Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
This checklist is a guide to assist visitors within the Chugach National Forest in learning what bird species to expect when, and how numerous.
Pictures of the birds listed may be found in "A Field Guide to Western Birds" by Roger Tory Peterson (published by Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston) and in "Birds of North America" by Chandler S. Robbins, Bertel Bruun, and Herbert S. Zim (published by Golden Press Inc. of New York). The English names and generic order of the birds listed are those designated in the 1957, fifth edition of the "A.O.U. Checklist of North American Birds," with updated changes in 1973 and 1976. The generic order of shorebirds follows that listed in "The Birds of the Palearctic Fauna" by Varie, 1959 (published by H.F. & G. Witherby, London). Another publication in which the names are listed is "Status and Distribution of Alaska Birds" by Kessel and Gibson, 1978 (published by Allen Press, Lawrence, Kansas).
In the spring, the region's geographic location and restrictive topography make it a spectacular migration corridor for millions of birds flying to their northern breeding grounds. It is difficult to imagine the tremendous concentration of waterfowl, shorebirds, and other waterbirds arriving and migrating from coastal waters and tidal marsh areas; especially, the Copper River Delta. A great percentage of Alaska's population of several migrant bird species, mainly waterfowl and shorebirds, pass through the Copper River Delta region each year.
Area or Route
The Chugach National Forest, for the purpose of this resource, is divided into four geographical areas: Kenai-Chugach, Prince William Sound, Copper-Bering Rivers, and the North Gulf of Alaska coastal area. These geographic areas are mostly contiguous but great variations occur in avian use. These variations occur mainly because of habitat types, habitat availability and volume, bird migration routes, and the availability of a preferred food source.
The following are "easy access" highways through forest lands:
B - Breeding: the known or probable abundance of a species breeding population.
Sp - Spring: the occurrence during the migration period, mainly April through early June.
S - Summer: the occurrence mainly during June and July.
F - Fall: The occurrence during the migration period, mainly August through November.
W - Winter: the occurrence during a non-shifting avian population period, mainly between December and March.
a - abundant: species observed repeatedly in its normal habitats (with these
available habitats being heavily used), or the region regularly hosting great
numbers of the species.
c - common: species found in all the normal habitats (with some areas which are presumed suitable habitats being only sparsely occupied or not at all), or the region regularly hosting large numbers of the species.
f - fairly common: species found only in some of its normal habitats (with large areas which are presumed suitable habitat being only sparsely occupied or not at all) or the region regularly hosting substantial numbers of the species.
u - uncommon: species found regularly, but uses very little of the suitable habitat or the region regularly hosting relatively small numbers. The species is not seen regularly, even in its proper habitat.
r - rare: species found or likely to be found regularly within the region, but in very small numbers.
o - casual: species sightings recorded only a few times, and only irregular observation is likely over a period of years.
x - accidental: species sightings recorded only once or perhaps twice; it is usually so far from its range that further observations are considered unlikely.
+ - variable: species may be abundant or common in some years, but rare
in numbers or completely absent during other years (mean year abundance is
listed in proper columns).
*** - Hypothetical records (observations not confirmed)
LOONS B Sp S F W ___ Common Loon f c f c f ___ Yellow-billed Loon - u r u f ___ Arctic Loon r c u c c ___ Red-throated Loon c c c c f
GREBES B Sp S F W ___ Red-necked Grebe r c u c f ___ Horned Grebe r c u c f ___ Western Grebe - - - o o ___ Pied-billed Grebe o o o o o
ALBATROSSES B Sp S F W ___ Short-tailed Albatross*** - - - o - ___ Black-footed Albatross - u f f r ___ Laysan Albatross - r r r -
SHEARWATERS, PETRELS AND FULMARS B Sp S F W ___ Northern Fulmar - c c c r ___ Pink-footed Shearwater - - r - - ___ Flesh-footed Shearwater - - o - - ___ New Zealand Shearwater - - r r - ___ Sooty Shearwater - - a f - ___ Short-tailed Shearwater - - u u o ___ Scaled Petrel - - o - - ___ Fork-tailed Storm-Petrel u c c c r ___ Leach's Storm-Petrel r r r r -
CORMORANTS B Sp S F W ___ Double-crested Cormorant f c c c u ___ Brandt's Cormorant r - r - - ___ Pelagic Cormorant a a a a c ___ Red-faced Cormorant f f f f f ___ Magnificent Frigatebird*** - - x - -
HERONS AND BITTERNS B Sp S F W ___ Great Blue Heron u u u u u
SWANS, GEESE AND DUCKS B Sp S F W ___ Whooper Swan - - - x - ___ Tundra Swan - c o c o ___ Trumpeter Swan c c c c u ___ Canada Goose a a a a u ___ Brant - f r r - ___ Emperor Goose - r o r r ___ Greater White-fronted Goose o c r c - ___ Snow Goose - c - c - ___ Mallard f a f a c ___ American Black Duck - o - o - ___ Gadwall f f f f u ___ Northern Pintail c a c a r ___ Green-winged Teal f a f c r ___ Blue-winged Teal o r o r - ___ Cinnamon Teal - o - - - ___ Northern Shoveler f c f c o ___ Eurasian Wigeon - r - o - ___ American Wigeon f a f a r ___ Canvasback u u u u o ___ Redhead - r o o - ___ Ring-necked Duck - r o r - ___ Greater Scaup c a u a c ___ Lesser Scaup - r - r o ___ Tufted Duck - o - o o ___ Common Goldeneye r a r c a ___ Barrow's Goldeneye c c c c a ___ Bufflehead r a r c c ___ Oldsquaw r c u f c ___ Harlequin Duck a a a a a ___ Steller's Eider - r - - r ___ Common Eider - - - - r ___ King Eider - r - - u ___ White-winged Scoter r a a a a ___ Surf Scoter r a a a a ___ Black Scoter - c f c c ___ Hooded Merganser r r r r r ___ Common Merganser c c c c c ___ Red-breasted Merganser f a f a c
HAWKS, EAGLES AND HARRIERS B Sp S F W ___ Northern Goshawk c c c c c ___ Sharp-shinned Hawk u f u f r ___ Red-tailed Hawk u u u u - ___ Swainson's Hawk - r - - - ___ Rough-legged Hawk - r - r o ___ Golden Eagle u u u u - ___ Bald Eagle a a a a a ___ Northern Harrier u c u c r
OSPREYS B Sp S F W ___ Osprey - r o r -
FALCONS B Sp S F W ___ Gyrfalcon - r r r r ___ Peregrine Falcon r r r r r ___ Merlin r u r u r ___ American Kestrel - o - r o
GROUSE AND PTARMIGANS B Sp S F W ___ Spruce Grouse f f f f f ___ Willow Ptarmigan f f f f f ___ Rock Ptarmigan f f f f f ___ White-tailed Ptarmigan u u u u u
CRANES B Sp S F W ___ Sandhill Crane - f o c -
COOTS B Sp S F W ___ American Coot - o o r -
OYSTERCATCHER B Sp S F W ___ Black Oystercatcher - o o r -
PLOVERS B Sp S F W ___ Semipalmated Plover c c c c - ___ Killdeer - r o r - ___ American Golden Plover - c - f - ___ Black-bellied Plover - c u f - ___ Eurasian Dotterel*** - - - x -
SANDPIPERS B Sp S F W ___ Hudsonian Godwit - u o u - ___ Bar-tailed Godwit - o - r - ___ Marbled Godwit - r - o - ___ Whimbrel - c u f - ___ Bristle-thighed Curlew - r - r - ___ Upland Sandpiper - - - o - ___ Greater Yellowlegs f c f c - ___ Lesser Yellowlegs u f u f - ___ Solitary Sandpiper r u r f - ___ Spotted Sandpiper c c c c x ___ Wandering Tattler f c f c - ___ Ruddy Turnstone - a u f - ___ Black Turnstone - a u f u ___ Red-necked Phalarope c a c a x ___ Red Phalarope - a u c - ___ Common Snipe c c c c r ___ Short-billed Dowitcher f a f c - ___ Long-billed Dowitcher - c - f - ___ Surfbird - c u c u ___ Red Knot - a - r - ___ Sanderling - c f f r ___ Semipalmated Sandpiper - u r u - ___ Western Sandpiper - a c a - ___ Rufous-necked Stint - - - o - ___ Least Sandpiper c a c a - ___ White-rumped Sandpiper - - - o - ___ Baird's Sandpiper - u - u - ___ Pectoral Sandpiper - f - f - ___ Sharp-tailed Sandpiper - - - o - ___ Rock Sandpiper - c - c c ___ Dunlin r a c a u ___ Curlew Sandpiper - x - - - ___ Stilt Sandpiper - - - o - ___ Buff-breasted Sandpiper - - - o -
JAEGERS B Sp S F W ___ Ruff - - - o - ___ American Avocet - x - o - ___ Pomarine Jaeger - f r f - ___ Parasitic Jaeger f u f c - ___ Long-tailed Jaeger - r r r - ___ South Polar Skua - - o o -
GULLS AND TERNS B Sp S F W ___ Glaucous Gull - u u u u ___ Glaucous-winged Gull a a a a a ___ Herring Gull r c u c u ___ Thayer's Gull - f r f u ___ Ring-billed Gull - r r r o ___ Mew Gull a a a a c ___ Black-headed Gull - - - o - ___ Little Gull*** - - x x - ___ Ivory Gull - - - x - ___ Bonaparte's Gull f c f c o ___ Black-legged Kittiwake a a a a u ___ Sabine's Gull - r - u - ___ Arctic Tern a a a a - ___ Aleutian Tern c c c - -
ALCIDS B Sp S F W ___ Common Murre u c c c c ___ Thick-billed Murre - r r r r ___ Pigeon Guillemot c c c c f ___ Marbled Murrelet a a a a a ___ Kittlitz's Murrelet c c c c f ___ Ancient Murrelet - u u u r ___ Cassin's Auklet - o r o - ___ Parakeet Auklet u u u u - ___ Crested Auklet - - - - r ___ Rhinoceros Auklet r - r - r ___ Horned Puffin f f f f r ___ Tufted Puffin a a a a u
PIGEONS AND DOVES B Sp S F W ___ Mourning Dove - - - o -
OWLS B Sp S F W ___ Western Screech-Owl - - - o - ___ Great Horned Owl f f f f f ___ Snowy Owl+ - o - o r ___ Northern Hawk Owl+ u u u u u ___ Great Gray Owl r r r r r ___ Short-eared Owl u f u f r ___ Boreal Owl r r r r r ___ Northern Saw-whet Owl r r r r r
NIGHTHAWKS B Sp S F W ___ Common Nighthawk - - - o -
SWIFTS B Sp S F W ___ Black Swift - - - x - ___ Vaux's Swift - - - x -
HUMMINGBIRDS B Sp S F W ___ Anna's Hummingbird - - - o - ___ Rufous Hummingbird c c c u -
KINGFISHERS B Sp S F W ___ Belted Kingfisher f u f u u
WOODPECKERS B Sp S F W ___ Northern Flicker - - r r - ___ Yellow-bellied Sapsucker - o - o - ___ Hairy Woodpecker u u u u u ___ Downy Woodpecker u u u u u ___ Black-backed Three-toed Woodpecker - - - - o ___ Northern Three-toed Woodpecker u u u u u
FLYCATCHERS B Sp S F W ___ Eastern Kingbird - - - o - ___ Western Kingbird - - - o - ___ Say's Phoebe r r r r - ___ Alder Flycatcher u u u u - ___ Western Flycatcher - r - - - ___ Western Wood-Pewee r - r r - ___ Olive-sided Flycatcher u u u u -
LARKS B Sp S F W ___ Horned Lark - r r r -
SWALLOWS B Sp S F W ___ Violet-green Swallow f c c f - ___ Tree Swallow c c c c - ___ Bank Swallow u r u r - ___ Northern Rough-winged Swallow - o - - - ___ Barn Swallow u u u u - ___ Cliff Swallow r r r r - ___ Purple Martin - o - - -
JAYS AND CROWS B Sp S F W ___ Gray Jay+ f f f f f ___ Steller's Jay c c c c c ___ Black-billed Magpie f f f f f ___ Common Raven a a a a a ___ Northwestern Crow a a a a a
CHICKADEES B Sp S F W ___ Black-capped Chickadee+ u u u u u ___ Boreal Chickadee f f f f f ___ Chestnut-backed Chickadee c c c c c
NUTHATCHES B Sp S F W ___ Red-breasted Nuthatch+ r r r r r
CREEPERS B Sp S F W ___ Brown Creeper u u u u u
DIPPERS B Sp S F W ___ American Dipper f f f f f
WRENS B Sp S F W ___ Winter Wren u u u u u
MUSCICAPIDS B Sp S F W ___ American Robin f f f f r ___ Varied Thrush a a a a r ___ Hermit Thrush a a a a - ___ Swainson's Thrush u u u u - ___ Gray-cheeked Thrush r r r r - ___ Northern Wheatear r r r r - ___ Townsend's Solitaire - r o r - ___ Golden-crowned Kinglet u f u f u ___ Ruby-crowned Kinglet a a a a r
WAGTAILS AND PIPITS B Sp S F W ___ Yellow Wagtail - - - o - ___ American Pipit c c c c x
WAXWINGS B Sp S F W ___ Bohemian Waxwing f f f f f
SHRIKES B Sp S F W ___ Northern Shrike u u u u u
STARLINGS B Sp S F W ___ European Starling - r - r o
WOOD WARBLERS B Sp S F W ___ Tennessee Warbler - o - - - ___ Orange-crowned Warbler a a a a - ___ Yellow Warbler f f f f - ___ Yellow-rumped Warbler f f f f - ___ Townsend's Warbler f u f u - ___ Blackpoll Warbler r r r r - ___ Northern Waterthrush u u u u - ___ Common Yellowthroat - - - x - ___ Wilson's Warbler c c c c -
BLACKBIRDS B Sp S F W ___ Yellow-headed Blackbird - - - o - ___ Red-winged Blackbird r r r r - ___ Rusty Blackbird u u u f r ___ Brown-headed Cowbird - - r r -
TANAGERS B Sp S F W ___ Scarlet Tanager - - o - - ___ Brambling - - - - x
SPARROWS B Sp S F W ___ Pine Grosbeak f f f f f ___ Gray-crowned Rosy Finch f u f u r ___ Hoary Redpoll+ - - - - r ___ Common Redpoll+ f f f f f ___ Pine Siskin+ f c f c f ___ Red Crossbill+ r r r r r ___ White-winged Crossbill+ f f f f f ___ Savannah Sparrow a a a a - ___ Dark-eyed Junco f u f u r ___ American Tree Sparrow u u u u r ___ Chipping Sparrow - - - o - ___ Harris' Sparrow - o - - - ___ White-crowned Sparrow f f f f o ___ Golden-crowned Sparrow a a a a o ___ White-throated Sparrow - - - o x ___ Fox Sparrow a a a a o ___ Lincoln's Sparrow f f f f - ___ Song Sparrow f f f f u ___ Lapland Longspur o u o u - ___ Snow Bunting u u u u r
For more information, please contact:
Forest Supervisor's Office Chugach National Forest 3301 C St., Suite 300 Anchorage, AK 99503 Telephone: 907/271-2500
Isleib, M.E. 1984. Birds of the Chugach National Forest. U.S. Forest Service. Unpaginated.This resource should be cited as:
Isleib, M. E. 1984. Birds of the Chugach National Forest. U.S. Forest Service. Unpaginated. Jamestown, ND: Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center Online. http://www.npwrc.usgs.govchugach.htm (Version 22MAY98).