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Bird Checklists of the United States

Washita National Wildlife Refuge

Butler, Oklahoma


Washita National Wildlife Refuge is operated by the US Department of Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service, primarily to provide a resting and feeding area to migrating and wintering waterfowl. The 8,200 acre refuge on the mixed grass plains of west-central Oklahoma is superimposed on the upper reaches of Foss Reservoir. The reservoir was developed by the Bureau of Reclamation. The lower portion above the dam is administered as a State Park.

The reservoir and waterfowl refuge are ideally located within the Central Flyway. Washita's open waters, shallow marshes, and 2,100 acres of planted crops are heavily used by migrating waterfowl and sandhill cranes. Other water and marsh birds enjoy the refuge in lesser numbers.

Diversity of habitat attracts and provides for many other species of migratory and resident birds. Fields of native and introduced grasses are part of the refuge uplands. Brushy draws and bottomlands, and wooded creek and river banks are scattered throughout. Washita lies within the transition zone between the tall grass and short grass prairies. Both eastern and western species of birds occur on the refuge.

This folder lists 229 species of birds that have been identified on the Washita Refuge since its establishment in 1961. All visitors are welcome to report unusual bird sightings to the refuge headquarters.


Abundance by season and nesting status are coded as follows:

* - nesting species

Sp - March-May
S - June-August
F - September-November
W - December-February

a - abundant: a common species which is very numerous
c - common: certain to be seen in suitable habitat at the suitable time of day or season
u - uncommon: present, but not certain to be seen
o - occasional: seen only a few times during a season
r - rare: seen at intervals of 2 to 5 years


LOONS Sp S F W ___ Common Loon o - o o
GREBES Sp S F W ___ Horned Grebe o - o o ___ Eared Grebe u - u u ___ Western Grebe - - r - ___ Pied-billed Grebe c u c o
PELICANS Sp S F W ___ American White Pelican c c u -
CORMORANTS Sp S F W ___ Double-crested Cormorant c o c c
HERONS & IBISES Sp S F W ___ Great Blue Heron c c c o ___ Green Heron u c u - ___ Little Blue Heron o o u - ___ Cattle Egret - o o - ___ Great Egret o u o - ___ Snowy Egret o u o - ___ Black-crowned Night-Heron o u u - ___ Yellow-crowned Night-Heron o c u - ___ Least Bittern o o o - ___ American Bittern u o u - ___ White-faced Ibis o r o -
SWANS, GEESE & DUCKS Sp S F W ___ Tundra Swan (Whistling Swan) r - - o ___ Canada Goose c o c a ___ Brant - r r - ___ Greater White-fronted Goose c - c c ___ Snow Goose u - o u ___ Ross' Goose o - o u ___ Mallard* a u a a ___ American Black Duck r - - r ___ Gadwall c - c c ___ Northern Pintail u - o u ___ Green-winged Teal c - a c ___ Blue-winged Teal* c o c o ___ Cinnamon Teal r - r - ___ American Wigeon c - a a ___ Northern Shoveler c o c o ___ Wood Duck o u o r ___ Redhead o r c o ___ Ring-necked Duck c - c u ___ Canvasback o r o o ___ Greater Scaup - - r r ___ Lesser Scaup u - u o ___ Common Goldeneye u - o u ___ Bufflehead u - o c ___ Ruddy Duck u r u o ___ Hooded Merganser u - o c ___ Common Merganser c - u c ___ Red-breasted Merganser r - - r
VULTURES Sp S F W ___ Turkey Vulture* c c c -
KITES, EAGLES & HAWKS Sp S F W ___ Mississippi Kite* c c - - ___ Sharp-shinned Hawk u o u o ___ Cooper's Hawk u o u o ___ Red-tailed Hawk* c c a c ___ Swainson's Hawk* o c u - ___ Northern Goshawk - - r - ___ Rough-legged Hawk o - o u ___ Ferruginous Hawk o - o u ___ Golden Eagle o - o u ___ Bald Eagle o - o u ___ Northern Harrier (Marsh Hawk)* a u a a ___ Osprey u o o -
FALCONS Sp S F W ___ Prairie Falcon u - u u ___ Peregrine Falcon r - r - ___ Merlin o - u o ___ American Kestrel* c c c u
PHEASANTS, GROUSE, TURKEYS & QUAIL Sp S F W ___ Lesser Prairie-Chicken r r r r ___ Northern Bobwhite* a a a a ___ Ring-necked Pheasant* r r r r ___ Wild Turkey* u o o u
CRANES Sp S F W ___ Whooping Crane o - o - ___ Sandhill Crane o - o u
RAILS, GALLINULES & COOTS Sp S F W ___ Sora o - o - ___ Common Gallinule r r - - ___ American Coot c o c u
PLOVERS Sp S F W ___ Semipalmated Plover o - o - ___ Snowy Plover* o u o - ___ Killdeer* c c c c ___ American Golden Plover (Lesser Gol-Pl.) u - o - ___ Black-bellied Plover u - o -
SANDPIPERS, AVOCETS, STILTS, & PHALAROPES Sp S F W ___ Ruddy Turnstone r - r - ___ Common Snipe u - u r ___ Long-billed Curlew o o o - ___ Upland Sandpiper u o u - ___ Spotted Sandpiper u u o - ___ Willet o - o - ___ Greater Yellowlegs u o u - ___ Lesser Yellowlegs u u o - ___ Pectoral Sandpiper o - o - ___ White-rumped Sandpiper u - o - ___ Baird's Sandpiper c u u - ___ Least Sandpiper c u u - ___ Semipalmated Sandpiper c u c - ___ Western Sandpiper u o o - ___ Sanderling o - o - ___ Long-billed Dowitcher u u o - ___ Stilt Sandpiper o o o - ___ Marbled Godwit u - o - ___ American Avocet u o u - ___ Black-necked Stilt r - - - ___ Wilson's Phalarope u o o -
GULLS & TERNS Sp S F W ___ Herring Gull o - o u ___ Ring-billed Gull c u c c ___ Franklin's Gull o c o - ___ Bonaparte's Gull r - r - ___ Forster's Tern o o - - ___ Common Tern o r - - ___ Least Tern - o o - ___ Black Tern u c u -
DOVES Sp S F W ___ Rock Dove u u u u ___ Mourning Dove* c a c c
CUCKOOS & ANIS Sp S F W ___ Yellow-billed Cuckoo* c c c - ___ Greater Roadrunner* o o o o
BARN OWLS Sp S F W ___ Barn Owl* u u u u
TYPICAL OWLS Sp S F W ___ Eastern Screech-Owl* o o o o ___ Great Horned Owl* c c c a ___ Burrowing Owl o r o - ___ Barred Owl o o o o ___ Long-eared Owl r - r r ___ Short-eared Owl o - o o
NIGHTHAWKS & NIGHTJARS Sp S F W ___ Common Nighthawk* c a c -
SWIFTS Sp S F W ___ Chimney Swift u u u -
HUMMINGBIRDS Sp S F W ___ Ruby-throated Hummingbird o u o - ___ Black-chinned Hummingbird r o r - ___ Rufous Hummingbird r - r -
KINGFISHERS Sp S F W ___ Belted Kingfisher* c c c o
WOODPECKERS Sp S F W ___ Northern Flicker (Common Flicker)* c c c c ___ Red-bellied Woodpecker* c c c c ___ Golden-fronted Woodpecker r r r r ___ Red-headed Woodpecker* c c c u ___ Yellow-bellied Sapsucker o - o u ___ Hairy Woodpecker u u u c ___ Downy Woodpecker u u u c ___ Ladder-backed Woodpecker o - - o
TYRANT FLYCATCHERS Sp S F W ___ Eastern Kingbird* c c c - ___ Western Kingbird* c a c - ___ Scissor-tailed Flycatcher* c a c - ___ Great Crested Flycatcher* u c u - ___ Ash-throated Flycatcher o o o - ___ Eastern Phoebe* u c u - ___ Say's Phoebe r - r -
LARKS Sp S F W ___ Horned Lark* c u c u
SWALLOWS Sp S F W ___ Tree Swallow o - o - ___ Bank Swallow* o o o - ___ Northern Rough-winged Swallow* u u u - ___ Barn Swallow* c a c - ___ Cliff Swallow* u a u - ___ Purple Martin o o o -
JAYS, MAGPIES & CROWS Sp S F W ___ Blue Jay* c c c u ___ American Crow* c c c c
TITMICE Sp S F W ___ Carolina Chickadee* c c c a ___ Tufted Titmouse u u u u
NUTHATCHES Sp S F W ___ White-breasted Nuthatch r - r o ___ Red-breasted Nuthatch r - r o
CREEPERS Sp S F W ___ Brown Creeper - - o u
WRENS Sp S F W ___ House Wren* u u u u ___ Winter Wren r - r o ___ Bewick's Wren* o o o o ___ Carolina Wren* u u u o ___ Marsh Wren o o o u ___ Sedge Wren o - o o
MOCKINGBIRDS & THRASHERS Sp S F W ___ Northern Mockingbird* c c c u ___ Gray Catbird* o u o - ___ Brown Thrasher* c c c u ___ Sage Thrasher r - r r
THRUSHES Sp S F W ___ American Robin* u o u c ___ Hermit Thrush o - o r ___ Swainson's Thrush r r r - ___ Eastern Bluebird* o o o u ___ Mountain Bluebird o - o o
KINGLETS & GNATCATCHERS Sp S F W ___ Blue-gray Gnatcatcher* o o o - ___ Golden-crowned Kinglet o - o o ___ Ruby-crowned Kinglet o - o o
PIPITS Sp S F W ___ American Pipit (Water Pipit) u - u - ___ Sprague's Pipit r - r -
WAXWINGS Sp S F W ___ Cedar Waxwing o - o u
SHRIKES Sp S F W ___ Loggerhead Shrike* u u u u
STARLINGS Sp S F W ___ European Starling* c c c c
VIREOS Sp S F W ___ Bell's Vireo* o u o - ___ Yellow-throated Vireo* o o o -
WOOD-WARBLERS Sp S F W ___ Common Yellowthroat* o u o - ___ Yellow-breasted Chat r o r - ___ Yellow-rumped Warbler - - - r ___ Yellow Warbler - - - r ___ American Redstart r - - -
OLD WORLD SPARROWS Sp S F W ___ House Sparrow* c c c c
BLACKBIRDS & ORIOLES Sp S F W ___ Bobolink o - o - ___ Eastern Meadowlark* c c c c ___ Western Meadowlark* c c c c ___ Yellow-headed Blackbird u - u - ___ Red-winged Blackbird* c c c a ___ Orchard Oriole* o o o - ___ Northern Oriole* c c c - ___ Brewer's Blackbird - - o o ___ Great-tailed Grackle* r - r r ___ Common Grackle u o u c ___ Brown-headed Cowbird* c c c c
FINCHES, GROSBEAKS, BUNTINGS & SPARROWS Sp S F W ___ Purple Finch u - - u ___ House Finch - - - r ___ Northern Cardinal* a a a a ___ Black-headed Grosbeak o o o - ___ Blue Grosbeak u c u - ___ Indigo Bunting* u c u - ___ Dickcissel* c a c - ___ Evening Grosbeak r - r r ___ Pine Siskin o - o u ___ American Goldfinch* u o u c ___ Rufous-sided Towhee u - u o ___ Painted Bunting - - - r ___ Lark Bunting* u - u c ___ Savannah Sparrow c u c o ___ Grasshopper Sparrow* r o r - ___ Le Conte's Sparrow o - o u ___ Vesper Sparrow u - u - ___ Lark Sparrow u c u - ___ Cassin's Sparrow r o r - ___ Dark-eyed Junco u - u c ___ American Tree Sparrow c - c c ___ Chipping Sparrow o - o r ___ Clay-colored Sparrow o - o - ___ Field Sparrow* u u u u ___ Harris' Sparrow c - u c ___ White-throated Sparrow u - c c ___ Rufous-crowned Sparrow o - o o ___ Fox Sparrow r - r o ___ Lincoln's Sparrow o - o o ___ Song Sparrow o - u c ___ McCown's Longspur - - r r ___ Lapland Longspur - - - r ___ Smith's Longspur - - - o ___ Chestnut-collared Longspur o - o u

For additional information contact:
                 Refuge Manager
                 Washita National Wildlife Refuge
                 Route 1, Box 68
                 Butler, Oklahoma 73625
                 Telephone: 405/664-2205
This resource is based on the following source:
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  No date.  Birds of Washita National 
     Wildlife Refuge.  U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  Unpaginated.
This resource should be cited as:
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  No date.  Birds of Washita National 
     Wildlife Refuge.  U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  Unpaginated.
     Jamestown, ND: Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center Online.
     http://www.npwrc.usgs.govwashita.htm 
     (Version 22MAY98).

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