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Bird Checklists of the United States

Buffalo National River

small state map showing location

Harrison, Arkansas


Buffalo National River is more than just a river. The 95,000-acre park contains open farmlands, oak-hickory forests, ponds and streams, abandoned homesites, tall bluffs and box canyons. These different areas provide a variety of habitats for wildlife that live here.

Over 200 bird species use Buffalo National River for at least some part of the year. Many birds live here year round. Nearly 100 species will build nests, lay eggs, and raise their young here during the summer. Others stop by to feed and rest during spring and fall migrations between northern breeding grounds in the U.S. and in Canada and wintering areas in Central and South America.

Forested areas attract the majority of birds, and it is those birds which are most vocal. In fact, many of the birds on this list are more likely to be heard than seen. The challenge of identifying birds by only their song or call can be a rewarding experience for bird-watchers of today and of future generations.


Sp - Spring - March to May
S - Summer - June to July
F - Fall - August to November
W - Winter - December to February

c - common: frequently observed
f - fairly common: seen every few visits
u - uncommon: not ordinarily observed
r - rare: very few sightings on record
i - irregular: fairly common some years, totally absent in others
a - accidental: seen only a few times and far out of normal range
# - occurs outside park with high probability of occurrence inside the park


LOONS, GREBES Sp S F W ___ Common Loon - - - r ___ Pied-billed Grebe u - # u ___ Horned Grebe - - r r
PELICANS, CORMORANTS Sp S F W ___ American White Pelican r - r - ___ Double-crested Cormorant r - u r
WADING BIRDS Sp S F W ___ American Bittern r - - - ___ Great Blue Heron c c c c ___ Great Egret r r r - ___ Snowy Egret r - - - ___ Little Blue Heron r r r - ___ Cattle Egret r r r - ___ Green Heron u c u - ___ Black-crowned Night-Heron r r r - ___ Yellow-crowned Night-Heron u u - -
WATERFOWL Sp S F W ___ Snow Goose u - u r ___ Canada Goose u - u u ___ Wood Duck f f f r ___ Green-winged Teal u - u - ___ Mallard f - f f ___ Northern Pintail u - u r ___ Blue-winged Teal f - f - ___ Northern Shoveler f - f - ___ Gadwall u - u u ___ American Wigeon u - u - ___ Canvasback - u u u ___ Redhead r - r - ___ Ring-necked Duck # - # u ___ Lesser Scaup u - u u ___ Common Goldeneye - - u u ___ Bufflehead u - u u ___ Hooded Merganser r - r r ___ Common Merganser - - r r ___ Ruddy Duck r - r r
VULTURES, EAGLES, HAWKS, FALCONS Sp S F W ___ Black Vulture u f f f ___ Turkey Vulture c c c c ___ Osprey u r u r ___ Bald Eagle r - r f ___ Northern Harrier - - - r ___ Sharp-shinned Hawk u - u u ___ Cooper's Hawk u u u u ___ Red-shouldered Hawk f f f u ___ Broad-winged Hawk f f f - ___ Red-tailed Hawk c c c c ___ Rough-legged Hawk r - - r ___ Golden Eagle r - r r ___ American Kestrel c u c c ___ Merlin - - - r ___ Peregrine Falcon - - r -
GAMEBIRDS Sp S F W ___ Ruffed Grouse r r r r ___ Wild Turkey c c c c ___ Northern Bobwhite c c c c
RAILS, COOTS, SHOREBIRDS, GULLS Sp S F W ___ Sora r - r - ___ American Coot u - u u ___ Killdeer c c c c ___ American Avocet r - - - ___ Greater Yellowlegs r - - - ___ Willet r - r - ___ Spotted Sandpiper c u c - ___ Common Snipe r - r - ___ American Woodcock u u u u ___ Ring-billed Gull r r r r
PIGEONS, DOVES Sp S F W ___ Rock Dove f f f f ___ Mourning Dove c c c c
CUCKOOS Sp S F W ___ Black-billed Cuckoo r - r - ___ Yellow-billed Cuckoo u c u - ___ Greater Roadrunner u u u u
OWLS, GOATSUCKERS Sp S F W ___ Barn Owl - - - r ___ Eastern Screech-Owl f f f f ___ Great Horned Owl u u u u ___ Barred Owl f f f f ___ Common Nighthawk u c u - ___ Chuck-will's-widow u c u - ___ Whip-poor-will u c u -
SWIFTS, HUMMINGBIRDS Sp S F W ___ Chimney Swift c c u - ___ Ruby-throated Hummingbird c c f -
KINGFISHERS Sp S F W ___ Belted Kingfisher f c f f
WOODPECKERS Sp S F W ___ Red-headed Woodpecker u u u u ___ Red-bellied Woodpecker c c c c ___ Yellow-bellied Sapsucker u - u f ___ Downy Woodpecker c c c c ___ Hairy Woodpecker u u u u ___ Northern Flicker f f f f ___ Pileated Woodpecker c c c c
FLYCATCHERS, LARKS Sp S F W ___ Olive-sided Flycatcher u - u - ___ Eastern Wood-Pewee c c u - ___ Acadian Flycatcher f c u - ___ Alder Flycatcher u - u - ___ Willow Flycatcher u - u - ___ Least Flycatcher f - f - ___ Eastern Phoebe f c f u ___ Great Crested Flycatcher f c u - ___ Eastern Kingbird f c u - ___ Scissor-tailed Flycatcher r u r - ___ Horned Lark r r r r
SWALLOWS Sp S F W ___ Purple Martin c c u - ___ Tree Swallow r - r - ___ Northern Rough-winged Swallow c c u - ___ Bank Swallow c c u - ___ Cliff Swallow r u r - ___ Barn Swallow c c u -
JAYS, CROWS Sp S F W ___ Blue Jay c c c c ___ American Raven c c c c ___ Fish Crow r r r r
TITMICE, CHICKADEES, NUTHATCHES Sp S F W ___ Carolina Chickadee c c c c ___ Tufted Titmouse c c c c ___ Red-breasted Nuthatch i - i i ___ White-breasted Nuthatch c c c c ___ Brown Creeper u - u u
WRENS Sp S F W ___ Carolina Wren c c c c ___ Bewick's Wren r r r r ___ House Wren r r r r ___ Winter Wren u - u u ___ Marsh Wren r r u -
THRUSHES, KINGLETS Sp S F W ___ Golden-crowned Kinglet c - c c ___ Ruby-crowned Kinglet c - c u ___ Blue-gray Gnatcatcher f c f - ___ Eastern Bluebird c c c c ___ Townsend Solitaire - - a - ___ Veery r - r - ___ Gray-cheeked Thrush u - u - ___ Swainson's Thrush c - u - ___ Hermit Thrush u - u c ___ Wood Thrush f c u - ___ American Robin c c c c ___ Gray Catbird f c f # ___ Northern Mockingbird c c c c ___ Brown Thrasher f f f u
PIPITS, WAXWINGS, STARLINGS Sp S F W ___ American Pipit r - r - ___ Cedar Waxwing c - c u ___ Loggerhead Shrike u u u u ___ European Starling f f f f
VIREOS Sp S F W ___ White-eyed Vireo c c u - ___ Bell's Vireo r # - - ___ Solitary Vireo f - f - ___ Yellow-throated Vireo f f u - ___ Warbling Vireo f - f - ___ Philadelphia Vireo f - u - ___ Red-eyed Vireo c c c -
WARBLERS Sp S F W ___ Blue-winged Warbler u u u - ___ Golden-winged Warbler r - r - ___ Tennesse Warbler c - u - ___ Nashville Warbler c - c - ___ Northern Parula c c c - ___ Yellow Warbler f f u - ___ Chestnut-sided Warbler f - u - ___ Magnolia Warbler f - u - ___ Yellow-rumped Warbler c - c c ___ Black-throated Green Warbler f - f - ___ Blackburnian Warbler f - u - ___ Yellow-throated Warbler f f u - ___ Pine Warbler u u u u ___ Prairie Warbler c c u - ___ Palm Warbler u - u - ___ Bay-breasted Warbler u - u - ___ Cerulean Warbler u u r - ___ Black-and-white Warbler c c f - ___ American Redstart f f u - ___ Prothonotary Warbler f f f - ___ Worm-eating Warbler u u u - ___ Swainson's Warbler u u r - ___ Ovenbird c c f - ___ Northern Waterthrush u - u - ___ Louisiana Waterthrush f f f - ___ Kentucky Warbler c c u - ___ Mourning Warbler f - f - ___ Common Yellowthroat c c c - ___ Hooded Warbler f f u - ___ Wilson's Warbler f - f - ___ Canada Warbler f - u - ___ Yellow-breasted Chat c c u -
TANAGERS, GROSBEAKS, BUNTINGS Sp S F W ___ Summer Tanager u f u - ___ Scarlet Tanager u f u - ___ Northern Cardinal c c c c ___ Rose-breasted Grosbeak f - f - ___ Blue Grosbeak u c u - ___ Indigo Bunting c c c - ___ Painted Bunting - r - -
SPARROWS Sp S F W ___ Dickcissel u u u - ___ Eastern Towhee c c c u ___ Spotted Towhee r - r r ___ American Tree Sparrow - - - r ___ Chipping Sparrow f c f r ___ Field Sparrow c c c c ___ Lark Sparrow u u r - ___ Savannah Sparrow u - u r ___ Fox Sparrow u - c c ___ Song Sparrow f - c c ___ Lincoln's Sparrow u - f r ___ Swamp Sparrow u - f u ___ White-throated Sparrow f - f c ___ White-crowned Sparrow u - u u ___ Harris' Sparrow - - - r ___ Dark-eyed Sparrow f - f c
BLACKBIRDS, ORIOLES Sp S F W ___ Red-winged Blackbird c c c c ___ Eastern Meadowlark c c c c ___ Rusty Blackbird - - - u ___ Brewer's Blackbird - - - r ___ Common Grackle c c c c ___ Brown-headed Cowbird c c c c ___ Orchard Oriole f f u - ___ Baltimore Oriole f # f -
FINCHES Sp S F W ___ Purple Finch f - f c ___ House Finch - - - r ___ Pine Siskin - - i i ___ American Goldfinch f f f c ___ Evening Grosbeak - - - i ___ House Sparrow f f f f

Visitors are encouraged to report new sightings to park staff. Entries to this list are based upon park research, confirmed sightings by park staff and visitors, and the annual Christmas Bird Count. Assumed listings are included because of the narrow and linear geography of the park. Order of species and nomenclature corresponds with the American Birding Association list, revised 1996. For more information, contact:

                          Resource Management
                          Buffalo National River
                          P.O. Box 1173
                          Harrison, Arkansas 72601
                          Telephone: 501/741-5443
This resource should be cited as:
No Date.  Buffalo National River Bird Checklist.  Jamestown, ND: 
     Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center Online.  
     http://www.npwrc.usgs.govbuffalo.htm 
     (Version 30DEC2002).

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