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Bird Checklists of the United States

St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge

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St. Marks, Florida


St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge is on the shores of Apalachee Bay, in northwestern Florida, about 20 miles south of Tallahassee. Established in 1931, the refuge contains about 68,000 acres of salt and brackish marshes, hardwood swamps, pine flatwoods, and pine-oak uplands; parts of which are in Taylor, Jefferson, and Wakulla Counties. An additional 31,700 acres of water in Apalachee Bay are included as part of the refuge through a Presidential Proclamation. St. Marks Refuge provides an extensive wintering habitat for waterfowl and is one of the earliest such areas acquired by the Government.

The seasons bring about marked changes in both species and abundance of birdlife. Best opportunities for observing the greatest variety and number of birds are during the fall and spring. Waterfowl are most easily seen on the refuge from mid-November through late December. Shore birds are most common during late spring and early fall.

Ethics for Birdwatching

Take care not to disturb nesting birds. This exposes eggs and young to extreme temperatures and predation.

Disturb wintering wildlife as little as possible, particularly during critical feeding and resting periods. They need all of their energy reserves to withstand the stresses of harsh weather and migration.

Do not litter. Many birds die when they become entangled in fishing lines, 6-pack rings and other trash, or when they mistake garbage for food.

This list is in accordance with the A.O.U. Checklist as amended. Enjoy your visit!


Symbols used in this list are defined as follows:

Seasonal appearance

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

Seasonal abundance

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
o - occasional: seen only a few times during a season
r - rare: seen at intervals of 2 to 5 years
* - nests on refuge

This folder contains 274 species of birds that are considered part of the refuge's fauna.


LOONS Sp S F W ___ Red-throated Loon - - - r ___ Common Loon c - u c
GREBES Sp S F W ___ •Pied-billed Grebe c c a a ___ Horned Grebe c r u c ___ Red-necked Grebe - - r r
PELICANS and ALLIES Sp S F W ___ Northern Gannet o - o o ___ American White Pelican u r u u ___ Brown Pelican c c c c ___ •Double-crested Cormorant a a a a ___ •Anhinga c c c c ___ Magnificent Frigatebird - r - -
HERONS, EGRETS and ALLIES Sp S F W ___ American Bittern o - o o ___ •Least Bittern c c u r ___ •Great Blue Heron c c c c ___ •Great Egret a a a a ___ •Snowy Egret a a a a ___ •Little Blue Heron a a a a ___ •Tricolored Heron a a a a ___ • Reddish Egret o u u o ___ •Cattle Egret c c c r ___ •Green Heron c c u u ___ •Black-crowned Night-Heron c u u c ___ •Yellow-crowned Night-Heron u u r r
IBISES, SPOONBILL, STORK Sp S F W ___ •Glossy Ibis u u u c ___ •White Ibis a a c c ___ Roseate Spoonbill r r r - ___ Wood Stork u u u r
WATERFOWL Sp S F W ___ Fulvous Whistling-Duck r - r r ___ Tundra Swan - - r r ___ Greater White-Fronted Goose - - r r ___ Snow Goose - - u o ___ Canada Goose r - r r ___ •Wood Duck c c a a ___ Green-winged Teal c - c c ___ American Black Duck u - u u ___ Mallard u - u c ___ Northern Pintail c - c c ___ Blue-winged Teal c u c u ___ Cinnamon Teal - - r r ___ Northern Shoveler c r c c ___ Gadwall c - c c ___ Eurasian Wigeon - - r r ___ American Wigeon c r c c ___ Canvasback u - u u ___ Redhead u r a a ___ Ring-necked Duck c - c c ___ Greater Scaup u o c c ___ Lesser Scaup c o c c ___ Long-tailed Duck - - r r ___ Black Scoter r - r r ___ Surf Scoter r - r r ___ Common Goldeneye u - u u ___ Bufflehead u - c c ___ Hooded Merganser - - c c ___ Common Merganser r - - r ___ Red-breasted Merganser c r c c ___ Ruddy Duck u r u u
VULTURES, HAWKS and ALLIES Sp S F W ___ •Black Vulture u u c c ___ •Turkey Vulture c c c c ___ •Osprey c c u o ___ •Swallow-tailed Kite u u - - ___ •Mississippi Kite u u - - ___ •Bald Eagle u o u c ___ Northern Harrier c r c c ___ Sharp-shinned Hawk r - u u ___ Cooper's Hawk r - u o ___ •Red-shouldered Hawk c c c c ___ •Broad-winged Hawk u u u - ___ •Red-tailed Hawk u u c c ___ Golden Eagle r - - r ___ American Kestrel u - u u ___ Merlin o - o o ___ Peregrine Falcon r - o o
GALLINACEOUS BIRDS (QUAILS,TURKEY, and ALLIES) Sp S F W ___ •Wild Turkey u u u u ___ •Northern Bobwhite u u u u
RAILS, GALLINULES, COOTS and CRANES Sp S F W ___ Yellow Rail r - r r ___ •Black Rail o o o - ___ •Clapper Rail c c c c ___ •King Rail u u u u ___ Virginia Rail u - u u ___ Sora c - c u ___ •Purple Gallinule u c u r ___ •Common Moorhen c a a u ___ American Coot a o a a ___ Limpkin r r r r ___ Sandhill Crane - - r r
SHOREBIRDS Sp S F W ___ Black-bellied Plover c u c c ___ American Golden Plover r - r - ___ •Wilson's Plover u u u u ___ Semipalmated Plover c u c c ___ Piping Plover r r r - ___ •Killdeer c r c u ___ •American Oystercatcher u u u u ___ •Black-necked Stilt o o o - ___ American Avocet - o o o ___ Greater Yellowlegs c u c u ___ Lesser Yellowlegs u u u u ___ Solitary Sandpiper o o o - ___ •Willet c c a a ___ Spotted Sandpiper u u u o ___ Upland Sandpiper r r r - ___ Whimbrel u u u u ___ Long-billed Curlew r - r - ___ Marbled Godwit o r o r ___ Ruddy Turnstone c u c u ___ Red Knot o r o - ___ Sanderling u u u u ___ Semipalmated Sandpiper c u c - ___ Western Sandpiper c c a u ___ Least Sandpiper c c c c ___ White-rumped Sandpiper o r - - ___ Pectoral Sandpiper o - o - ___ Dunlin a r c a ___ Stilt Sandpiper o - o - ___ Short-billed Dowitcher c c a a ___ Long-billed Dowitcher r - r r ___ Common Snipe u - c u ___ American Woodcock u - u u ___ Wilson's Phalarope r r - - ___ •Laughing Gull c a c o ___ Bonaparte's Gull o - o o ___ Ring-billed Gull a o a a ___ Herring Gull c o c c ___ Great Black-backed Gull r - - r ___ Gull-billed Tern r r r - ___ Caspian Tern r r r r ___ Royal Tern o o o o ___ Sandwich Tern o o o - ___ Common Tern u u u - ___ Forster's Tern c c c c ___ •Least Tern c u u - ___ Black Tern o u o - ___ Black Skimmer o o o o
PIGEONS and DOVES Sp S F W ___ Rock Dove r r r r ___ Eurasian Collared Dove o o o o ___ White-winged Dove - - o - ___ •Mourning Dove u u c u ___ •Common Ground-Dove u u u u
CUCKOOS Sp S F W ___ Black-billed Cuckoo r r r - ___ •Yellow-billed Cuckoo c c c - ___ Groove-billed Ani - - r r
OWLS Sp S F W ___ •Common Barn Owl r r r r ___ •Eastern Screech-Owl u u u u ___ •Great Horned Owl u u u u ___ •Barred Owl u u u u
NIGHTJARS Sp S F W ___ •Common Nighthawk c c c - ___ •Chuck-will's-widow c c u - ___ Whip-poor-will o - o r
SWIFTS and HUMMINGBIRDS Sp S F W ___ •Chimney Swift u u u - ___ Ruby-throated Hummingbird ___ •Hummingbird u o u -
KINGFISHERS Sp S F W ___ •Belted Kingfisher c c c c
WOODPECKERS Sp S F W ___ •Red-headed Woodpecker o o o o ___ •Red-bellied Woodpecker c c c c ___ Yellow-bellied Sapsucker u - u u ___ •Downy Woodpecker u u u u ___ •Hairy Woodpecker o o o o ___ •Red-cockaded Woodpecker u u u u ___ •Northern Flicker c u c c ___ •Pileated Woodpecker u u u u
FLYCATCHERS Sp S F W ___ •Eastern Wood-Pewee u u u - ___ •Acadian Flycatcher c c u - ___ Eastern Phoebe u - c c ___ Vermilion Flycatcher r - o o ___ •Great Crested Flycatcher c c o - ___ Western Kingbird r - o - ___ •Eastern Kingbird c c c - ___ •Gray Kingbird c c u - ___ Scissor-tailed Flycatcher r - r -
MARTINS AND SWALLOWS Sp S F W ___ •Purple Martin c c u u ___ Tree Swallow a u a a ___ Northern Rough-winged Swallow c u u r ___ Bank Swallow o o o - ___ Cliff Swallow - - r - ___ Barn Swallow c c c r
JAYS AND CROWS Sp S F W ___ •Blue Jay c c c c ___ •American Crow c c c c ___ •Fish Crow c c c u
CHICKADEES AND TITMICE Sp S F W ___ •Carolina Chickadee c c c c ___ •Tufted Titmouse c c c c
NUTHATCHES Sp S F W ___ Red-breasted Nuthatch - - - r ___ •Brown-headed Nuthatch u u u u
CREEPERS Sp S F W ___ Brown Creeper r - r r
WRENS Sp S F W ___ •Carolina Wren c c c c ___ House Wren u - c u ___ Winter Wren u - u u ___ Sedge Wren u - c c ___ •Marsh Wren c c c c
KINGLETS AND GNATCATCHERS Sp S F W ___ Golden-crowned Kinglet u - u u ___ Ruby-crowned Kinglet c - c c ___ •Blue-gray Gnatcatcher c c c u
BLUEBIRDS, THRUSHES and ROBINS Sp S F W ___ •Eastern Bluebird u r u u ___ Veery o - u - ___ Gray-cheecked Thrush o - u - ___ Swainson's Thrush o - u - ___ Hermit Thrush o - u u ___ Wood Thrush o - u - ___ American Robin a - c a
THRASHERS Sp S F W ___ Gray Catbird c - a c ___ •Northern Mockingbird c c c c ___ •Brown Thrasher c c a c
PIPITS Sp S F W ___ American Pipit u - u u
WAXWINGS Sp S F W ___ Cedar Waxwing u - u u
STARLINGS Sp S F W ___ •Starling u u u c
SHRIKES Sp S F W ___ •Loggerhead Shrike u u u u
VIREOS Sp S F W ___ •White-eyed Vireo c c c u ___ Blue-headed Vireo u - u u ___ •Yellow-throated Vireo u u u - ___ •Red-eyed Vireo c u c -
WARBLERS Sp S F W ___ Blue-winged Warbler r r r - ___ Golden-winged Warbler - r r - ___ Tennessee Warbler r - u - ___ Orange-crowned Warbler u - u u ___ •Northern Parula c c u - ___ Yellow Warbler o c c - ___ Chestnut-sided Warbler r - o - ___ Magnolia Warbler r - u - ___ Cape May Warbler u - - - ___ Black-throated Blue Warbler r - r - ___ Yellow-rumped Warbler a - a a ___ Black-throated Green Warbler r - r - ___ Blackburnian Warbler r - r - ___ •Yellow-throated Warbler c c u o ___ •Pine Warbler c c c c ___ Prairie Warbler c c c r ___ Palm Warbler c - c r ___ Blackpoll Warbler u - - - ___ Cerulean Warbler - r r - ___ Black-and-white Warbler u u u u ___ American Redstart o r o - ___ •Prothonotary Warbler c c u - ___ Worm-eating Warbler r r r - ___ •Swainson's Warbler r r r - ___ Ovenbird r - r - ___ Northern Waterthrush r r r - ___ Louisiana Waterthrush r r r - ___ •Kentucky Warbler u u r - ___ •Common Yellowthroat c c c c ___ •Hooded Warbler u u u - ___ •Yellow-breasted Chat c c r r
TANAGERS Sp S F W ___ •Summer Tanager c c c - ___ Scarlet Tanager r - o
NEW WORLD FINCHES Sp S F W ___ •Northern Cardinal c c c c ___ Rose-breasted Grosbeak r - o - ___ •Blue Grosbeak u u u - ___ •Indigo Bunting c u c - ___ Painted Bunting r - r - ___ Dickcissel r - r -
SPARROWS Sp S F W ___ •Eastern Towhee a a a a ___ •Bachman's Sparrow u u u u ___ Chipping Sparrow u - u u ___ Field Sparrow u - u u ___ Vesper Sparrow u - u u ___ Savannah Sparrow u - u u ___ Henslow's Sparrow - - - r ___ Saltmarsh Sharp-tailed Sparrow u - u u ___ Nelson's Sharp-tailed Sparrow u - u u ___ Song Sparrow c - c c ___ Swamp Sparrow c - c c ___ White-throated Sparrow c - c c ___ White-crowned Sparrow - - r - ___ Dark-eyed Junco r - o o ___ Grasshopper Sparrow r - r - ___ Seaside Sparrow u - u u ___ Lark Sparrow - - r -
BLACKBIRDS, GRACKLES, COWBIRDS and ORIOLES Sp S F W ___ Bobolink c - u - ___ •Red-winged Blackbird a a a a ___ •Eastern Meadowlark c u c c ___ Rusty Blackbird u - u u ___ •Boat-tailed Grackle a a a a ___ •Common Grackle c c c c ___ Shiny Cowbird r r - - ___ Brown-headed Cowbird c u u u ___ •Orchard Oriole c u o - ___ Baltimore Oriole r - u -
OLD WORLD FINCHES Sp S F W ___ Purple Finch r - r u ___ American Goldfinch c - c c
WEAVER FINCHES Sp S F W ___ House Sparrow r r r r
The following are additional species that are of such accidental or rare occurrence on the refuge that they have been recorded only once or a few times and are generally considered out of their normal range:

Eared Grebe                              Cave Swallow
Cory's Shearwater                        Horned Lark
American Flamingo                        White-breasted Nuthatch
Brant                                    Sprague's Pipit
Mottled Duck                             Bell's Vireo
White-winged Scoter                      Warbling Vireo
White-tailed Kite                        Connecticut Warbler
Short-tailed Hawk                        Canada Warbler
Rough-legged Hawk                        Clay-colored Sparrow
Hudsonian Godwit                         Lark Bunting
Buff-breasted Sandpiper                  LeConte's Sparrow
Baird's Sandpiper                        Fox Sparrow
Bridled Tern                             Lapland Longspur
Sooty Tern                               Yellow-headed Blackbird
Inca Dove                                Pine Siskin         
Budgerigar                               Evening Grosbeak
Short-eared Owl                          Red-faced Ibis      
If you observe any accidental or discontinued birds, please notify a refuge employee.
For further information contact:
                       Refuge Manager
                       St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge
                       P.O. Box 68
                       St. Marks, Florida 32355     
                       Telephone: 850/925-6121
                       fw4_rw_st_marks@fws.gov


Sighting Notes
Date:__________________________________________________________________________

Time:__________________________________________________________________________

Weather:_______________________________________________________________________

No. of Species:________________________________________________________________

Route or area:_________________________________________________________________

Observers:_____________________________________________________________________

Remarks:_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________________
This resource is based on the following source:
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  May 2001.  St. Marks National Wildlife 
     Refuge Bird List.  U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  Unpaginated.
This resource should be cited as:
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  May 2001.  St. Marks National Wildlife 
     Refuge Bird List.  U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Unpaginated.
     Jamestown, ND: Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center Online.
     http://www.npwrc.usgs.govstmarks.htm 
     (Version 30DEC2002).

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