An Annotated Checklist of the Birds of
the Cedar Creek Natural History Area

James L. Howitz and David Bosanko
December 1987
Revised January 1909, 1996

Introduction
Codes used to denote the status of bird species
Print version of Annotated Checklist (PDF)

Click on Orders, Families, or Subfamilies to learn more
about species present at Cedar Creek Natural History Area.

 
Loons  (Order Gaviiformes, Family Gaviidae)
          Common Loon, Gavia immer
Grebes (Order Podicipediformes, Family Podicipedidae)
          Pied-billed Grebe, Podilymbus podiceps
          Horned Grebe, Podiceps auritus
          Red-necked Grebe, P. grisegena
Pelicans, Anhingas, Cormorants, etc. (Order Pelecaniformes)  
     Cormorants (Family Phalacrocoracidae)  
          Double-crested Cormorant, Phalacrocorax auritus
Storks, Herons, Bitterns, etc. (Order Ciconiiformes)
     Herons, Bitterns (Family Ardedidae)
          American Bittern, Botaurus lentiginosus
          Least Bittern, Ixobrychus exilis
          Great Blue Heron, Ardea herodias
          Great Egret, Casmerodius albus
          Cattle Egret, Bubulcus ibis
          Green Heron, Butorides striatus
          Black-crowned Night-Heron, Nycticorax nycticorax
          Yellow-crowned Night-Heron, N. violaceus
Ducks, Geese, Swans, Screamers (Order Anseriformes)
     Ducks, Geese, Swans (Family Anatidae)
     Geese, Swans (Subfamily Anserinae) 
          Tundra Swan, Cygnus columbianus
          Trumpeter Swan, C. buccinator
          Greater White-fronted Goose, Anser albifrons
          Snow Goose, Chen caerulescens
          Canada Goose, Branta canadensis
     Ducks (Subfamily Anatinae)
          Wood Duck, Aix sponsa
          Green-winged Teal, Anas crecca
          American Black Duck, A. rubripes
          Mallard, A. platyrhynchos
          Northern Pintail, A. acuta
          Blue-winged Teal, A. discors
          Northern Shoveler, A. clypeata
          Gadwall, A. strepera
          American Wigeon, A. americana
          Canvasback, Aythya valisineria
          Redhead, A. americana
          Ring-necked Duck, A. collaris
          Lesser Scaup,  A. affinis 
          Common Goldeneye, Bucephala clangula
          Bufflehead, B. albeola
          Hooded Merganser, Lophodytes cucullatus
          Common Merganser, Mergus merganser
          Red-breasted Merganser, M. serrator
          Ruddy Duck, Oxyura jamaicensis
Vultures, Hawks, Falcons, Ospreys, etc. (Order Falconiformes)
     New World Vultures (Family Cathartidae)
          Turkey Vulture, Cathartes aura 
     Ospreys, Hawks, Eagles, etc. (Family Accipitridae)  
     Ospreys (Subfamily Pandioninae)  
          Osprey, Pandion haliaetus
     Hawks, Eagles, Kites, etc. (Subfamily Accipitrinae)
          American Swallow-tailed Kite, Elanoides forficatus
          Bald Eagle, Haliaeetus leucocephalus
          Northern Harrier, Circus cyaneus
          Sharp-shinned Hawk, Accipiter striatus
          Cooper's Hawk, A. cooperii
          Northern Goshawk, A. gentilis
          Red-shouldered Hawk, Buteo lineatus
          Broad-winged Hawk, B. platypterus
          Red-tailed Hawk, B. jamaicensis
          Rough-legged Hawk, B. lagopus
          Golden Eagle, Aquila chrysaetos
     Falcons (Family Falconidae)
          American Kestrel, Falco sparverius
          Merlin, F. columbarius
Pheasants, Quail, Grouse, Turkeys, etc. (Order Galliformes, Family Phasianidae)
     Pheasants, Quail (Subfamily Phasianinae)
          Ring-necked Pheasant, Phasianus colchicus
     Grouse (Subfamily Tetraoninae)
          Spruce Grouse, Dendragapus canadensis
          Ruffed Grouse, Bonasa umbellus
     Turkeys (Subfamily Meleagridinae)
          Wild Turkey, Meleagris gallopavo
Cranes, Rails, etc. (Order Gruiformes)
     Rails (Family Rallidae)
          Virginia Rail, Rallus limicola
          Sora, Porzana carolina
          American Coot, Fulica americana
     Cranes (Family Gruidae) 
          Sandhill Crane, Grus canadensis
Plovers, Sandpipers, Gulls, Terns, etc. (Order Charadriiformes)
     Plovers (Family Charadriidae)
          Killdeer, Charadrius vociferus
     Sandpipers (Family Scolopacidae)
          Greater Yellowlegs, Tringa melanoleuca
          Solitary Sandpiper, T. solitaria
          Spotted Sandpiper, Actitis macularia
          Upland Sandpiper, Bartramia longicauda
          Western Sandpiper, Calidris mauri
          Short-billed Dowitcher, Limnodromus griseus
          Common Snipe, Gallinago gallinago
          American Woodcock, Scolopax minor
     Gulls, Terns, Jaegers (Family Laridae)
     Gulls (Subfamily Larinae)
          Franklin's Gull, Larus pipixcan
          Bonaparte's Gull, L. philadelphia
          Ring-billed Gull, L. delawarensis
          Herring Gull, L. argentatus
     Terns (Subfamily Sterninae)
          Common Tern, Sterna hirundo
          Forster's Tern, S. forsteri
          Black Tern, Chlidonias niger
Pigeons, Doves (Order Columbiformes)
     Pigeons, Doves (Family Columbidae)
          Rock Dove, Columba livia
          Mourning Dove, Zenaida macroura
Cuckoos (Order Cuculiformes, Family Cuculidae)
          Black-billed Cuckoo, Coccyzus erythropthalmus
          Yellow-billed Cuckoo, C. americanus
Owls (Order Strigiformes, Family Strigidae)
          Eastern Screech-Owl, Otus asio
          Great Horned Owl, Bubo virginianus
          Barred Owl, Strix varia
          Great Gray Owl, S. nebulosa
          Long-eared Owl, Asio otus
          Short-eared Owl, A. flammeus
          Northern Saw-whet Owl, Aegolius acadicus
Goatsuckers, etc. (Order Caprimulgiformes)
     Goatsuckers (Family Caprimulgidae)
          Common Nighthawk, Cordeiles minor
          Whip-poor-will, Caprimulgus vociferus 
Swifts, Hummingbirds (Order Apodiformes)
     Swifts (Family Apodidae)
          Chimney Swift, Chaetura pelagica
     Hummingbirds (Family Trochilidae)
          Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Archilochus colubris
Rollers, Bee-eaters, Kingfishers, etc. (Order Coraciiformes)
     Kingfishers (Family Alcedinidae)
          Belted Kingfisher, Ceryle alcyon
Woodpeckers, Barbets, Toucans, etc. (Order Piciformes)
     Woodpeckers (Family Picidae)
          Red-headed Woodpecker, Melanerpes erythrocephalus
          Red-bellied Woodpecker, M. carolinus
          Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Sphyrapicus varius
          Downy Woodpecker, Picoides pubescens
          Hairy Woodpecker, P. villosus
          Black-backed Woodpecker, P. arcticus
          Pileated Woodpecker, Dryocopus pileatus
Passerines (Order Passeriformes)
     Tyrant Flycatchers (Family Tyrannidae)
          Acadian Flycatcher, E. virescens
          Alder Flycatcher, E. alnorum
          Eastern Kingbird, T. tyrannus
          Eastern Phoebe, Sayornis phoebe
          Eastern Wood Peewee, C. virens
          Great Crested Flycatcher, Myiarchus crinitus
          Least Flycatcher, E. minimus
          Olive-sided Flycatcher, Contopus borealis
          Western Kingbird, Tyrannus verticalis
          Yellow-bellied Flycatcher, Empidonax flaviventris
     Larks (Family Alaudidae)
          Horned Lark, Eremophila alpestris
     Swallows (Family Hirundinidae)
          Purple Martin, Progne subis
          Tree Swallow, Tachycineta bicolor
          Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Stelgidopteryx serripennis
          Bank Swallow, Riparia riparia
          Cliff Swallow, Hirundo pyrrhonota
          Barn Swallow, H. rustica
     Crows, Jays (Family Corvidae)
          Blue Jay, Cyanocitta cristata
          Gray Jay, Perisoreus canadensis
          Black-billed Magpie, Pica pica
          American Crow, Corvus brachyrhynchos
          Northern Raven, C. corax
     Chickadees, Titmice (Family Paridae)
          Black-capped Chickadee, Parus atricapillus
          Tufted Titmouse, P. bicolor
     Nuthatches (Family Sittidae)
          Red-breasted Nuthatch, Sitta canadensis
          White-breasted Nuthatch, S. carolinensis
     Creepers (Family Certhiidae)
          Brown Creeper, Certhia americana
     Wrens (Family Troglodytidae)
          House Wren, Troglodytes aedon
          Winter Wren, T. troglodytes
          Sedge Wren, Cistothorus platensis
          Marsh Wren, C. palustris
     Thrushes, Old World Warblers, etc. (Family Muscicapidae)
     Gnatcatchers, Kinglets (Subfamily Sylviinae)
          Golden-crowned Kinglet, Regulus satrapa
          Ruby-crowned Kinglet, R. calendula
          Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Polioptila caerulea
     Thrushes (Subfamily Turdinae)
          American Robin, Turdus migratorius
          Eastern Bluebird, Sialia sialis
          Gray-cheeked Thrush, C. minimus
          Hermit Thrush, C. guttatus
          Swainson's Thrush, C. ustulatus
          Townsend's Solitaire, Myadestes townsendi
          Varied Thrush, Ixoreus naevius
          Veery, Catharus fuscescens
          Wood Thrush, Hylocicla mustelina
     Mockingbirds, Thrashers (Family Mimidae)
          Gray Catbird, Dumetella carolinensis
          Brown Thrasher, Toxostoma rufum
     Waxwings (Family Bombycillidae)
          Bohemian Waxwing, Bombycilla garrulus
          Cedar Waxwing, B. cedrorum
     Shrikes (Family Laniidae)
          Northern Shrike, Lanius excubitor
          Loggerhead Shrike, L. ludovicianus
     Starlings (Family Sturnidae)
          European Starling, Sturnus vulgaris
     Vireos (Family Vireonidae)
          Red-eyed Vireo, Vireo olivaceus
          Solitary Vireo, V. solitarius
          Yellow-throated Vireo, V. flavifrons
          Warbling Vireo, V. gilvus
          Philadelphia Vireo, V. philadelphicus
     Wood Warblers, Tanagers, Blackbirds, etc. (Family Emberizidae)
     Wood Warblers (Subfamily Parulinae)
          American Redstart, Setophaga ruticilla
          Bay-breasted Warbler, Dendroica castanea
          Black-and-White Warbler, Mniotilta varia
          Blackburnian Warbler, Dendroica fusca
          Blackpoll Warbler, D. striata
          Black-throated Blue Warbler, D. caerulescens 
          Black-throated Green Warbler, D. virens
          Blue-winged Warbler, Vermivora pinus
          Canada Warbler, Wilsonia canadensis
          Cape May Warbler, Dendroica tigrina
          Cerulean Warbler, D. cerulea
          Chestnut-sided Warbler, D. pensylvanica
          Common Yellowthroat, Geothlypis trichas
          Connecticut Warbler, Oporornis agilis
          Golden-winged Warbler, Vermivora chrysoptera
          Hooded Warbler, Wilsonia citrina
          Magnolia Warbler, Dendroica magnolia
          Mourning Warbler, Oporornis philadelphia
          Nashville Warbler, Vermivora ruficapilla
          Northern Parula, Parula americana
          Northern Waterthrush, Seiurus noveboracensis
          Orange-crowned Warbler, Vermivora celata
          Ovenbird, Seiurus aurocapillus
          Palm Warbler, Dendroica palmarum
          Pine Warbler, D. pinus
          Prairie Warbler, D. discolor
          Tennessee Warbler, Vermivora peregrina
          Yellow-rumped Warbler, Dendroica coronata
          Yellow Warbler, Dendroica petechia
          Wilson's Warbler, Wilsonia pusilla
     Tanagers (Subfamily Thraupinae)
          Scarlet Tanager, Piranga olivacea
          Western Tanager, P. ludoviciana
     Cardinal Finches (Subfamily Cardinalinae)
          Northern Cardinal, Cardinalis cardinalis
Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Pheucticus ludovicianus
          Indigo Bunting, Passerina cyanea
          Dickcissel, Spiza americana
     Sparrows (Subfamily Emberizinae)
          American Tree Sparrow, Spizella arborea
          Chipping Sparrow, S. passerina x
          Clay-colored Sparrow, S. pallida
          Dark-eyed Junco, Junco hyemalis
          Field Sparrow, S. pusilla
          Fox Sparrow, Passerella iliaca
          Grasshopper Sparrow, Ammodramus savannarum 
          Harris' Sparrow, Z. querula
          Lark Sparrow, Chondestes grammacus
          Lincoln's Sparrow, M. lincolnii
          Rufous-sided Towhee, Pipilo erythrophthalmus
          Savannah Sparrow, Passerculus sandwichensis
          Snow Bunting, Plectrophenax nivalis
          Song Sparrow, Melospiza melodia
          Swamp Sparrow, M. georgiana
          Vesper Sparrow, Pooecetes gramineus
          White-crowned Sparrow, Z. leucophrys
          White-throated Sparrows, Zonotrichia albicollis
     Icterids (Subfamily Icterinae)
          Bobolink, Dolychonyx oryzivorus
          Red-winged Blackbird, Agelaius phoeniceus
          Eastern Meadowlark, Sturnella magna
          Western Meadowlark, S. neglecta
          Yellow-headed Blackbird, Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus
          Rusty Blackbird, Euphagus carolinus
          Brewer's Blackbird, E. cyanocephalus
          Common Grackle, Quiscalus quiscula
          Brown-headed Cowbird, Molothrus ater
          Northern Oriole, Icterus galbula
     Cardueline Finches (Subfamily Carduelinae)
          Pine Grosbeak, Pinicola enucleator
          Purple Finch, Carpodacus purpureus
          House Finch, C. mexicanus
          Red Crossbill, Loxia curvirostra
          White-winged Crossbill, L. leucoptera
          Common Redpoll, Carduelis flammea
          Pine Siskin, C. pinus
          American Goldfinch, C. tristis
          Evening Grosbeak, Coccothraustes vespertina
     Weaver Finches (Family Passeridae)
          House Sparrow, Passer domesticus

 

Introduction

This is a checklist of all species of birds recorded at the University of Minnesota Cedar Creek Natural History Area.

The purposes of this checklist are:

  1. To update "The birds of the Cedar Creek Natural History Area" by Stephen J. Maxson and George-Ann Davis, which appeared in 1974.
  2. To provide a record of the occurrence, abundance, breeding status, and location of the birds of Cedar Creek to allow for comparison with such data in the future, and to have a record of population and range fluctuations for these birds.
  3. To provide a ready reference for potential researchers by listing those species sufficiently common that they could profitably be studied at Cedar Creek.
This work relies heavily on the observations of the many people who have done field work at Cedar Creek, notably Drs. Walter Breckenridge, Mark Fuller, Stephen Maxson, David Parmelee, and Dwain Warner. We thank Drs. Neil Bernstein, Breckenridge, Maxson, and Parmelee for their comments on the manuscript.

The Cedar Creek Natural History Area consists of about 2100 hectares in northern Anoka and southern Isanti Counties, Minnesota. A variety of habitats are present. These include abandoned fields, bur oak savannah, northern pin oak forest, marshes, alder and willow swamps, aspen-birch woodlands, mixed deciduous forest, tamarack swamp, cedar bog, mixed pine woods, black spruce bog, and open water.

 

Codes used to denote the status of bird species

R - permanent resident - found on the area year round; at least some individuals do not migrate from the area.
SR - summer resident - found on the area during the summer, at least during mid-June - mid-July, including species known to breed at Cedar Creek and those without positive breeding evidence.
WV - winter visitant - present on the area during the winter.
M - migrant - present only during spring and/or fall migration.

a - abundant - present in large numbers at the proper time of year, easy to find.
c - common - present in reasonable numbers, not difficult to find.
u - uncommon - present in very small numbers, may be absent in some years,
r - rare - usually absent, includes all species for which there are only one or two or a very few records at a given time of year.
- - absent - no records at that time of year.

*** - nests at Cedar Creek, probably every year.
** - nests at Cedar Creek in some years.
* - nesting at Cedar Creek nearly certain (at least in some years), though there are no records of nests or broods.
( ) - nesting at Cedar Creek possible.
O - does not nest at Cedar Creek.
 

n - nest has been found at Cedar Creek.
b - brood (young out of the nest) has been found at Cedar Creek.
 
 

For each species, the status will be given in winter, spring, summer, and fall. Thus, -, c, r, u denotes a species that is absent in the winter, common during spring migration, rare in the summer, and uncommon in the fall.

The nomenclature and taxonomy follow the sixth edition of the American Ornithologists' Union Checklist of North American Birds, even though erroneous phylogenetic relationships can be inferred using this system.

Marsh nesting species may be much less common on the area or completely absent during severe droughts, as in 1988.

The numbers 24, 26, 76 and 56 refer respectively to Anoka County roads 24, 26, and 76 and Isanti County road 56.