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Thread: yard list

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Staten Island, NY

    Default yard list

    Not sure if this topic has been touched here but I a curious what are the biggest yard list from around the country that people have ammassed. For me the definition of a yard list is any bird that i have seen from my property. I live in Staten Island, NY and in 6 years have gotten 161 species of birds in my yard with some really good ones included in there such as Cerulean Warbler 2 years in a row(this is great if you know NY City birding), Brewers Blackbird, Swainson's Hawk, Yellow-throated Warbler, Northern Sawhet Owl, Bicknells Thrush and many others. One of the things that I find so amazing is the fact that I have had more Scarlet Tanagers in my yard at one time than I have seen anywhere else, ever. I had more than 20 in view at the same time on the same day. I also had 12 Rose-breasted Grosbeaks the same day. Anyway, I live at the northern tip of the island, at the top of a wooded hill, just before you get to NY Harbor so I am in a great migration spot. It never ceases to amaze me how many things can be seen in one place if you just take the time to look up.

    Could others share their list, and be sure to include where you are located, highlights and the amount of time you have been keeping the list.

  2. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2010

    Default Yard lists or garden lists as we Limeys say

    Mine is presently at 71 after four and a half years. Location is crucial for getting your numbers up and since my garden is in an inland county itself in the middle of England (South Derbyshire) this count is pretty respectable.

    Some of the best birds were one minute wonders (Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Hawfinch, Willow Tit) seen just once in the whole period and others are indicative of location (only one wader so far - Northern Lapwing and one duck - Mallard).

    Others have been regular but nevertheless fabulous. A cock Pheasant strutting his stuff followed by his harem of hens and a male Sparrowhawk bathing in the bird tub just eight feet from the kitchen window.

    Getting to 80 is going to take some doing....

    Cheers T

  3. #3
    Senior Member AndyB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005


    Just moved 3 months ago (Los Angeles) and have a US yard list for the first time. Am at 63 species, so seems like 100 is possible. Highlights have been a wintering vagrant Indigo Bunting (probably the rarest bird I'll ever see in the yard and seen on the 2nd day!). Past couple of weeks have been enjoying the trickle of western migrants, such as Black-headed Grosbeak, Western Tanager, Lazuli Bunting, Black-throated Gray Warbler and others.

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Staten Island, NY

    Default yard list

    So I am surprised that more people do not post more or or not more fanatical about their yard list. I often forgo birding in local parks so stay work on the yard list. I keep a year list and life list in the yard. It is my most important list that I keep. State list second and life list 3rd. I have recorded between 105 and 131 species on the 5 years that I have kept a year yard list. I also recently got my 162nd yard bird, a fly over Greater Yellowlegs.

  5. #5
    Senior Member AndyB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005


    with a young family, it's pretty much the only birding I do these days. Being less than a mile from the LA river, hope to add a few species on call as flyovers this fall. Just had a Barn Owl a couple of hours ago to bring me up to 64. Got some catching up to do. Can you post your entire list here? Curious what's on there

  6. #6
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Staten Island, NY

    Default yard list

    Its long but here is the list of all birds seen so far. My computer crashed and the hard drive went so I lost the dates on the beginning birds.
    1. Red-throated Loon
    2. Common Loon
    3. Great Cormorant
    4. Double-crested Cormorant
    5. Black-crowned Night-Heron
    6. Green-backed Heron
    7. Snowy Egret
    8. Great Egret
    9. Great Blue Heron
    10. Glossy Ibis
    11. Canada Goose
    12. Brant
    13. Mallard
    14. American Black Duck
    15. Greater Scaup
    16. Bufflehead
    17. Red-breasted Merganser
    18. Turkey Vulture
    19. Osprey
    20. Bald Eagle
    21. Sharp-shined Hawk
    22. Cooperís Hawk
    23. Northern Goshawk
    24. Broad-winged Hawk
    25. Red-shouldered Hawk
    26. Red-tailed Hawk
    27. American Kestrel
    28. Merlin
    29. Peregrine Falcon
    30. American Golden-Plover
    31. Lesser Yellowlegs
    32. Laughing Gull
    33. Ring-billed Gull
    34. Herring Gull
    35. Great Black-backed Gull
    36. Rock Pigeon
    37. Mourning Dove
    38. Black-billed Cuckoo
    39. Northern Saw-whet Owl
    40. Common Nighthawk
    41. Chimney Swift
    42. Ruby-throated Hummingbird
    43. Red-bellied Woodpecker
    44. Northern Flicker
    45. Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
    46. Downy Woodpecker
    47. Eastern Wood-Pewee
    48. Alder Flycatcher
    49. Least Flycatcher
    50. Eastern Phoebe
    51. Great Crested Flycatcher
    52. Eastern Kingbird
    53. Blue-headed Vireo
    54. Yellow-throated Vireo
    55. Red-eyed Vireo
    56. Philadelphia Vireo
    57. Warbling Vireo
    58. Blue Jay
    59. American Crow
    60. Fish Crow
    61. Tree Swallow
    62. Purple Martin
    63. Barn Swallow
    64. Tufted Titmouse
    65. Black-capped Chickadee
    66. Brown Creeper
    67. White-breasted Nuthatch
    68. Red-breasted Nuthatch
    69. House Wren
    70. Winter Wren
    71. Carolina Wren
    72. Golden-crowned Kinglet
    73. Ruby-crowned Kinglet
    74. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
    75. Wood Thrush
    76. Veery
    77. Gray-cheeked Thrush
    78. Swainsonís Thrush
    79. Hermit Thrush
    80. American Robin
    81. Gray Catbird
    82. Northern Mockingbird
    83. Brown Thrasher
    84. European Starling
    85. Cedar Waxwing
    86. Blue-winged Warbler
    87. Nashville Warbler
    88. Northern Parula
    89. Chestnut-sided Warbler
    90. Cape May Warbler
    91. Magnolia Warbler
    92. Yellow-rumped Warbler
    93. Black-and-white Warbler
    94. Black-throated Blue Warbler
    95. Blackburnian Warbler
    96. Black-throated Green Warbler
    97. Yellow-throated Warbler
    98. Bay-breasted Warbler
    99. Blackpoll Warbler
    100. Palm Warbler
    101. Yellow Warbler
    102. Canada Warbler
    103. Wilsonís Warbler
    104. Ovenbird
    105. Northern Waterthrush
    106. Common Yellowthroat
    107. American Redstart
    108. Scarlet Tanager
    109. Eastern Towhee
    110. Field Sparrow
    111. Chipping Sparrow
    112. Fox Sparrow
    113. Song Sparrow
    114. Swamp Sparrow
    115. White-throated Sparrow
    116. White-crowned Sparrow
    117. Dark-eyed Junco
    118. Rose-breasted Grosbeak
    119. Northern Cardinal
    120. Red-winged Blackbird
    121. Common Grackle
    122. Rusty Blackbird
    123. Brown-headed Cowbird
    124. Orchard Oriole
    125. Baltimore Oriole
    126. Purple Finch
    127. House Finch
    128. Pine Siskin
    129. American Goldfinch
    130. House Sparrow
    131. Pine Warbler (4/12/08)
    132. Eastern Bluebird (5-4/24/08 Flying over and calling in flock)
    133. Praire Warbler (1-4/24)
    134. Indigo Bunting (1-5/8)
    135. Short-billed Dowitcher (5-5/8/08)
    136. Yellow-billed Cuckoo (1-5/8/08)
    137. Worm-eating Warbler (5/11/08)
    138. Summer Tanager (2-5/14/08)
    139. Black-bellied Plover (1-5/14/08)
    140. Willow Flycatcher (1-5/18/08)
    141. Yellow-bellied Flycatcher (1-5/20/08)
    142. Tennessee Warbler (1-5/22/08)
    143. Cerulean Warbler (1-5/22/08)
    144. Lincolnís Sparrow (1-5/22/08)
    145. Acadian Flycatcher (1-5/27/08)
    146. Bicknells Thrush
    147. Snow Goose
    148. Oldsquaw (1-2/16/09)
    149. Rough-legged Hawk (1 light morph 3/23/09)
    150. Brewers Blackbird (1-4/7/09)
    151. Common Merganser (10-4/17/09)
    152. Northern Rough-winged Swallow (3-4/19/09)
    153. Black Vulture (3-4/25/09)
    154. Orange-crowned Warbler (1-5/8/09)
    155. Olive-sided Flycatcher (1-5/15/09)
    156. Bobolink (1-5/24/09 flyover calling)
    157. Northern Harrier (1-9/18/09)
    158. Swainsonís Hawk (1-4/29/2010)
    159. Northern Shoveler (3-4/30/2010)
    160. Killdeer (2-11/24/10)
    161. Hairy Woodpecker (1-12/11/10)
    162. Greater Yellowlegs (1-5/1/2011)

  7. #7
    Senior Member AndyB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005


    That's a great list and a few lifers on there for me. After 3 months, here's mine. I will really need to work on my shorebird calls to see if I can add a few fly-overs during the late summer. Any when will I ever get a House Sparrow??

    Canada Goose
    Great Blue Heron
    Great Egret
    Double-crested Cormorant
    Turkey Vulture
    Cooper's Hawk
    Swainson's Hawk
    Red-tailed hawk
    California Gull
    Western Gull
    Feral Pigeon
    Band-tailed Pigeon
    Mourning Dove
    Yellow-chevroned Parakeet
    Great Horned Owl
    Vaux's Swift
    White-throated Swift
    Anna's Hummingbird
    Allen's Hummingbird
    Acorn Woodpecker
    Nuttall's Woodpecker
    Northern Flicker
    Black Phoebe
    Bell's Vireo
    Warbling Vireo
    Scrub Jay
    American Crow
    Cedar Waxwing
    Oak Titmouse
    Northern Rough-winged Swallow
    Cliff Swallow
    Ruby-crowned Kinglet
    Bewick's Wren
    Northern Mockingbird
    Hermit Thrush
    Lesser Goldfinch
    House Finch
    Orange-crowned Warbler
    Nashville Warbler
    Yellow-rumped Warbler
    Black-throated Gray Warbler
    Townsend's Warbler
    Wilson's Warbler
    Hooded Oriole
    Bullock's Oriole
    Brown-headed Cowbird
    Song Sparrow
    Lincoln's Sparrow
    White-crowned Sparrow
    Dark-eyed Junco
    Spotted Towhee
    California Towhee
    Western Tanager
    Black-headed Grosbeak
    Indigo Bunting
    Lazuli Bunting

  8. #8
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Staten Island, NY

    Default yard list

    boy would I love to add those birds to my yard list. I would be the man in NY and of course no one would ever believe me. Its great to see what will fly over your place. Makes it fun for a guy that has 2 jobs and 2 young kids as well. Really not much time to do other birding.

  9. #9
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Ontario, Canada


    I live in south-central Ontario on an ex-horse-farm, which is about half pasture and half forested. We have been feeding birds for the 11 years that we have lived here and have a yard list of 154 species. I should qualify that a "yard" list, to me, includes any species seen, or heard, while I am on my property. The birds may be high-altitude flyovers or even visible on adjoining properties. Hey, it's my list, so my rules...

    I have some notables such as Snowy, Long-eared, and Barred Owls, Sandhill Crane, White-winged Crossbill, Woodcock, Wild Turkey (at the backyard feeders), Pileated Woodpecker, Bohemian Waxwing (many hundreds one year), Pine and Evening Grosbeaks, Goshawk, Osprey, and many others. On the other hand, I'm still missing many that should be easy (many of the warblers, some ducks, etc.).

    The yard list has pretty much become my favourite list to keep and build.


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