BIRDS of BIG MORONGO CANYON PRESERVE

 
 

Guide to the Birds at Big Morongo Canyon Preserve and adjacent Covington Park

Big Morongo Canyon Preserve is an internationally-recognized birding site.  Several rare or unusual species are known to nest here, and many other species are abundant during the spring and fall migration seasons. The Preserve has been designated as one of the United States' Important Bird Areas by the American Bird Conservancy, the American Birding Association, and Watchable Wildlife National Program, and is featured in the National Geographic Guide to Birdwatching SitesClick here to see the scheduled bird walks on the BMCP Forum Calendar.

Status is listed below for each of the 254 species recorded in Morongo Valley, California.  Click on any bird listed in blue to see its description in the Cornell Lab bird guide - close the new window to return to this list.  You may click on "View Codes" at any time to see the status codes, then use your browser's "Back" button to return to your place in the list.

FREQUENCY OF OBSERVATIONS

The first letter reflects abundance

C   Common - usually encountered under appropriate conditions
F    Fairly Common - often encountered under appropriate conditions
U   Uncommon - sometimes encountered under appropriate conditions
R    Rare - not often encountered, but of regular or near regular occurrence
X     Extremely rare or accidental - only a  few records at most

NORMAL SEASONAL OCCURRENCE

The second letter shows season

y      year round resident
s      summer visitant
w     winter visitant
t       spring and/or fall transient

NESTING STATUS
*    Known to nest in area

BIRDS SEEN RECENTLY 
Shown in BLUE  (Updated 12/11/2014)

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Ducks, Geese, Swans

Canada Goose........................................ Xt
Cinnamon Teal.......................................Xt

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New World Quail

Gambel’s Quail..................................... Cy*
Mountain Quail.................................... Ry*
California Quail.................................... Ry

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Pelicans

American White Pelican..........................Rt

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Cormorants

Double-crested Cormorant......................Xt

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Herons, Bitterns, Allies

American Bittern.................................... Xt
Black-crowned Night-Heron.....................Xt
Green Heron........................................... Rt
Cattle Egret............................................. Xt
Snowy Egret............................................ Xt
Great Egret.............................................. Xt
Great Blue Heron.................................... Rt

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Creepers

Brown Creeper.....................................Rw

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Nuthatches

White-breasted Nuthatch.....................Uw
Red-breasted Nuthatch.........................Rt
Pygmy Nuthatch....................................Xt

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Wrens

House Wren.........................................Fy*
Pacific Wren........................................Xw
Winter Wren........................................Xw
Bewick’s Wren......................................Cy*
Cactus Wren.........................................Fy*
Rock Wren...........................................Uy*
Canyon Wren.......................................Ry*
Marsh Wren.........................................Uy*

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Kinglets

Golden-crowned Kinglet.......................Rw
Ruby-crowned Kinglet..........................Cw

 

View Codes

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New World Vultures

Turkey Vulture...................................... Ct

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Hawks, Kites, Eagles, Allies 

Osprey...................................................Xt
White-tailed Kite................................... Rt
Northern Harrier.................................. Ut
Golden Eagle........................................ Ry*
Bald Eagle..............................................Xt
Sharp-shinned Hawk........................... Uw
Cooper’s Hawk..................................... Fy*
Zone-tailed Hawk.................................. Xt
Broad-winged Hawk.............................. Xt
Red-shouldered Hawk........................... Uy
Red-tailed Hawk................................... Fy*
Swainson’s Hawk................................... Rt
Ferruginous Hawk................................ Xw
Common Black-Hawk............................. Xt

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Falcons

American Kestrel..................................Fy*
Merlin..................................................Xw
Prairie Falcon.......................................Ry*
Peregrine Falcon...................................Xt

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Gnatcatchers

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher..........................Ry*
Black-tailed Gnatcatcher......................Uy*

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Thrushes

Western Bluebird..........................Cw, Rs*
Mountain Bluebird...............................Rw
Townsend’s Solitaire............................Rw
Swainson’s Thrush..........................Ut, Rs*
Hermit Thrush......................................Fw
Varied Thrush.......................................Xt
American Robin.....................................Fw

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Mockingbirds, Thrashers

Northern Mockingbird..........................Cy*
Brown Thrasher...................................Xw
Sage Thrasher.......................................Rt
Bendire’s Thrasher...............................Xt
California Thrasher..............................Cy*
Crissal Thrasher...................................Xw
Le Conte’s Thrasher..............................Xt

View Codes

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Rails, Gallinules, Coots

Black Rail..............................................Xt
Virginia Rail..........................................Fy*
Sora......................................................Rw

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Plovers

Killdeer.................................................Rt

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Gulls, Terns, Skimmers

Ring-billed Gull.....................................Rt
California Gull.......................................Xt
Caspian Tern.........................................Xt

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Pigeons, Doves

Band-tailed Pigeon................................Xs
Mourning Dove.....................................Fy*
White-winged Dove.........................Rs, Xw
Common Ground-Dove..........................Rt

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Cuckoos, Roadrunners

Yellow-billed Cuckoo..............................Xt
Greater Roadrunner.............................Ry*

View Codes

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Pipits

American Pipit......................................Ut

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Waxwings

Cedar Waxwing.....................................Fw

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Silky-flycatchers

Phainopepla........................................Fy*

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Wood-Warblers

Prothonotary Warbler..........................Xt
Blue-winged Warbler............................Xt
Golden-winged Warbler........................Xt
Tennessee Warbler...............................Xt
Orange-crowned Warbler.................Ct,Uw
Nashville Warbler................................Ut
Virginia’s Warbler................................Xt
Lucy’s Warbler.....................................Rs*
Northern Parula...................................Xt
Chestnut-sided Warbler........................Xt
Cape May Warbler.................................Xt
Yellow-rumped Warbler
     Audubon’s Warbler...........................Cw
     Myrtle Warbler..................................Rt
Black-and-White Warbler.................Rt,Xw
Black-throated Blue Warbler............Xt,Xw

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Barn Owls

Barn Owl..............................................Fy*

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Typical Owls

Long-eared Owl....................................Us*
Great Horned Owl................................Uy*
Western Screech-Owl............................Ry
Northern Saw-whet Owl........................Xw

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Goatsuckers

Lesser Nighthawk................................ Us*
Common Poorwill.................................Us*

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Swifts

Vaux’s Swift..........................................Rt
White-throated Swift............................ Uy
Black Swift............................................Xt

View Codes

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Wood-Warblers (cont.)

Blackburnian Warbler.........................Xt
Black-throated Gray Warbler............Ft,Xw
Townsend’s Warbler.............................Ut
Hermit Warbler....................................Ut
Black-throated Green Warbler..............Xt
Yellow-throated Warbler......................Xt
Bay-breasted Warbler...........................Xt
Blackpoll Warbler.................................Xt
Palm Warbler.......................................Xt
Yellow Warbler....................................Cs*
MacGillivray’s Warbler.........................Ut
Kentucky Warbler................................Xt
Canada Warbler...................................Xt
Wilson’s Warbler.............................Ct, Xs
Hooded Warbler...................................Xt
Worm-eating Warbler...........................Xt
Ovenbird..............................................Xt
Northern Waterthrush.........................Rt
Common Yellowthroat..........................Fy*
Yellow-breasted Chat............................Fs*
American Redstart...............................Rt
Painted Redstart..................................Xt
Red-faced Warbler...............................Xt

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Hummingbirds

Broad-billed Hummingbird....................Xt
Black-chinned Hummingbird................Fs*
Costa’s Hummingbird........................... Fy*
Anna’s Hummingbird........................... Cy*
Calliope Hummingbird.......................... Rt
Rufous Hummingbird............................Ft
Allen’s Hummingbird.............................Xt
Broad-tailed Hummingbird.................... Xt

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Kingfishers

Belted Kingfisher...................................Rt

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Woodpeckers, Allies

Acorn Woodpecker.................................Xt
Lewis’s Woodpecker..............................Xw
Northern Flicker
   Yellow-shafted Flicker..........................Xt
   Red-shafted Flicker.......................Fw,Rs*
Gilded Flicker........................................Rt
Williamson’s Sapsucker.........................Xt
Red-breasted Sapsucker.......................Uw
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker......................Xw
Red-naped Sapsucker...........................Uw
Ladder-backed Woodpecker..................Fy*
Nuttall’s Woodpecker............................Fy*
Hairy Woodpecker................................Xw

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Tanagers

Summer Tanager.................................Fs*
Hepatic Tanager...................................Xt
Scarlet Tanager....................................Xt
Western Tanager..................................Ft

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Emberizids

Green-tailed Towhee.......................Rt, Xw
California Towhee...............................Fy*
Spotted Towhee...................................Fy*
Rufous-crowned Sparrow.....................Ry
Chipping Sparrow............................Ut,Rw
Clay-colored Sparrow...........................Xt
Brewer’s Sparrow................................Uw
Lark Sparrow......................................Uy*
Black-chinned Sparrow........................Rs*
Black-throated Sparrow.......................Cy*
Sage Sparrow......................................Rw
Grasshopper Sparrow..........................Xt
Fox Sparrow........................................Uw
Lark Bunting.......................................Xt
Savannah Sparrow..............................Fw
Lincoln’s Sparrow................................Fw

View Codes

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Tyrant Flycatchers

Olive-sided Flycatcher............................Ut
Western Wood-Pewee.............................Ct
Willow Flycatcher.............................Ft, Rs*
Least Flycatcher....................................Xt
Hammond’s Flycatcher....................Ut, Xw
Gray Flycatcher...............................Ut, Xw
Dusky Flycatcher...................................Ut
Pacific-slope Flycatcher....................Ct, Xw
Eastern Phoebe....................................Xt
Black Phoebe....................................... Fy*
Say’s Phoebe........................................Uy*
Vermilion Flycatcher.....................Us*, Rw
Brown-crested Flycatcher.....................Fs*
Ash-throated Flycatcher.......................Fs*
Western Kingbird................................ Fs*
Cassin’s Kingbird.................................Fs*
Eastern Kingbird................................. Xt
Scissor-tailed Flycatcher.......................Xt

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Shrikes

Loggerhead Shrike...............................Uy*

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Vireos

Yellow-throated Vireo............................Xt
Bell’s Vireo...........................................Rs* Hutton’s Vireo.......................................Xt
Blue-headed Vireo.................................Xt
Plumbeous Vireo...................................Ut
Cassin’s Vireo........................................Ft
Red-eyed Vireo......................................Xt
Philadelphia Vireo................................Xt
Warbling Vireo......................................Ct

View Codes

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Emberizids (Cont.)

Song Sparrow.......................................Cy*
Vesper Sparrow...............................Ut, Rw
Swamp Sparrow....................................Xw
Harris’s Sparrow..................................Xw
White-throated Sparrow.......................Rt
White-crowned Sparrow.......................Cw
Golden-crowned Sparrow.....................Uw
Dark Eyed Junco
     Oregon Junco....................................Fw
     Gray-headed Junco...........................Rw
     Slate-colored Junco...........................Rw
     Pink-sided Junco...............................Rw

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Grosbeaks, Buntings

Rose-breasted Grosbeak.......................Xt
Black-headed Grosbeak........................Ft
Blue Grosbeak.....................................Us*
Indigo Bunting....................................Rs*
Lazuli Bunting....................................Us*
Dickcissel.............................................Xt

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Blackbirds, Orioles

Bobolink..............................................Xt
Western Meadowlark...........................Uy
Yellow-headed Blackbird......................Rt
Red-winged Blackbird..........................Uy
Common Grackle..................................Xt
Great-tailed Grackle.............................Ry
Rusty Blackbird....................................Xt
Brewer’s Blackbird..............................Fy*
Brown-headed Cowbird..................Fs*,Rw
Bronzed Cowbird.................................Xt
Orchard Oriole.................................... Xt
Hooded Oriole.....................................Fs*
Baltimore Oriole..................................Xt
Bullock’s Oriole...................................Fs*
Scott’s Oriole................................Us*,Rw

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Crows, Jays

Steller’s Jay..........................................Xw
Clark’s Nutcracker................................Xw
Western Scrub-Jay................................Fy*
Pinyon Jay............................................Xt
American Crow..................................... Ry
Common Raven.................................... Fy*

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Larks

Horned Lark..........................................Rt

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Swallows

Tree Swallow.........................................Ut
Violet-green Swallow............................. Ut
Bank Swallow........................................Xt
Cliff Swallow..........................................Ut
Northern Rough-winged Swallow...........Ut
Barn Swallow........................................ Ut

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Babblers

Wrentit................................................Xw

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Chickadees, Titmice

Oak Titmouse.......................................Uy*
Mountain Chickadee.......................Uw,Rs*

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Verdins

Verdin..................................................Cy*

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Bushtits

Bushtit.................................................Cy*

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Finches

Purple Finch........................................Ut
Cassin’s Finch.....................................Rw
House Finch.......................................Cy*
Red Crossbill.......................................Xw
Pine Siskin...........................................Fw
American Goldfinch.............................Rw
Lesser Goldfinch.................................Cy*
Lawrence’s Goldfinch..........................Fs*
Evening Grosbeak................................Xt

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Non-Native Species

Rock Pigeon........................................Cy*
Spotted Dove.......................................Ry
Eurasian Collared-Dove.......................Ry
European Starling...............................Cy*
House Sparrow...................................Cy*

 

 

 

View Codes

Compiled by: Margaret Hoggan, Kurt Leuschner, and Dee Zeller
for the Friends of Big Morongo Canyon Preserve

Revised December 2010

For a listing of only the RECENTLY SEEN species, select one of the sort options below, then click "Display List" :
  Same order as above list   
  Sort by species' first name

Note: The above "Recently Seen" list includes only those birds
on the BMCP bird list - it is not intended to be a Rare Bird Alert.
To see the RBA for inland southern California, click HERE.


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