USGS - science for a changing world

Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

  Home About NPWRC Our Science Staff Employment Contacts Common Questions About the Site

Bird Checklists of the United States

Birds of Rocky Mountain National Park

Estes Park, Colorado


This list includes 260 species which have been reported for this region, including Rocky Mountain National Park, Arapahoe National Recreation Area, Estes Park, and Granby. It is arranged according to the 6th Edition of the A.O.U Check-list. The park naturalist office would appreciate receiving details of any unusual observations.

Missing codes indicate a lack of documentation.

TIME OF OCCURRENCE
Multiple listings reflect descending order of abundance.

1 - All year
2 - Summer
3 - Winter
4 - Migrant (fall, spring; late summe visitor)
5 - Irregular Visitor

CHANCE OF SEEING
Multiple symbols reflect notable population changes from year to year.

* - Commonly Encountered
& - Fairly Common
^ - Uncommon
# - Rarely Encountered

PREFERRED HABITAT
Codes are listed in order of frequency used. Seasonal changes are indicated by combining habitat with time of occurrence.

A - Aspen
B - Wet Brushland (willow); Marshland
C - Coniferous Forest
D - Douglas-fir
E - Cosmopolitan
F - In Flight
G - Grassland, Meadows
H - Rocky Sites
K - Krummholz (Wind Timber)
L - Lodgepole Pine
M - Dry Brushland (incl. W. Slope Sage)
P - Ponderosa Pine
R - Wooded Creekbottoms (esp. Cottonwood)
S - Spruce Fir
T - Tundra
U - Urban & Ranches
W - Aquatic Habitats (ponds, lakes, streams)


LOONS, GREBES Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Arctic Loon 5 # W ___ Common Loon 4 ^ W ___ Pied-billed Grebe 4 ^ W ___ Horned Grebe 4 # W ___ Red-necked Grebe 4 # W ___ Eared Grebe 4 ^ W ___ Western Grebe 4,2 & W
PELICANS, HHERONS, ALLIES Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ American White Pelican 4 # W ___ American Bittern 4 # W ___ Least Bittern 4 # W ___ Great Blue Heron 4,2 ^ W ___ Snowy Egret 4 # W ___ Green-backed Heron 4 # W (Green Heron) ___ Black-crowned Night-Heron 4 # W ___ White-faced Ibis 4 # W
SWANS, GEESE, DUCKS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Tundra Swan 4 # W (Whistling Swan) ___ Greater White-fronted Goose 3 # W ___ Snow Goose 3 # W ___ Canada Goose 4 ^ W ___ Wood Duck # W ___ Green-winged Teal 4,2,3 & W ___ Mallard 2,3,4 * W ___ Northern Pintail 4,3 ^ W ___ Blue-winged Teal 4,2 & W ___ Cinnamon Teal 4,2 ^ W ___ Northern Shoveler 4,2 ^ W ___ Gadwall 4,2,3 ^ W ___ American Wigeon 4,3 ^ W ___ Canvasback 4 # W ___ Redhead 4,3 ^ W ___ Ring-necked Duck 2 & W ___ Lesser Scaup 4,3 & W ___ Oldsquaw 3 # W ___ White-winged Scoter 4 # W ___ Common Goldeneye 3 * W ___ Barrow's Goldeneye 3,4 & W ___ Bufflehead 4,3 ^ W ___ Hooded Merganser 3,4 ^ W ___ Common Merganser 3,4,2 & W ___ Red-breasted Merganser 4 ^ W ___ Ruddy Duck 4,3 ^ W
VULTURES, HAWKS, EAGLES Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Turkey Vulture 4,2 ^ F ___ Osprey 4,2 ^ W ___ Bald Eagle 3 ^ F,W ___ Northern Harrier 4,1 & F,G,T (Marsh Hawk) ___ Sharp-shinned Hawk 4,1 ^ E,F ___ Cooper's Hawk 4,1 ^ E,F ___ Northern Goshawk 1 & C,F ___ Swainson's Hawk 4,2 ^ F,G,T ___ Red-tailed Hawk 1 * E,F ___ Ferruginous Hawk 4 ^ F,G,T ___ Rough-legged Hawk 3,2 ^ F,G,T ___ Golden Eagle 1 & E,F ___ American Kestrel 2,1 & E,F,G (Sparrow Hawk) ___ Merlin 4,2 # (Pigeon Hawk) ___ Peregrine Falcon 4,1 # F,G,T (Duck Hawk) ___ Prairie Falcon 2,1 & F,T,G
GROUSE, PTARMIGAN Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Chukar # ___ Ring-necked Pheasant 1 # G ___ Blue Grouse 1 & A,C ___ White-tailed Ptarmigan 1 & K,T ___ Sage Grouse 1 ^ M ___ Wild Turkey 1 ^ ___ Northern Bobwhite #
RAILS, COOTS, CRANES Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Virginia Rail 2 ^ W ___ Sora 2 ^ W ___ Common Moorhen # W (Common Gallinule) ___ American Coot 4,2,3 ^ W ___ Sandhill Crane 4 #
SHOREBIRDS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Semipalmated Plover # W ___ Killdeer 2 & W,G ___ American Avocet 4 # W ___ Greater Yellowlegs 4 # W ___ Lesser Yellowlegs 4 ^ W ___ Solitary Sandpiper 4 # W ___ Willet 4 # W ___ Spotted Sandpiper 2 & W ___ Long-billed Curlew 4 # W,G,T ___ Marbled Godwit 4 # W ___ Western Sandpiper 4 # W ___ Least Sandpiper 4 # W ___ Baird's Sandpiper 4 # W,T ___ Common Snipe 2,4 & W ___ Wilson's Phalarope 4 ^ W ___ Red-necked Phalarope 4 # W (Northern Phalarope) ___ Pomarine Jaeger 4 # ___ Franklin's Gull 4 & F,G ___ Bonaparte's Gull # W ___ Ring-billed Gull 2,4,3 ^,& W ___ California Gull 2 ^ W ___ Herring Gull 3 ^ W ___ Forster's Tern 4 # W ___ Black Tern 4 # W
DOVES, PIGEONS, CUCKOOS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Rock Dove 1 ^ U (Common Pigeon) ___ Band-tailed Pigeon 2 & C,F ___ Mourning Dove 1 & G,P,T ___ Yellow-billed Cuckoo # R
OWLS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Flammulated Owl 2 # C ___ Eastern Screech-Owl 1 ^ C ___ Great Horned Owl 1 & E,P,R ___ Northern Pygmy 1 ^ A,C,R ___ Long-eared Owl 1 ^ C,A,R ___ Boreal Owl # S ___ Northern Saw-whet Owl 1 ^ A,C
NIGHTHAWKS, SWIFTS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Common Nighthawk 2 & F,G,C ___ Common Poorwill 2 ^ G,P ___ Black Swift 2 ^ F,H ___ Chimney Swift 2 # F,U ___ White-throated Swift 2 ^ F,H
HUMMINGBIRDS, KINGFISHER Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Magnificent Hummingbird 4,2 # (Rivoli's Hummingbird) ___ Calliope Hummingbird 4,2 # ___ Broad-tailed Hummingbird 2 * E,C,R,U ___ Rufous Hummingbird 4 & E,C,R,U ___ Belted Kingfisher 2,1 & R,W
WOODPECKERS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Lewis' Woodpecker 4 ^ ___ Red-headed Woodpecker 2 # A,R ___ Yellow-bellied Sapsucker 2 * A,B,R ___ Williamson's Sapsucker 2 & P,A,C ___ Downy Woodpecker 1 & R,A,C ___ Hairy Woodpecker 1 & C,R,A ___ Three-toed Woodpecker 1 ^ S,A ___ Northern Flicker 1 * E
FLYCATCHERS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Olive-sided Flycatcher 2 & C ___ Western Wood-Pewee 2 * C,A,R ___ Willow Flycatcher 2 & A,B,R (Traill's Flycatcher) ___ Least Flycatcher 4 # R,A ___ Hammond's Flycatcher 2 & C ___ Dusky Flycatcher 2 ^ A,R,P ___ Western Flycatcher 2 & C,A,R,U ___ Say's Phoebe 4 ^ U,G ___ Ash-throated Flycatcher # ___ Cassin's Kingbird # ___ Western Kingbird 4 ^ G,R,T ___ Eastern Kingbird 4 ^ G
LARKS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Horned Lark 1,4 * G,T ___ Purple Martin # ___ Tree Swallow 2 * F,A,E ___ Violet-green Swallow 2 * F,A,U,E ___ Northern Rough-winged Swallow 2 # G ___ Cliff Swallow 2 & G,U ___ Barn Swallow 2 & U,G
JAYS, CROWS, MAGPIES Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Gray Jay 1 & S,C ___ Steller's Jay 1 * C ___ Blue Jay # ___ Scrub Jay # M ___ Pinyon Jay 5 ^ ___ Clark's Nutcracker 1 * C,T,F ___ Black-billed Magpie 1 * E ___ American Crow 1 & E,F ___ Common Raven 1 & E,F,G,T
CHICKADEES, NUTHATCHES, CREEPER Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Black-capped Chickadee 1 * R,A,P ___ Mountain Chickadee 1 * C,R,A ___ Red-breasted Nuthatch 1 & C,R ___ White-breasted Nuthatch 1 & C,R,A ___ Pygmy Nuthatch 1 & P ___ Brown Creeper 1 & C,R
WRENS, DIPPER Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Rock Wren 2 & H ___ Canyon Wren 2,1 & H ___ Bewick's Wren # ___ House Wren 2 * A,P,R,U,M ___ Winter Wren # ___ Dipper 1 & W
KINGLETS, GNATCATCHERS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Golden-crowned Kinglet 1 & S ___ Ruby-crowned Kinglet 2 * S,L,D ___ Blue-gray Gnatcatcher #
BLUEBIRDS, THRUSHES, THRASHERS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Eastern Bluebird # ___ Western Bluebird 2 ^ P ___ Mountain Bluebird 2 * P,G,T ___ Townsend's Solitaire 1 & C ___ Veery 2,4 # R (Willow Thrush) ___ Swainson's Thrush 2 & D,S (Olive-backed Thrush) ___ Hermit Thrush 2 & D,S ___ American Robin 1,2 * E ___ Varied Thrush # ___ Gray Catbird 2 ^ R ___ Northern Mockingbird # ___ Sage Thrasher 4,2 ^ M,G ___ Brown Thrasher ^ R
PIPITS, WAXWINGS, SHRIKES Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Water Pipit 2,4 * T,G ___ Sprague's Pipit # ___ Bohemian Waxwing 5 ^,* ___ Cedar Waxwing 5 ^ ___ Northern Shrike 3 & G ___ Loggerhead Shrike 4 ^ G
STARLINGS, VIREOS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ European Starling 1 & U,R ___ Solitary Vireo 2 ^ P,A ___ Warbling Vireo 2 * A,R ___ Red-eyed Vireo 4,2 # R,A
WOOD WARBLERS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Tennessee Warbler 4 # ___ Orange-crowned Warbler 4,2 ^ R,B ___ Nashville Warbler 4 # ___ Virginia's Warbler 2 & M ___ Northern Parula # ___ Yellow Warbler 2 & R,B ___ Chestnut-sided Warbler 4,2 # ___ Magnolia Warbler 4,2 # ___ Black-throated Blue Warbler 4 # ___ Yellow-rumped Warbler 2,4 * C,R,A (Audubon's Warbler) (Myrtle Warbler 4) ___ Black-throated Gray Warbler 4 # ___ Townsend's Warbler 4 ^ P,R,A ___ Black-throated Green Warbler 4 # ___ Grace's Warbler 4 # ___ Palm Warbler 4 # ___ Bay-breasted Warbler 4,2 # ___ Black-and-White Warbler 4 # ___ American Redstart 4,2 # R ___ Worm-eating Warbler 4 # ___ Ovenbird # R ___ Northern Waterthrush # R ___ Connecticut Warbler 4 # ___ MacGillivray's Warbler 2 & B,R ___ Common Yellowthroat 4 # B ___ Hooded Warbler 4 # ___ Wilson's Warbler 2 * B,R (Pileolated Warbler) ___ Yellow-breasted Chat 4 # R
TANAGERS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Hepatic Tanager # ___ Scarlet Tanager 4 # ___ Western Tanager 2 & C
GROSBEAKS, BUNTINGS, SPARROWS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Rose-breasted Grosbeak 2 # ___ Black-headed Grosbeak 2 & R,A,P ___ Lazuli Bunting 2 ^ R,M ___ Green-tailed Towhee 2 & M ___ Rufous-sided Towhee 2,3 ^ M ___ American Tree Sparrow 3 & M ___ Chipping Sparrow 2 * P,G ___ Clay-colored Sparrow 4 # G,T ___ Brewer's Sparrow 2,4 ^ G ___ Vesper Sparrow 2,4 & G,T ___ Lark Sparrow 2,4 # G ___ Sage Sparrow 4,2 # M ___ Lark Bunting 4 ^ G,T ___ Savannah Sparrow 2,4 ^ G,T ___ Fox Sparrow 2 # R ___ Song Sparrow 2,1 & B,R ___ Lincoln's Sparrow 2 * B ___ White-throated Sparrow 3 # ___ White-crowned Sparrow 2 * B,K (Gambel's subspecies) ___ Harris' Sparrow 3 # ___ Dark-eyed Junco 1,3 * E,C (Gray-headed Junco) (Subspecies: Oregon) 3 * E Slatecolored 3 & E Whitewinged 3 ^ E
BLACKBIRDS, MEADOWLARKS, ORIOLES Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Bobolink # ___ Red-winged Blackbird 2,3 & B,G,W ___ Western Meadowlark 2 ^ G ___ Yellow-headed Blackbird 4 # ___ Rusty Blackbird # ___ Brewer's Blackbird 2,4 & B,G,T,W ___ Common Grackle 2 ^ U,G ___ Brown-headed Cowbird 2 & C,G,R,U ___ Northern Oriole 2,4 # R (Bullock's Oriole)
FRINGILLID FINCHES Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ Rosy Finch 1 & T,G (Brown-capped Rosy Finch) (Subspecies Hepburn's Gray- 3,4 ^,&,# crownedand Black) ___ Pine Grosbeak 1 & S ___ Cassin's Finch 1 & M,P,S ___ House Finch 1 & U ___ Red Crossbill 1,5 & C,F ___ White-winged Crossbill 5 # C ___ Common Redpoll 3 ^ ___ Pine Siskin 1,2 &,* C,E,F ___ Lesser Goldfinch 2 # R ___ American Goldfinch 2,3 ^ R ___ Evening Grosbeak 3,2,5 & A,C,R,U
OLD WORLD SPARROWS Occurrence Chance of Seeing Habitat ___ House Sparrow 1 & U (English Sparrow)

For more information contact Richard G. Beidleman, Colorado College in cooperation with the National Park Service cover by Howard Rollin.

This resource is based on the following source:

Beidleman, R.G. in cooperation with the National Park Service.  No date.  
     Checklist of birds of Rocky Mountain National Park and Arapaho 
     National Recreation Area.  National Park Service.  Unpaginated.
This resource should be cited as:
Beidleman, R.G. in cooperation with the National Park Service.  No date.  
     Checklist of birds of Rocky Mountain National Park and Arapaho 
     National Recreation Area.  National Park Service.  Unpaginated.  
     Jamestown, ND: Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center Online.
     http://www.npwrc.usgs.govrockymt.htm  
     (Version 22MAY98).

Return to Bird Checklists of Colorado
Return to Bird Checklists of the United States

Accessibility FOIA Privacy Policies and Notices

Take Pride in America logo USA.gov logo U.S. Department of the Interior | U.S. Geological Survey
URL: http://www.npwrc.usgs.gov/resource/birds/chekbird/r6/rockymt.htm
Page Contact Information: Webmaster
Page Last Modified: Friday, 01-Feb-2013 19:01:38 EST
Menlo Park, CA [caww55]