List of Oklahoma birds

List of Oklahoma birds

The List of Oklahoma birds lists every wild bird species ever seen in the U.S. state of Oklahoma, as recorded by the Oklahoma Bird Records Committee. The following markings have been used:

* (I) - Introduced: Birds that have been introduced to North America by the actions of man, either directly or indirectly
*(E) - Extinct
*(Ex) - Extirpated: A bird that, while it is not extinct, is no longer found in Oklahoma. The only bird marked (Ex) is the Ivory-billed Woodpecker which was, until 2004 presumed to be extinct, but was reportedly rediscovered in the wild. However it is not now found in Oklahoma
*(A) - Accidental: Birds that have been seen only a few times, or only once.
*(H) - Hypothetical: Birds that have had a credible sighting reported, but have not been documented with a specimen or with a suitable photograph

Birds listed as either accidental or hypothetical should not be expected to be found anywhere in Oklahoma with regularity. Except for the accidental and hypothetical birds, only birds that are considered to have established, self-sustaining, wild populations in Oklahoma are included on this list. This means that birds that are probable escapees are not included on this list. The Ringed Turtle-Dove ("Streptopelia risoria") was previously considered to be an established wild bird, and, although occasional sightings are reported from residential areas, these birds are probable escapees, and evidence of a true self-sustaining population is lacking. It is, therefore, not included on this list. There are 469 species on this list, including 17 hypothetical species.

This list is presented in taxonomic order and follows "The Check-list of North American Birds" (7th ed., 1998), published by the American Ornithologists' Union. The family accounts at the beginning of each heading reflect this taxonomy, as do the species counts found in each family accounts. Introduced, casual, accidental, hypothetical, extirpated and extinct species are included in the total species counts for North America and Oklahoma.

Ducks, Geese, and Swans

Order: AnseriformesFamily: Anatidae

The family Anatidae includes the ducks and most duck-like waterfowl, such as geese and swan. These are birds that are modified for an aquatic existence with webbed feet, bills which are flattened to a greater or lesser extent, and feathers that are excellent at shedding water due to special oils. There are 131 species world wide, 61 North American species, and 42 Oklahoma species.

*Black-bellied Whistling-Duck, "Dendrocygna autumnalis"
*Fulvous Whistling-Duck, "Dendrocygna bicolor" (A)
*Greater White-fronted Goose, "Anser albifrons"
*Snow Goose, "Chen caerulescens"
*Ross's Goose, "Chen rossii"
*Brant, "Branta bernicla" (A)
*Barnacle Goose, "Branta leucopsis" (A)
*Cackling Goose, "Branta hutchinsonii"
*Canada Goose, "Branta canadensis"
*Mute Swan, "Cygnus olor" (I)(H)
*Trumpeter Swan, "Cygnus buccinator"
*Tundra Swan, "Cygnus columbianus"
*Wood Duck, "Aix sponsa"
*Gadwall, "Anas strepera"
*Eurasian Wigeon, "Anas penelope" (A)
*American Wigeon, "Anas americana"
*American Black Duck, "Anas rubripes"
*Mallard, "Anas platyrhynchos"
*Mottled Duck, "Anas fulvigula" (A)
*Blue-winged Teal, "Anas discors"
*Cinnamon Teal, "Anas cyanoptera"
*Northern Shoveler, "Anas clypeata"
*Northern Pintail, "Anas acuta"
*Garganey, "Anas querquedula"
*Baikal Teal, "Anas formosa" (H)
*Green-winged Teal, "Anas crecca"
*Canvasback, "Aythya valisineria"
*Redhead, "Aythya americana"
*Ring-necked Duck, "Aythya collaris"
*Greater Scaup, "Aythya marila"
*Lesser Scaup, "Aythya affinis"
*Surf Scoter, "Melanitta perspicillata"
*White-winged Scoter, "Melanitta fusca"
*Black Scoter, "Melanitta nigra" (A)
*Long-tailed Duck, "Clangula hyemalis"
*Bufflehead, "Bucephala albeola"
*Common Goldeneye, "Bucephala clangula"
*Barrow's Goldeneye, "Bucephala islandica" (A)
*Hooded Merganser, "Lophodytes cucullatus"
*Common Merganser, "Mergus merganser"
*Red-breasted Merganser, "Mergus serrator"
*Ruddy Duck, "Oxyura jamaicensis"

Partridges, Grouse, Turkeys, and Old World quail

Order: GalliformesFamily: Phasianidae

The Phasianidae is a family of birds which consists of the pheasants and their allies. These are terrestrial species, variable in size but generally plump, with broad relatively short wings. Many species are gamebirds, or have been domesticated as a food source for humans. There are 180 species world wide, 16 North American species, and 6 Oklahoma species.

*Ring-necked Pheasant, "Phasianus colchicus" (I)
*Gunnison Sage-Grouse, "Centrocercus minimus" (H)
*Sharp-tailed Grouse, "Tympanuchus phasianellus" (H)
*Greater Prairie-Chicken, "Tympanuchus cupido"
*Lesser Prairie-Chicken, "Tympanuchus pallidicinctus"
*Wild Turkey, "Meleagris gallopavo"

New World quail

Order: GalliformesFamily: Odontophoridae

The New World quails are small, plump terrestrial birds only distantly related to the quails of the Old World, but named for their similar appearance and habits. There are 32 species, world-wide, all found only in the Americas, 6 North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species.

*Scaled Quail, "Callipepla squamata"
*Northern Bobwhite, "Colinus virginianus"


Order: GaviiformesFamily: Gaviidae

Loons are aquatic birds size of a large duck, to which they are unrelated. Their plumage is largely grey or black, they have spear-shaped bills. Loons swim well, and fly adequately, but, because their legs are placed towards the rear of the body, are almost hopeless on land. There are five species world-wide, 5 North American species, and 4 Oklahoma species.

*Red-throated Loon, "Gavia stellata"
*Pacific Loon, "Gavia pacifica"
*Common Loon, "Gavia immer"
*Yellow-billed Loon, "Gavia adamsii" (H)


Order: PodicipediformesFamily: Podicipedidae

Grebes small to medium-large sized freshwater diving birds. They have lobed toes, and are excellent swimmers and divers. However, they have their feet placed far back on the body, making them quite ungainly on land. There are 20 species world-wide, 7 North American species, and 7 Oklahoma species.

*Least Grebe, "Tachybaptus dominicus" (H)
*Pied-billed Grebe, "Podilymbus podiceps"
*Horned Grebe, "Podiceps auritus"
*Red-necked Grebe, "Podiceps grisegena" (H)
*Eared Grebe, "Podiceps nigricollis"
*Western Grebe, "Aechmorphorus occidentalis"
*Clark's Grebe, "Aechmorphorus clarkii" (H)


Order: PelecaniformesFamily: Pelecanidae

Pelicans are very large water birds with a distinctive pouch under the beak Like other birds in the order Pelecaniformes, they have four webbed toes. There are 8 species world wide, 2 North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species.

*American White Pelican, "Pelecanus erythrorhynchos"
*Brown Pelican, "Pelecanus occidentalis" (H)


Order: PelecaniformesFamily: Phalacrocoracidae

Cormorants are medium-to-large aquatic birds, usually with mainly dark plumage and areas of coloured skin on the face. The bill is long, thin, and sharply hooked. Their feet are four-toed and webbed, a distinguishing feature among the Pelecaniformes order. There are 36 species world-wide, 6 North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species.

*Neotropic Cormorant, "Phalacrocorax brasilianus"
*Double-crested Cormorant, "Phalacrocorax auritus"


Order: PelecaniformesFamily: Anhingidae

Darters are cormorant-like water birds with very long necks and long, straight beaks. They often swim with only the neck above water, and are fish-eaters. There are 4 species world-wide, 1 North American species, and 1 Oklahoma species.

*Anhinga, "Anhinga anhinga"


Order: PelecaniformesFamily: Fregatidae

Frigatebirds are large sea-birds usually found over tropical oceans. They are large, black or black and white, with long wings and deeply-forked tails. The males have inflatable coloured throat pouches. They do not swim or walk, and cannot take off from a flat surface. Having the largest wingspan to body weight ratio of any bird, they are essentially aerial, able to stay aloft for more than a week. There are five species world-wide, three North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species.

*Magnificent Frigatebird, "Fregata magnificens" (A)
*Great Frigatebird, "Fregata minor" (A)

Bitterns, Herons, and Egrets

Order: CiconiiformesFamily: Ardeidae

The family Ardeidae contains the herons, egrets, and bitterns. Herons and Egrets are medium to large sized wadng birds with long necks and legs. Bitterns tend to be shorter necked and more secrative. Unlike other long necked birds suck as storks, ibises and spoonbills, members of Ardeidae fly with their necks retracted. There are 61 species world wide, 17 North American species, and 12 Oklahoma species.

*American Bittern, "Botaurus lentiginosus"
*Least Bittern, "Ixobrychus exilis"
*Great Blue Heron, "Ardea herodias"
*Great Egret, "Ardea alba"
*Snowy Egret, "Egretta thula"
*Little Blue Heron, "Egretta caerulea"
*Tricolored Heron, "Egretta tricolor"
*Reddish Egret, "Egretta rufescens" (A)
*Cattle Egret, "Bubulcus ibis"
*Green Heron, "Butorides virescens"
*Black-crowned Night-Heron, "Nycticorax nycticorax"
*Yellow-crowned Night-Heron, "Nyctanassa violacea"

Ibises and Spoonbills

Order: CiconiiformesFamily: Threskiornithidae

The family Threskiornithidae includes the ibises and spoonbills. They have long, broad wings. Their bodies tends to be elongated, the neck more so, with rather long legs. The bill is also long, decurved in the case of the ibises, straight and distinctively flattened in the spoonbills. There are 36 species world wide, 5 North American species, and 4 Oklahoma species.

*White Ibis, "Eudocimus albus"
*Glossy Ibis, "Plegadis falcinellus" (A)
*White-faced Ibis, "Plegadis chihi"
*Roseate Spoonbill, "Ajaia ajaja"


Order: CiconiiformesFamily: Ciconiidae

Storks are large, heavy, long-legged, long-necked wading birds with long stout bills and wide wingspans. They lack the powder down that other wading birds such as herons, spoonbills and ibises use to clean off fish slime. Storks lack a pharynx and are mute. There are 19 species world wide, 2 North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species.

*Jabiru, "Jabiru mycteria" (A)
*Wood Stork, "Mycteria americana"

New World vultures

Order: CiconiiformesFamily: Cathartidae

The New World vultures are not closely related to Old World vultures, but superficially resemble them because of convergent evolution. Like the Old World vultures, they are scavengers However, unlike Old World vultures, which find carcasses by sight, New World vultures have a good sense of smell with which they located carcasses. There are 7 species world wide, all found only in the Americas, 3 North American species and 2 Oklahoma species

*Black Vulture, "Coragyps atratus"
*Turkey Vulture, "Cathartes aura"

Hawks, Kites, and Eagles

Order: FalconiformesFamily: Accipitridae

The family Accipitridae is a family of birds of prey and include hawks, eagles, kites, harriers and Old World vultures. These birds have very large powerful hooked beaks for tearing flesh from their prey, strong legs, powerful talons, and keen eyesight. There are 233 species world wide, 28 North American species, and 18 Oklahoma species.

*Osprey, "Pandion haliaetus"
*Swallow-tailed Kite, "Elanoides forficatus" (A)
*White-tailed Kite, "Elanus leucurus" (A)
*Mississippi Kite, "Ictinia mississippiensis"
*Bald Eagle, "Haliaeetus leucocephalus"
*Northern Harrier, "Circus cyaneus"
*Sharp-shinned Hawk, "Accipiter striatus"
*Cooper's Hawk, "Accipiter cooperii"
*Northern Goshawk, "Accipiter gentilis"
*Gray Hawk, "Asturina nitida" (H)
*Harris's Hawk, "Parabuteo unicinctus"
*Red-shouldered Hawk, "Buteo lineatus"
*Broad-winged Hawk, "Buteo platypterus"
*Swainson's Hawk, "Buteo swainsoni"
*Red-tailed Hawk, "Buteo jamaicensis"
*Ferruginous Hawk, "Buteo regalis"
*Rough-legged Hawk, "Buteo lagopus"
*Golden Eagle, "Aquila chrysaetos"

Caracaras and Falcons

Order: FalconiformesFamily: Falconidae

Falconidae is a family of diurnal birds of prey, notably the falcons and caracaras. They differ from hawks, eagles, and kites in that they kill with their beaks instead of their feet. There are 62 species world wide, 10 North American species, and 6 Oklahoma species.

*Crested Caracara, "Caracara cheriway" (A)
*American Kestrel, "Falco sparverius"
*Merlin, "Falco columbarius"
*Gyrfalcon, "Falco rusticolus" (A)
*Peregrine Falcon, "Falco peregrinus"
*Prairie Falcon, "Falco mexicanus"

Rails, Gallinules, and Coots

Order: GruiformesFamily: Rallidae

Rallidae is a large family of small to medium-sized birds which includes the rails, crakes, coots, and gallinules. The most typical family members occupy dense vegetation in damp environments near lakes, swamps, or rivers. In general they are shy and secretive birds, difficult to observe. Most species have strong legs, and have long toes which are well adapted to soft, uneven surfaces. They tend to have short, rounded wings and be weak fliers. There are 143 species world wide, 13 North American species, and 8 Oklahoma species.

*Yellow Rail, "Coturnicops noveboracensis"
*Black Rail, "Laterallus jamaicensis" (H)
*King Rail, "Rallus elegans"
*Virginia Rail, "Rallus limicola"
*Sora, "Porzana carolina"
*Purple Gallinule, "Porphyrio martinica"
*Common Moorhen, "Gallinula chloropus"
*American Coot, "Fulica americana"


Order: GruiformesFamily: Gruidae

Cranes are large, long-legged and long-necked birds. Unlike the similar-looking but unrelated herons, cranes fly with necks outstretched, not pulled back. Most have elaborate and noisy courting displays or "dances". There are 15 species worldwide, 3 North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species.

*Sandhill Crane, "Grus canadensis"
*Whooping Crane, "Grus americana"

Lapwings and Plovers

Order: CharadriiformesFamily: Charadriidae

The family Charadriidae includes the plovers, dotterels, and lapwings. They are small to medium-sized birds with compact bodies, short, thick necks and long, usually pointed, wings. They are found in open country worldwide, mostly in habitats near water, although there are some exceptions. There are 66 species world-wide, 17 North American species, and 8 Oklahoma species.

*Black-bellied Plover, "Pluvialis squatarola"
*American Golden-Plover, "Pluvialis dominica"
*Snowy Plover, "Charadrius alexandrinus"
*Wilson's Plover, "Charadrius wilsonia" (H)
*Semipalmated Plover, "Charadrius semipalmatus"
*Piping Plover, "Charadrius melodus"
*Killdeer, "Charadrius vociferus"
*Mountain Plover, "Charadrius montanus"

tilts and Avocets

Order: CharadriiformesFamily: Recurvirostridae

Recurvirostridae is a family of large wading birds, which includes the avocets and the stilts. The avocets have long legs and long up-curved bills. The stilts have extremely long legs and long, thin, straight bills. There are 9 species world wide, 3 North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species.

*Black-necked Stilt, "Himantopus mexicanus"
*American Avocet, "Recurvirostra americana"

andpipers and Allies

Order: CharadriiformesFamily: Scolopacidae

The Scolopacidae are a large diverse family of small to medium sized shorebirds including the Sandpipers, Curlews, Godwits, Shanks, Tattlers, Woodcocks, Snipes, Dowitchers and Phalaropes. The majority of species eat small invertebrates picked out of the mud or soil. Different lengths of legs and bills enable different species to feed in the same habitat, particularly on the coast, without direct competition for food. There are 86 species world wide, 65 North American species, and 33 Oklahoma species.

*Greater Yellowlegs, "Tringa melanoleuca"
*Lesser Yellowlegs, "Tringa flavipes"
*Solitary Sandpiper, "Tringa solitaria"
*Willet, "Catoptrophorus semipalmatus"
*Spotted Sandpiper, "Actitis macularia"
*Upland Sandpiper, "Bartramia longicauda"
*Eskimo Curlew, "Numenius borealis" (Prob. E) (A)
*Whimbrel, "Numenius phaeopus"
*Long-billed Curlew, "Numenius americanus"
*Hudsonian Godwit, "Limosa haemastica"
*Marbled Godwit, "Limosa fedoa"
*Ruddy Turnstone, "Arenaria interpres"
*Red Knot, "Calidris canutus"
*Sanderling, "Calidris alba"
*Semipalmated Sandpiper, "Calidris pusilla"
*Western Sandpiper, "Calidris mauri"
*Least Sandpiper, "Calidris minutilla"
*White-rumped Sandpiper, "Calidris fuscicollis"
*Baird's Sandpiper, "Calidris bairdii"
*Pectoral Sandpiper, "Calidris melanotos"
*Purple Sandpiper, "Calidris maritima" (A)
*Dunlin, "Calidris alpina"
*Curlew Sandpiper, "Calidris ferruginea" (H)
*Stilt Sandpiper, "Calidris himantopus"
*Buff-breasted Sandpiper, "Tryngites subruficollis"
*Ruff, "Philomachus pugnax" (A)
*Short-billed Dowitcher, "Limnodromus griseus"
*Long-billed Dowitcher, "Limnodromus scolopaceus"
*Wilson's Snipe, "Gallinago delicata"
*American Woodcock, "Scolopax minor"
*Wilson's Phalarope, "Phalaropus tricolor"
*Red-necked Phalarope, "Phalaropus lobatus"
*Red Phalarope, "Phalaropus fulicarius" (A)

kuas, Gulls, Terns, and Skimmers

Order: CharadriiformesFamily: Laridae

Laridae is a family of medium to large birds seabirds and includes jaegers, skuas, gulls, terns, kittiwakes and skimmers. They are typically grey or white, often with black markings on the head or wings. They have stout, longish bills and webbed feet. There are 108 species world wide, 54 North American species, and 28 Oklahoma species.

*Pomarine Jaeger, "Stercorarius pomarinus" (A)
*Parasitic Jaeger, "Stercorarius parasiticus" (A)
*Laughing Gull, "Larus atricilla"
*Franklin's Gull, "Larus pipixcan"
*Little Gull, "Larus minutus"
*Black-headed Gull, "Larus ridibundus" (A)
*Bonaparte's Gull, "Larus philadelphia"
*Heermann's Gull, "Larus heermanni" (A)
*Mew Gull, "Larus canus" (A)
*Ring-billed Gull, "Larus delawarensis"
*California Gull, "Larus californicus"
*Herring Gull, "Larus argentatus"
*Thayer's Gull, "Larus thayeri" (A)
*Iceland Gull, "Larus glaucoides" (A)
*Lesser Black-backed Gull, "Larus fuscus"
*Glaucous-winged Gull, "Larus glaucescens" (A)
*Glaucous Gull, "Larus hyperboreus"
*Great Black-backed Gull, "Larus marinus" (A)
*Sabine's Gull, "Xema sabini"
*Black-legged Kittiwake, "Rissa tridactyla" (A)
*Caspian Tern, "Hydroprogne caspia"
*Royal Tern, "Sterna maxima" (A)
*Common Tern, "Sterna hirundo"
*Arctic Tern, "Sterna paradisaea" (A)
*Forster's Tern, "Sterna forsteri"
*Least Tern, "Sternula antillarum"
*Black Tern, "Chlidonias niger"
*Black Skimmer, "Rynchops niger" (A)

Pigeons and Doves

Order: ColumbiformesFamily: Columbidae

Pigeons and doves are stout-bodied birds with short necks and short slender bills with a fleshy cere. There are 308 species world wide, 18 North American species, and 8 Oklahoma species.

*Rock Pigeon, "Columba livia" (I)
*Band-tailed Pigeon, "Patagioenas fasciata" (A)
*Eurasian Collared-Dove, "Streptopelia decaocto" (I)
*White-winged Dove, "Zenaida asiatica"
*Mourning Dove, "Zenaida macroura"
*Passenger Pigeon, "Ectopistes migratorius" (E)
*Inca Dove, "Columbina inca"
*Common Ground-Dove, "Columbina passerina" (A)


Order: PsittaciformesFamily: Psittacidae Parrots are small to large birds with a characteristic curved beak shape. Their upper mandibles have slight mobility in the joint with the skull and the have a generally erect stance. All parrots are zygodactyl, having the four toes on each foot placed two at the front and two back. There are 335 species world wide, 8 North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species.

*Monk Parakeet, "Myiopsitta monachus" (I) (H)
*Carolina Parakeet, "Conuropsis carolinensis" (E)

Cuckoos, Roadrunners, and Anis

Order: CuculiformesFamily: Cuculidae

The family Cuculidae includes cuckoos, roadrunners and anis. These birds are of variable size with slender bodies, long tails and strong legs. Unlike the cuckoo species of the Old World, North American cuckoos are not brood parasites. There are 138 species world wide, 8 North American species, and 4 Oklahoma species.

*Black-billed Cuckoo, "Coccyzus erythropthalmus"
*Yellow-billed Cuckoo, "Coccyzus americanus"
*Greater Roadrunner, "Geococcyx californianus"
*Groove-billed Ani, "Crotophaga sulcirostris" (A)

Barn owls

Order: StrigiformesFamily: Tytonidae

Barn owls are medium to large sized owls with large heads and characteristic heart-shaped faces. They have long strong legs with powerful talons. There are 16 species world wide, 1 North American species, and 1 Oklahoma species.

*Barn Owl, "Tyto alba"

Typical owls

Order: StrigiformesFamily: Strigidae

Typical owls are small to large solitary nocturnal birds of prey. They have large forward-facing eyes and ears, a hawk-like beak, and a conspicuous circle of feathers around each eye called a facial disk. There are 195 species world wide, 21 North American species, and 9 Oklahoma species.

*Western Screech-Owl, "Megascops kennicottii"
*Eastern Screech-Owl, "Megascops asio"
*Great Horned Owl, "Bubo virginianus"
*Snowy Owl, "Bubo scandiacus"
*Burrowing Owl, "Athene cunicularia"
*Barred Owl, "Strix varia"
*Long-eared Owl, "Asio otus"
*Short-eared Owl, "Asio flammeus"
*Northern Saw-whet Owl, "Aegolius acadicus" (A)


Order: CaprimulgiformesFamily: Caprimulgidae

Nightjars are medium-sized nocturnal birds with long wings, short legs and very short bills that usually nest on the ground. Most have small feet, of little use for walking, and long pointed wings. Their soft plumage is crypically coloured to resemble bark or leaves. There are 86 species world wide, 9 North American species, and 5 Oklahoma species.

*Lesser Nighthawk, " Chordeiles acutipennis" (A)
*Common Nighthawk, " Chordeiles minor"
*Common Poorwill, " Phalaenoptilus nuttallii"
*Chuck-will's-widow, " Caprimulgus carolinensis"
*Whip-poor-will, " Caprimulgus vociferus"


Order: ApodiformesFamily: Apodidae

The swifts are small aerial birds, spending the majority of their lives flying. These birds have very short legs and never settle voluntarily on the ground, perching instead only on vertical surfaces. Many swifts have very lobg swept-back wings that resemble a crescent or a boomerang. There are 98 species world wide, 9 North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species.

*Chimney Swift, "Chaetura pelagica"
*White-throated Swift, "Aeronautes saxatalis"


Order: ApodiformesFamily: Trochilidae

Hummingbirds are small birds capable of hovering in mid-air due to the rapid flapping of their wings. They are the only birds that can fly backwards. There are 337 species world wide, 23 North American species, and 9 Oklahoma species.

*Green Violet-ear, "Colibri thalassinus" (A)
*Broad-billed Hummingbird, "Cynanthus latirostris" (A)
*Ruby-throated Hummingbird, "Archilochus colubris"
*Black-chinned Hummingbird, "Archilochus alexandri"
*Anna's Hummingbird, "Calypte anna" (A)
*Calliope Hummingbird, "Stellula calliope" (A)
*Broad-tailed Hummingbird, "Selasphorus platycercus" (A)
*Rufous Hummingbird, "Selasphorus rufus"


Order: CoraciiformesFamily: Alcedinidae

Kingfishers are medium sized birds with large heads, long pointed bills, short legs, and stubby tails. There are 94 species world wide, 3 North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species.

*Ringed Kingfisher, "Ceryle torquata" (A)
*Belted Kingfisher, "Ceryle alcyon"

Woodpeckers, Sapsuckers, and Flickers

Order: PiciformesFamily: Picidae

Woodpeckers are small to medium sized birds with chisel like beaks, short legs, stiff tails and long tongues used for capturing insects. Some species have feet with two toes pointing forward, and two backward, while several species have only three toes. Many woodpeckers have the habit of tapping noisily on tree trunks with their beaks. There are 218 species world wide, 26 North American species, and 15 Oklahoma species.

*Lewis's Woodpecker, "Melanerpes lewis"
*Red-headed Woodpecker, "Melanerpes erythrocephalus"
*Acorn Woodpecker, "Melanerpes formicivorus" (A)
*Golden-fronted Woodpecker, "Melanerpes aurifrons"
*Red-bellied Woodpecker, "Melanerpes carolinus"
*Williamson's Sapsucker, "Sphyrapicus thyroideus" (A)
*Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, "Sphyrapicus varius"
*Red-naped Sapsucker, "Sphyrapicus nuchalis"
*Ladder-backed Woodpecker, "Picoides scalaris"
*Downy Woodpecker, "Picoides pubescens"
*Hairy Woodpecker, "Picoides villosus"
*Red-cockaded Woodpecker, "Picoides borealis"
*Northern Flicker, "Colaptes auratus"
*Pileated Woodpecker, "Dryocopus pileatus"
*Ivory-billed Woodpecker, "Campephilus principalis" (Ex)

Tyrant flycatchers

Order: PasseriformesFamily: Tyrannidae

Tyrant flycatchers are Passerine birds which occur throughout North and South America. They superficially resemble the Old World flycatchers, but are more robust with stronger bills. They do not have the sophisticated vocal capabilities of the songbirds. Most, but not all, are rather plain. As the name implies, most are insectivorous. There are 429 species world wide, all found only in the Americas, 45 North American species, and 24 Oklahoma species.

*Olive-sided Flycatcher, "Contopus cooperi"
*Western Wood-Pewee, "Contopus sordidulus"
*Eastern Wood-Pewee, "Contopus virens"
*Yellow-bellied Flycatcher, "Empidonax flaviventris"
*Acadian Flycatcher, "Empidonax virescens"
*Alder Flycatcher, "Empidonax alnorum"
*Willow Flycatcher, "Empidonax traillii"
*Least Flycatcher, "Empidonax minimus"
*Hammond's Flycatcher, "Empidonax hammondii"
*Gray Flycatcher, "Empidonax wrightii" (H)
*Dusky Flycatcher, "Empidonax oberholseri"
*Cordilleran Flycatcher, "Empidonax occidentalis" (A)
*Black Phoebe, "Sayornis nigricans" (A)
*Eastern Phoebe, "Sayornis phoebe"
*Say's Phoebe, "Sayornis saya"
*Vermilion Flycatcher, "Pyrocephalus rubinus"
*Dusky-capped Flycatcher, "Myiarchus tuberculifer" (H)
*Ash-throated Flycatcher, "Myiarchus cinerascens"
*Great Crested Flycatcher, "Myiarchus crinitus"
*Great Kiskadee, "Pitangus sulphuratus" (A)
*Cassin's Kingbird, "Tyrannus vociferans"
*Western Kingbird, "Tyrannus verticalis"
*Eastern Kingbird, "Tyrannus tyrannus"
*Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, "Tyrannus forficatus" (see picture at top of article)


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Laniidae

Shrikes are passerine birds known for their habit of catching other birds and small animals and impaling the uneaten portions of their bodies on thorns. A typical shrike's beak is hooked, like a bird of prey. There are 31 species world wide 3 North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species.

*Loggerhead Shrike, "Lanius ludovicianus"
*Northern Shrike, "Lanius excubitor"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Vireonidae

The vireos are a group of small to medium sized passerine birds restricted to the New World. They are typically greenish in colour and resemble wood warblers apart from their heavier bills. There are 52 species world wide, 16 North American species, and 11 Oklahoma species

*White-eyed Vireo, "Vireo griseus"
*Bell's Vireo, "Vireo bellii"
*Black-capped Vireo, "Vireo atricapilla"
*Gray Vireo, "Vireo vicinior" (A)
*Yellow-throated Vireo, "Vireo flavifrons"
*Plumbeous Vireo, "Vireo plumbeus"
*Cassin's Vireo, "Vireo cassinii" (A)
*Blue-headed Vireo, "Vireo solitarius"
*Warbling Vireo, "Vireo gilvus"
*Philadelphia Vireo, "Vireo philadelphicus"
*Red-eyed Vireo, "Vireo olivaceus"

Jays, Crows, Magpies, and Ravens

Order: PasseriformesFamily: Corvidae

The Corvidae family includes crows, ravens, jays, choughs, magpies, treepies, nutcrackers, and ground jays. Corvids are above average in size for the bird order Passeriformes. Some of the larger species show levels of learned behavior of a high degree. There are 120 species world wide, 21 North American speicies, and 11 Oklahoma species.

*Gray Jay, "Perisoreus canadensis" (H)
*Steller's Jay, "Cyanocitta stelleri"
*Blue Jay, "Cyanocitta cristata"
*Western Scrub-Jay, "Aphelocoma californica"
*Pinyon Jay, "Gymnorhinus cyanocephalus"
*Clark's Nutcracker, "Nucifraga columbiana" (A)
*Black-billed Magpie, "Pica hudsonia"
*American Crow, "Corvus brachyrhynchos"
*Fish Crow, "Corvus ossifragus"
*Chihuahuan Raven, "Corvus cryptoleucus"
*Common Raven, "Corvus corax"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Alaudidae

Larks are small terrestrial birds with often extravagant songs and display flights. Most larks are fairly dull in appearance. Their food is insects and seeds. There are 91 species world wide, 2 North American species, and 1 Oklahoma species.

*Horned Lark, "Eremophila alpestris"

wallows and Martins

Order: PasseriformesFamily: Hirundinidae

The Hirundinidae family is a group of passerines characterised by their adaptation to aerial feeding. Their adaptations include a slender streamlined body, long pointed wings and short bills with wide gape. The feet are designed for perching rather than walking, and the front toes are partially joined at the base. There are 75 species world wide, 14 North American species, and 8 Oklahoma species.

*Purple Martin, "Progne subis"
*Tree Swallow, "Tachycineta bicolor"
*Violet-green Swallow, "Tachycineta thalassina" (H)
*Northern Rough-winged Swallow, "Stelgidopteryx serripennis"
*Bank Swallow, "Riparia riparia"
*Cliff Swallow, "Petrochelidon pyrrhonota"
*Cave Swallow, "Petrochelidon fulva" (H)
*Barn Swallow, "Hirundo rustica"

Chickadees and Titmice

Order: PasseriformesFamily: Paridae

The Paridae are mainly small stocky woodland species with short stout bills. Some have crests. They are adaptable birds, with a mixed diet including seeds and insects. There are species 59 world wide, 12 North American species and 6 Oklahoma species.

*Carolina Chickadee, "Poecile carolinensis"
*Black-capped Chickadee, "Poecile atricapilla" (A)
*Mountain Chickadee, "Poecile gambeli"
*Juniper Titmouse, "Baeolophus ridgwayi"
*Tufted Titmouse, "Baeolophus bicolor"
*Black-crested Titmouse, "Baeolophus atricristatus"

Penduline Tits

Order: PasseriformesFamily: Remizidae

The penduline tits are a group of small passerine birds, related to the true tits. They are insectivores. There are 13 species world wide. 1 North American Species, 1 Oklahoma species.

*Verdin, "Auriparus flaviceps"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Aegithalidae

Long-tailed tits are a group of small passerine birds with medium to long tails. They make woven bag nests in trees. Most eat a mixed diet that includes insects. There are 9 species world wide, 1 North American species, and 1 Oklahoma species.

*Bushtit, "Psaltriparus minimus"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Sittidae

Nuthatches are small woodland birds. They have the unusual ability to climb down trees head first, unlike other birds which can only go upwards. Nuthatches have big heads, short tails and powerful bills and feet. There are 24 species world wide, 4 North American species, and 4 Oklahoma species.

*Red-breasted Nuthatch, "Sitta canadensis"
*White-breasted Nuthatch, "Sitta carolinensis"
*Pygmy Nuthatch, "Sitta pygmaea" (A)
*Brown-headed Nuthatch, "Sitta pusilla"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Certhiidae

Treecreepers are small woodland birds, brown above and white below. They have thin pointed down-curved bills, which they use to extricate insects from bark. They have stiff tail feathers, like woodpeckers, which they use to support themselves on vertical trees. There are 6 species world wide, 1 North American species , and 1 Oklahoma species.

*Brown Creeper, "Certhia americana"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Troglodytidae

Wrens are small and inconspicuous birds, except for their loud songs. They have short wings and a thin down-turned bill. Several species often hold their tails upright. All are insectivorous. There are 79 species world wide, 9 North American species, and 8 Oklahoma species.

*Rock Wren, "Salpinctes obsoletus"
*Canyon Wren, "Catherpes mexicanus"
*Carolina Wren, "Thryothorus ludovicianus"
*Bewick's Wren, "Thryomanes bewickii"
*House Wren, "Troglodytes aedon"
*Winter Wren, "Troglodytes troglodytes"
*Sedge Wren, "Cistothorus platensis"
*Marsh Wren, "Cistothorus palustris"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Regulidae

The kinglets are a small family of birds which resemble the titmice. They are very small insectivorous birds in the genus Regulus. The adults have coloured crowns, giving rise to their name. There are 5 species world wide, 2 North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species,

*Golden-crowned Kinglet, "Regulus satrapa"
*Ruby-crowned Kinglet, "Regulus calendula"

Old World warblers and Gnatcatchers

Order: PasseriformesFamily: Sylviidae

The family Sylviidae is a group of small insectivorous passerine birds. The Sylviidae mainly occur as breeding species, as the common name implies, in Europe, Asia and, to a lesser extent Africa. Most are of generally undistinguished appearance, but many have distinctive songs. There are about 300 species world wide, 12 North American Species and 1 Oklahoma species.

*Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, "Polioptila caerulea"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Turdidae

The Thrushes are a group of passerine birds that occur mainly but not exclusively in the Old World. They are plump, soft plumaged, small to medium sized insectivores or sometimes omnivores, often feeding on the ground. Many have attractive songs. There are 335 species world wide, 28 North American species, and 11 Oklahoma species.

*Eastern Bluebird, "Sialia sialis"
*Western Bluebird, "Sialia mexicana" (A)
*Mountain Bluebird, "Sialia currucoides"
*Townsend's Solitaire, "Myadestes townsendi"
*Veery, "Catharus fuscescens"
*Gray-cheeked Thrush, "Catharus minimus"
*Swainson's Thrush, "Catharus ustulatus"
*Hermit Thrush, "Catharus guttatus"
*Wood Thrush, "Hylocichla mustelina"
*American Robin, "Turdus migratorius"
*Varied Thrush, "Ixoreus naevius" (A)


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Mimidae

The Mimids are a family of passerine birds that includes thrashers, mockingbirds, tremblers, and the New World catbirds. These birds are notable for their vocalization, especially their remarkable ability to mimic a wide variety of birds and other sounds heard outdoors. The species tend towards dull grays and browns in their appearance. There are 35 species world wide, 13 North American species, and 5 Oklahoma species.

*Gray Catbird, "Dumetella carolinensis"
*Northern Mockingbird, "Mimus polyglottos"
*Sage Thrasher, "Oreoscoptes montanus"
*Brown Thrasher, "Toxostoma rufum"
*Curve-billed Thrasher, "Toxostoma curvirostre"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Sturnidae

Starlings are small to medium-sized passerine birds. They are medium-sized passerines with strong feet. Their flight is strong and direct, and they are very gregarious. Their preferred habitat is fairly open country, and they eat insects and fruit. Plumage is typically dark with a metallic sheen. There are 125 species world wide, 3 North American species, and 1 Oklahoma species.

*European Starling, "Sturnus vulgaris" (I)


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Motacillidae

The Motacillidae are a family of small passerine birds with medium to long tails. They include the wagtails, longclaws and pipits. They are slender, ground feeding insectivores of open country. There are 54 species world wide, 11 North American species and 2 Oklahoma species.

*American Pipit, "Anthus rubescens"
*Sprague's Pipit, "Anthus spragueii"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Bombycillidae

The waxwings are a group of passerine birds characterised by soft silky plumage and unique red tips to some of the wing feathers. In the Bohemian and Cedar Waxwings, these tips look like sealing wax, and give the group its name. These are arboreal birds of northern forests. They live on insects in summer and berries in winter. There are three species world wide, 2 North American species, and 2 Oklahoma species.

*Bohemian Waxwing, "Bombycilla garrulus" (A)
*Cedar Waxwing, "Bombycilla cedrorum"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Ptilogonatidae

The silky-flycatchers are a small family of passerine birds which occur mainly in Central America, although the range of one species. They are related to waxwings, and like that group have a soft silky plumage, usually grey or pale yellow in colour. They have small crests.

*Phainopepla, "Phainopepla nitens", (H)


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Parulidae

The Wood Warblers are a group of small often colourful passerine birds restricted to the New World. Most are arboreal, but some like are more terrestrial. Most members of this family are insectivores. There are 119 species world wide, 57 North American species, and 42 Oklahoma species.

*Blue-winged Warbler, "Vermivora pinus"
*Golden-winged Warbler, "Vermivora chrysoptera" (A)
*Tennessee Warbler, "Vermivora peregrina"
*Orange-crowned Warbler, "Vermivora celata"
*Nashville Warbler, "Vermivora ruficapilla"
*Virginia's Warbler, "Vermivora virginiae"
*Northern Parula, "Parula americana"
*Yellow Warbler, "Dendroica petechia"
*Chestnut-sided Warbler, "Dendroica pensylvanica"
*Magnolia Warbler, "Dendroica magnolia"
*Cape May Warbler, "Dendroica tigrina" (A)
*Black-throated Blue Warbler, "Dendroica caerulescens" (A)
*Yellow-rumped Warbler, "Dendroica coronata"
*Black-throated Gray Warbler, "Dendroica nigrescens" (A)
*Black-throated Green Warbler, "Dendroica virens"
*Townsend's Warbler, "Dendroica townsendi"
*Blackburnian Warbler, "Dendroica fusca"
*Yellow-throated Warbler, "Dendroica dominica"
*Grace's Warbler, "Dendroica graciae" (H)
*Pine Warbler, "Dendroica pinus"
*Prairie Warbler, "Dendroica discolor"
*Palm Warbler, "Dendroica palmarum"
*Bay-breasted Warbler, "Dendroica castanea"
*Blackpoll Warbler, "Dendroica striata"
*Cerulean Warbler, "Dendroica cerulea"
*Black-and-white Warbler, "Mniotilta varia"
*American Redstart, "Setophaga ruticilla"
*Prothonotary Warbler, "Protonotaria citrea"
*Worm-eating Warbler, "Helmitheros vermivorus"
*Swainson's Warbler, "Limnothlypis swainsonii"
*Ovenbird, "Seiurus aurocapilla"
*Northern Waterthrush, "Seiurus noveboracensis"
*Louisiana Waterthrush, "Seiurus motacilla"
*Kentucky Warbler, "Oporornis formosus"
*Connecticut Warbler, "Oporornis agilis" (A)
*Mourning Warbler, "Oporornis philadelphia"
*MacGillivray's Warbler, "Oporornis tolmiei"
*Common Yellowthroat, "Geothlypis trichas"
*Hooded Warbler, "Wilsonia citrina"
*Wilson's Warbler, "Wilsonia pusilla"
*Canada Warbler, "Wilsonia canadensis"
*Yellow-breasted Chat, "Icteria virens"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Thraupidae

The tanagers are a large group of small to medium-sized passerine birds restricted to the New World, mainly in the tropics. Many species are brightly coloured. They are seedeaters, but their preference tends towards fruit and nectar. Most have short, rounded wings. There are 256 species world wide, 6 North American Species, and 3 Oklahoma species.

*Summer Tanager, "Piranga rubra"
*Scarlet Tanager, "Piranga olivacea"
*Western Tanager, "Piranga ludoviciana"

American sparrows, Towhees, Juncos, and Longspurs

Order: PasseriformesFamily: Emberizidae

The Emberizidae are a large family of passerine birds. They are seed-eating birds with a distinctively shaped bill. In Europe, most species are named as buntings. In North America, most of the species in this family are known as Sparrows, but these birds are not closely related to the Old World sparrows which are in the family Passeridae. Many emberizid species have distinctive head patterns. There are species 275 world wide, 60 North American species and 36 Oklahoma species.

*Green-tailed Towhee, "Pipilo chlorurus"
*Spotted Towhee, "Pipilo maculatus"
*Eastern Towhee, "Pipilo erythrophthalmus"
*Canyon Towhee, "Pipilo fuscus"
*Cassin's Sparrow, "Aimophila cassinii"
*Bachman's Sparrow, "Aimophila aestivalis"
*Rufous-crowned Sparrow, "Aimophila ruficeps"
*American Tree Sparrow, "Spizella arborea"
*Chipping Sparrow, "Spizella passerina"
*Clay-colored Sparrow, "Spizella pallida"
*Brewer's Sparrow, "Spizella breweri"
*Field Sparrow, "Spizella pusilla"
*Vesper Sparrow, "Pooecetes gramineus"
*Lark Sparrow, "Chondestes grammacus"
*Black-throated Sparrow, "Amphispiza bilineata"
*Sage Sparrow, "Amphispiza belli" (A)
*Lark Bunting, "Calamospiza melanocorys"
*Savannah Sparrow, "Passerculus sandwichensis"
*Grasshopper Sparrow, "Ammodramus savannarum"
*Baird's Sparrow, "Ammodramus bairdii" (A)
*Henslow's Sparrow, "Ammodramus henslowii"
*Le Conte's Sparrow, "Ammodramus leconteii"
*Nelson's Sharp-tailed Sparrow, "Ammodramus nelsoni"
*Fox Sparrow, "Passerella iliaca"
*Song Sparrow, "Melospiza melodia"
*Lincoln's Sparrow, "Melospiza lincolnii"
*Swamp Sparrow, "Melospiza georgiana"
*White-throated Sparrow, "Zonotrichia albicollis"
*Harris's Sparrow, "Zonotrichia querula"
*White-crowned Sparrow, "Zonotrichia leucophrys"
*Dark-eyed Junco, "Junco hyemalis"
*McCown's Longspur, "Calcarius mccownii"
*Lapland Longspur, "Calcarius lapponicus"
*Smith's Longspur, "Calcarius pictus"
*Chestnut-collared Longspur, "Calcarius ornatus"
*Snow Bunting, "Plectrophenax nivalis" (A)

Cardinals, Saltators, and Grosbeaks

Order: PasseriformesFamily: Cardinalidae

The Cardinals are a family of passerine birds that are robust, seed-eating birds, with strong bills. They are typically associated with open woodland. The sexes usually have distinct plumages. There are 43 species world wide, 13 North American species and 9 Oklahoma species.

*Northern Cardinal, "Cardinalis cardinalis"
*Pyrrhuloxia, "Cardinalis sinuatus" (A)
*Rose-breasted Grosbeak, "Pheucticus ludovicianus"
*Black-headed Grosbeak, "Pheucticus melanocephalus"
*Blue Grosbeak, "Passerina caerulea"
*Lazuli Bunting, "Passerina amoena"
*Indigo Bunting, "Passerina cyanea"
*Painted Bunting, "Passerina ciris"
*Dickcissel, "Spiza americana"


Order: PasseriformesFamily: Icteridae

The Icterids are a group of small to medium, often colourful passerine birds restricted to the New World and include the grackles, New World blackbirds, and New World orioles. Most species have black as a predominant plumage colour, often enlivened by yellow, orange or red. There are 98 species world wide, 25 North American Species, and 15 Oklahoma species.

*Bobolink, "Dolichonyx oryzivorus"
*Red-winged Blackbird, "Agelaius phoeniceus"
*Eastern Meadowlark, "Sturnella magna"
*Western Meadowlark, "Sturnella neglecta"
*Yellow-headed Blackbird, "Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus"
*Rusty Blackbird, "Euphagus carolinus"
*Brewer's Blackbird, "Euphagus cyanocephalus"
*Common Grackle, "Quiscalus quiscula"
*Great-tailed Grackle, "Quiscalus mexicanus"
*Shiny Cowbird, "Molothrus bonariensis" (A)
*Bronzed Cowbird, "Molothrus aeneus" (H)
*Brown-headed Cowbird, "Molothrus ater"
*Orchard Oriole, "Icterus spurius"
*Bullock's Oriole, "Icterus bullockii"
*Baltimore Oriole, "Icterus galbula"

Fringilline Finches, Cardueline Finches, and Allies

Order: PasseriformesFamily: Fringillidae

Finches are seed-eating passerine birds, that are small to moderately large and have a strong beak, usually conical and in some species very large. All have 12 tail feathers and 9 primaries. These birds have a bouncing flight with alternating bouts of flapping and gliding on closed wings, and most sing well. There are 137 species world wide, 23 North American species, and 11 Oklahoma species.

*Pine Grosbeak, "Pinicola enucleator" (H)
*Purple Finch, "Carpodacus purpureus"
*Cassin's Finch, "Carpodacus cassinii"
*House Finch, "Carpodacus mexicanus"
*Red Crossbill, "Loxia curvirostra"
*White-winged Crossbill, "Loxia leucoptera" (A)
*Common Redpoll, "Carduelis flammea" (A)
*Pine Siskin, "Carduelis pinus"
*Lesser Goldfinch, "Carduelis psaltria"
*American Goldfinch, "Carduelis tristis"
*Evening Grosbeak, "Coccothraustes vespertinus"

Old World sparrows

Order: PasseriformesFamily: Passeridae

Old World sparrows are small passerine birds. In general, sparrows tend to be small plump brownish or greyish birds with short tails and short powerful beaks. Sparrows are seed-eaters, and they also consume small insects. There are 35 species world wide, 2 North American species, and 1 Oklahoma species.

*House Sparrow, "Passer domesticus (I)"

ee also

*List of North American birds


*Oklahoma Bird Records Committee. "Date Guide to the Occurrences of Birds in Oklahoma", 4th Edition. Tulsa, Oklahoma, Oklahoma Ornithological Society, 2004.
* [ "The A.O.U. Check-list of North American birds", seventh edition] - the official source on the taxonomy of birds found in North and Middle America.
*"Splitting headaches? Recent taxonomic changes affecting the British and Western Palaearctic lists" - Martin Collinson, British Birds vol 99 (June 2006), 306-323

External links

* [ Oklahoma Bird Records Committee's Official Oklahoma Bird List]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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