visitors, and casual and accidental species from other regions that are believed to have strayed here without direct human aid, and well-established introduced species that are now part of our avifauna. Species Total: 1116

Version 8.0.6a* – December 2019

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Adds four new species: Stejneger’s Scoter (Melanitta stejnegeri), Code 4; Dark-billed Cuckoo (Coccyzus melacoryphus), Code 5; Long-legged Buzzard (Buteo rufinus), Code 5; Yellow-chevroned Parakeet (Brotogeris chiriri), Code 2. —Details in the ABA Checklist Committee Report >>
Incorporates taxonomic changes by the North American Classification Committee of the AOS (Chesser et al. 2019)Details at the ABA Blog >>
*- version “a” fixes some typographic and version errors.

Version 8.0.5 – December 2018

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Incorporates AOS Taxonomic changes. Details in Birder’s Guide >>

Version 8.0.4 – August 2018

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Adds Black-backed Oriole. Details at the ABA Blog >>

Version 8.0.3 – August 2018

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Mid-year update adds four new species: Great Black Hawk, Red-backed Shrike, Pied Wheatear, and Mistle Thrush. Details at the ABA Blog >>

Version 8.0.2 – May 2018

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Mid-year update adds four new species: Indian Peafowl, European Robin, Thick-billed Warbler, and River Warbler. Details at the ABA Blog >>

Version 8.0.1 – November 2017

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In version 8.0 there are 105 species added due last year’s inclusion of Hawaii in the ABA Area–33 of which are ABA  rarity code 6. Also added are 4 vagrants accepted by the Checklist Committee: Common Shelduck, Amethyst-throated Hummingbird, Pine Flycatcher, and Cuban Vireo, as well as one added (Cassia Crossbill) and one subtracted (Thayer’s Gull) based on AOS taxonomic decisions. This results in a total number species on the checklist of 1103*.

  • * Version 8.0.1 corrects some typos, formatting errors, and an omission. If you downloaded V8, please re-download this latest version. 

Version 7.9.0 – July 2016

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Incorporating AOU Checklist changes in the 2016 “Check-list Supplement” by the American Ornithologists’ Union’s Committee on Classification and Nomenclature of North and Middle American Birds (NACC). Added: Red-legged Honeycreeper, Townsend’s Storm-Petrel (split from Leach’s Storm-Petrel); California Scrub-Jay and Woodhouse’s Scrub-Jay (Western Scrub-Jay split).
Details at the ABA Blog >>

Version 7.8.2 – May 2016

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Added: Common Scoter, Blythe’s Reed-Warbler, and Pallas’s Rosefinch. Removed Budgerigar.
Details at the ABA Blog >>

Version 7.8.1 – November 2015

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Various typographical and clerical errors corrected.

Version 7.8 – August 2015

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Incorporating AOU Checklist changes in the 2015 “Check-list Supplement” by the American Ornithologists’ Union’s Committee on Classification and Nomenclature of North and Middle American Birds (NACC). Details at the ABA Blog >>

Version 7.7.1 – June 2015

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Added Rufous-necked Wood-Rail.

Version 7.7 – September 2014

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Added Egyptian Goose and Common Redstart.

Version 7.6 – July 2014

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At the ABA Blog:

2014 AOU Check-list Supplement is Out!


Version 7.5 – December 2013

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At the ABA Blog:

2013 AOU Check-List Changes
2013 AOU Check-list Committee Proposals: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3


Version 7.4 – December 2012

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At the ABA Blog:

5+2 Bird Species Added to ABA Checklist!


Version 7.3 – November 2011

More Information here

Added: Sungrebe (Heliornis fulica)
Code: 5.
Placement: after American Coot.

Comments: A female in unworn plumage was detected at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, Socorro County, New Mexico, 13–18 November 2008. The bird was discovered and photographed by Sally King with Ernesto Burciaga, and identified and seen by others subsequently (Williams et al. 2009).


Version 7.2 – November 2010

More Information here

Added: Bare-throated Tiger-Heron (Tigrisoma mexicanum)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Least Bittern.

Comments: One thought to be in second-basic plumage at Bentsen–Rio Grande Valley State Park, Hidalgo County, Texas, from 21 December 2009 to 20 January 2010. Discovered and photographed by Rick Nirschl and Rick Snider, and observed by hundreds during its month-long stay (Nirschl and Snider 2010).

Added: Solitary Snipe (Gallinago solitaria)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Jack Snipe.

Comments: One near Alexai Point, Attu Island, Alaska, on 24 May 2010. Discovered and photographed by a group from Zugunruhe Birding Tours led by John Puschock, then collected by Jack J. Withrow and David W. Sonneborn (Withrow and Sonneborn in preparation) and determined to be an adult male and thought to be of the subspecies G. s. japonica.

Added: Amazon Kingfisher (Chloroceryle amazona)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Belted Kingfisher.

Comments: One female along the Rio Grande at Laredo, Webb County, Texas, from 24 January to 3 February 2010. Although the bird was stated in the documentation submitted to the TBRC to be an adult, we are not aware of the characters that were used to age the bird. Discovered and photographed by Robert Epstein and Alan Wormington, and observed by hundreds during its stay (Wormington and Epstein 2010).

Added: Gray-collared Becard (Pachyramphus major)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Fork-tailed Flycatcher.

Comments: One second-calendar-year male attaining adult plumage at Cave Creek Canyon, Cochise County, Arizona, on 5 June 2009. Discovered and photographed by Anne Pellegrini, Jillian Johnston, and Ryan Davis, and observed by others later that day (Johnston et al. 2010).

Added: Brown-backed Solitaire (Myadestes occidentalis)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Townsend’s Solitaire.

Comments: Two records thought to refer to the same individual. One male at Miller Canyon, Cochise County, Arizona, was discovered and photographed by Benjamin Van Doren, Dave Jasper, and other participants in Camp Chiricahua on 16 July 2009 (Van Doren 2010). Presumably the same individual then traveled 2.7 miles to Ramsey Canyon, Cochise County, Arizona, where it was present 18 July–1 August 2009 (Van Doren 2010). Discovered by Sandy Kunzer and Rick Romea, photographed by Joe Woodley and others, and audio-recorded by Chris Benesh and Dave Stejskal.

Added: Rufous-tailed Robin (Luscinia sibilans)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Spotted Flycatcher.

Comments: Two singles. One second-year female at West Massacre Valley, Attu Island, Alaska, on 4 June 2008. Discovered and collected by David Sonneborn and Jack Withrow, the specimen was deposited in the collection at the University of Alaska Museum of the North (UAM 24600), where the identification was confirmed by Daniel Gibson (DeCicco et al. 2009). Another secondyear bird was found four days later, at Northeast Point, St. Paul Island, Alaska, on 8–9 June 2008. Discovered by Lucas DeCicco, and observed and photographed by several others the following day (DeCicco et al. 2009).

Added: Red-legged Thrush (Turdus plumbeus)
Code: 5.
Placement: after American Robin.

Comments: One adult at Maritime Hammock Sanctuary, Melbourne Beach, Brevard County, Florida, on 31 May 2010. Discovered and photographed by Marcus Ponce and not observed again (Anderson and Ponce in preparation).

Added: Mexican Whip-poor-will (Caprimulgus arizonae)
Code: 1.

Comments: split from Whip-poor-will (Caprimulgus vociferus) by the AOU in its 51st supplement to the check-list. See The Auk 127:726-744, 2010. Caprimulgus vociferus now becomes Eastern Whip-poor-will.

Added: Pacific Wren (Troglodytes pacificus)
Code: 1.

Comments: split from Winter Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes) by the AOU in its 51st supplement to the check-list. See The Auk 127:726-744, 2010. The Old World species, thought likely to form four distinct groups, becomes the Eurasian Wren (T. troglodytes) and is extralimital. Of the two newly split North American species, the eastern birds (breeding west to Alberta) remain the Winter Wren (Troglodytes hiemalis) while the species breeding from Alaska to the Pacific region (some breeding sparingly elsewhere in the mountain ranges of western North America) becomes the Pacific Wren (Troglodytes pacificus).


Version 7.1 – November 2009

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Added: Swinhoe’s Storm-Petrel (Oceanodroma monorhis)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Band-rumped Storm-Petrel.

Comments: One individual, thought to be a juvenile in slightly worn plumage, in the Atlantic Ocean at approximately 65 kilometers east-southeast of Hatteras Inlet, Cape Hatteras, North Carolina on 2 June 2008. Discovered and well-photographed by J. Brian Patteson, Steve N. G. Howell, and others on an organized pelagic trip (Patteson et al. 2009).

Added: White-crested Elaenia (Elaenia albiceps)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Greenish Elaenia.

Comments: One calling individual at South Padre Island, Texas on 9–10 February 2008. Found by Daniel Jones and observed, photographed, and audiorecorded by Martin Reid and several others. Identified as an Elaenia by its crest and conspicuous white coronal patch, identified to species by plumage and vocalizations, and identified as the migratory subspecies E. a. chilensis by vocalizations and photographic analysis of plumage and wing formula (Reid and Jones 2009).

Added: Crowned Slaty-Flycatcher (Empidonomus aurantioatrocristatus)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Variegated Flycatcher.

Comments: One adult male photographed alive and then collected at Peveto Beach Woods, Cameron Parish, Louisiana on 3 June 2008. The bird was observed alive solely by Paul Conover and Buford Myers. Identified by its size; pale gray face and underparts with a yellowish tinge to the vent and undertail coverts; gray-brown back and wing coverts; blackish lores, eye patch, and auriculars separated from the blackish crown by a gray supercilium; and blackish soft parts. The specimen, prepared as a study skin (LSUMNS #180361 at Louisiana State University Museum of Natural Science), was heavily worn with no molt, and had accumulated heavy fat deposits.

Added: Sinaloa Wren (Thryothorus sinaloa)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Canyon Wren.

Comments: One singing individual, presumably an adult, at an elevation of 4,000 feet at Patagonia–Sonoita Creek Preserve, Santa Cruz County, Arizona found on 25 August 2008 and present into August 2009. Discovered and photographed by Matt Brown and Robin Baxter, and observed, photographed, and audio-recorded by many others (no formal paper published through August 2009). Distinguished from other medium-sized wrens by its rich, varied, warbling song; moderate black streaking on the auriculars and neck; brown back contrasting with rusty tail; and plain underparts with gray breast. Distinguished from the similar Happy Wren (T. felix), a potential stray to the ABA Area from northwestern Mexico, by voice, barring on wing coverts, and pale (rather than buffy) underparts (Howell and Webb 1995).

Removed: Caribbean Elaenia (Elaenia martinica)

Comments: The ABA Checklist Committee accepted Caribbean Elaenia in 1985, but admitted that the identification represented a “borderline case.” Although the elaenia vocalized frequently, its calls were not audio-recorded. Because the Florida Ornithological Society Records Committee recently downgraded this record to “Elaenia species,” the ABA Checklist Committee also reevaluated the record and decided that the lack of audio–recordings left doubt as to its specific identity. Ironically, this bird may have been a White–crested Elaenia, which was added to the ABA Checklist based on a recent Texas record.


Version 7.0 – November 2008

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Added: Graylag Goose (Anser anser)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Pink-footed Goose.

Comments: one bird was found alive on a stationary ship in the Atlantic Ocean off the coasts of Newfoundland and Labrador from spring, 2005.

Added: White-chinned Petrel (Procellaria aequinoctialis)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Bulwer’s Petrel.

Comments: a moribund individual was discovered near Rollover Pass, Texas, in April 1986 where it was originally misidentified.

Added: Townsend’s Shearwater (Puffinus auricularis)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Manx Shearwater.

Comments: an individual from near Del Mar, California, was caught and taken to be rehabilitated in August 2007, where measurements and photographs were used for positive identification.

Added: Tristram’s Storm-Petrel (Oceanodroma tristrami)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Black Storm-Petrel.

Comments: an individual caught during night mist-netting from Southeast Farallon Island, California, in April, 2006. Proper identification resulted after careful measurements were taken, in addition to comparisons with museum specimens of congeners.

Added: Brown Hawk-Owl (Ninox scutulata)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Northern Saw-whet Owl.

Comments: two birds, the first from St. Paul Island, Pribilof Islands, Alaska, from late August – early September 2007 was well-photographed and easy to identify.

Added: Loggerhead Kingbird (Tyrannus caudifasciatus)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Gray Kingbird.

Comments: two birds, the first from Fort Zachary Taylor State Park, Key West, Florida, in March 2007 was added to the Checklist shortly after the species had been removed from the List due to uncertain identification difficulties.

Added: Sedge Warbler (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Lanceolated Warbler.

Comments: an individual from Gambell, St. Lawrence Island, Alaska, in September 2007. Photographs ruled out look-alike congeners.

Added: Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Redwing.

Comments: an individual found at a private residence at Saint-Fulgence, Quebec, Canada, in November 2006 was photographed and identified.

Added: Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis)
Code: 2.
Placement: after European Starling.

Comments: now considered an established exotic in parts of Florida.

Added: Yellow-browed Bunting (Emberiza chrysophrys)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Little Bunting.

Comments: an individual was photographed at Gambell, St. Lawrenece Island, Alaska, on 15 September 2007. It was easily separated from other Old World Buntings using a series of convincing photographs.


Version 6.8 – November 2007

More Information Here

Added: Light-mantled Albatross (Phoebetria palpebrata)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Black-browed Albatross.

Comments: one adult in the Pacific Ocean at Cordell Bank, 40 miles off Point Reyes, Marin County, California, on 17 July 1994.

Added: Parkinson’s Petrel (Procellaria parkinsoni)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Bulwer’s Petrel.

Comments: one individual in the Pacific Ocean near Cordell Bank, 17.6 nautical miles northwest of the Point Reyes headlands, Marin County, California, on 1 October 2005.

Added: Gray Heron (Ardea cinerea)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Great Blue Heron.

Comments: one individual found moribund at Lear’s Cove, Newfoundland & Labrador, on 11 October 1996 was sent to Salmonier Nature Park, where it died.

Added: Intermediate Egret (Mesophoyx intermedia)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Great Egret.

Comments: one recently dead adult male in nuptial plumage salvaged by Stephan Lorenz and colleagues at Buldir Island, Aleutian Islands, Alaska, on 30 May 2006.

Added: Swallow-tailed Gull (Creagrus furcatus)
Code: 5.
Placement: provisionally placed after Sabine’s Gull.

Comments: one adult in alternate plumage discovered by Alan Baldridge at Pacific Grove, Monterey County, California, on 6-7 June 1985, then rediscovered by Ed Harper and others 15 miles north, at Jetty Road State Park, Moss Landing on 8 June 1985.

Added: European Turtle-Dove (Streptopelia turtur)
Code: 5.
Placement: placed after Oriental Turtle-Dove.

Comments: three records of singles: one photographed at Lower Matecumbe Key, Monroe County, Florida, 9-11 April 1990, a record that was relegated to the CLC’s short-lived “Origin Uncertain” list; one photographed inhand at St. Pierre, St. Pierre Island, France, sometime between 15-20 May 2001; and one thought to be of the nominate race that was run over by a vehicle at Tuckernuck Island, Nantucket County, Massachusetts, on 19 July 2001.

Added: Pallas’s Leaf-Warbler (Phylloscopus proregulus)
Code: 5.
Placement: provisionally placed after Yellow-browed Warbler.

Comments: one of the nominate race at the “Circular Boneyard” at Gambell, St. Lawrence Island, Alaska, on 25-26 September 2006 was discovered and photographed by Paul Lehman and Gary Rosenberg.

Added: Tundra Bean-Goose (Anser serrirostris)

Comments: split from Bean Goose (Anser fabalis) by the AOU in its 48th supplement to the check-list. See The Auk 124(3):1109-1115, 2007. Anser fabalis now becomes Taiga Bean-Goose.


Version 6.7 – February 2007

More Information Here

Added: Ringed Storm-Petrel (Oceanodroma hornbyi)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Fork-tailed Storm-Petrel.

Comments: one individual, 2 August 2005, about 12 nautical miles off the westernmost point of San Miguel Island, Santa Barbara County, California.

Added: Red-footed Falcon (Falco vespertinus)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Eurasian Hobby.

Comments: one second-calendar-year (first-summer) male, 7 or 8-24 August 2004, at Katama Airfield, Martha’s Vineyard, Dukes County, Massachusetts.

Added: Sooty Grouse (Dendragapus fuliginosus)
Code: 2.
Placement: after Dusky Grouse.

Comments: split from Blue Grouse (Dendragapus obscurus) by the AOU in its 47th supplement to the check-list. See The Auk 123(3):926-936, 2006. Dendragapus obscurus now becomes Dusky Grouse.

Removed: Yellow-chevroned Parakeet (Brotogeris chiriri)

Comments: this species was added to the Checklist in 2002 based on the occurrence of naturalized populations in California and Florida, following the “splitting” of the Canary-winged Parakeet (B. versicolurus) into Whitewinged Parakeet (B. versicolurus) and Yellow-chevroned Parakeet. However, the Yellow-chevroned Parakeet has never been accepted by the CBRC or FOSRC.


Version 6.6.1 – December 2005

Removed: Black-backed Wagtail (Motacilla lugens)

Comments: Lumped with White Wagtail (Motacilla alba) by the AOU in its 46th supplement to the check-list. See The Auk 122(3):1026-1031, 2005.

Version 6.6 – November 2005

Added: Black-headed Nightingale-Thrush (Catharus mexicanus)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Orange-billed Nightingale-Thrush.

Comments: single adult, 27 May-29 October 2004, Pharr, Hidalgo County, Texas.

Added: Social Flycatcher (Myiozetetes similis)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Great Kiskadee.

Comments: single bird, 7-14 January 2005, Bentsen – Rio Grande Valley State Park, Hildago County, Texas.


Version 6.5 – May 2005

Added: Mangrove Swallow (Tachycineta albilinea)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Tree Swallow.

Comments: November 2002, Viera Wetlands, Brevard County, Florida.

Added: Cape Verde Shearwater (Calonectris edwardsii)
Code: 5.
Placement: after Cory’s Shearwater.

Comments: single individual, 15 August 2004, approximately 49 kilometers southeast of Hatteras Inlet, North Carolina.

Added: Black-bellied Storm-Petrel (Fregetta tropica)
Code: 5.
Placement: after White-faced Storm-Petrel.

Comments: single bird, 31 May 2004, approximately 77 kilometers southeast of Oregon Inlet, North Carolina.