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United States of America

Eagle
Bald Eagle Haliaeetus leucocephalus ©Creative Commons

Birding The United States of America

The US is split into 48 contiguous states, Alaska and the Islands of Hawaii. Each have their own Fatbirder page. States are introduced by local residents and are greatly more comprehensive than this national overview.

Below are links that either cover the whole US or regions larger than a single state.

The recommended books also cover areas larger than a single state.

A number of birding organisations span the entire US - it makes sense for every birder to be a member of a national organisation, a state one and their own local club. Being a member of an Audubon or other society is not just about what it can do for you but, to misquote the late great JFK, it is also about what you can do for it, and through it, the welfare of birds everywhere.

Number of Species

Number of bird species: 1070 (Extant species)

(As at November 2018)

Number of bird species: National Bird

Bald Eagle Haliatus leucocephalus

Endemics

Number of endemics: 16 Mainland Endemics

Carolina Chickadee Poecile carolinensis Red-Cockaded Woodpecker Leuconotopicus borealis Fish Crow Corvus ossifragus Seaside Sparrow Ammodramus maritimus Boat-Tailed Grackle Quiscalus major Salt-Marsh Sparrow Ammodramus caudacutus Yellow-Billed Magpie Pica nuttalli Bachman's Sparrow Peucaea aestivalis Greater Prairie Chicken Tympanuchus cupido Island Scrub Jay Aphelocoma insularis Lesser Prairie Chicken Tympanuchus pallidicinctus Florida Scrub Jay Aphelocoma coerulescens Black Rosy Finch Leucosticte atrata Gunnison Sage Grouse Centrocercus minimus Brown-Capped Rosy Finch Leucosticte australis Cassia Crossbill Loxia sinesciuris

Two endemic sub-species are elevated by some authorities: Attwater's prairie chicken Tympanuchus cupido attwateri & San Clemente loggerhead shrike Lanius ludovicianus mearnsi

Number of endemics: 35 Hawaiian Endemics

Hawaiian Goose Branta sandvicensis Laysan Duck Anas laysanensis Hawaiian Duck Anas wyvilliana Hawaiian Hawk Buteo solitarius Kauai Elepaio Chasiempis sclateri Oahu Elepaio Chasiempis ibidis Hawaii Elepaio Chasiempis sandwichensis Poo-uli Melanprosops phaeosoma Oahu Alauahio Paroreomyza maculata Maui Alauahio Paroreomyza montana Laysan Finch Telespiza cantans Nihoa Finch Telespiza ultima Palila Loxioides bailleui Ou Psittirostra psittacea Akikiki Oreomystis bairdi Anianiau Magumma parva Akekee Loxops caeruleirostris Hawaii Akepa Loxops coccineus Maui Akepa Loxops ochraceus Hawaii Creeper Manucerthia mana Hawaii Amakihi Chlorodrepanis virens Oahu Amakihi Chlorodrepanis flava Kauai Amakihi Chlorodrepanis Stejnegeri Kauai Nukupuu Hemignathus hanapepe Maui Nukupuu Hemignathus affinis Akiapolaau Hemignathus wilsoni Maui Parrotbill Pseudonestor xanthophrys Iiwi Vestiaria coccinea Apapane Himatione sanguinea Akohekohe Palmeriadolei Millerbird Acrocephalus familiaris Omao Myadestes obscurus Puaiohi Myadestes palmeri

The Hawaiian Petrel Pterodroma sandwichensis is only a breeding endemic and the Hawaiian Crow Corvus hawaiiensis is extinct in the wild.

Checklist

iGoTerra Checklist

iGoTerra Checklist

Fatbirder Associate iGoTerra offers the most comprehensive and up to date birds lists on the web

ABA Checklist

WebBirder Checklist

This checklist covers the whole of the ABA area

Useful Reading

Birds of Eastern North America: A Photographic Guide

By Paul Sterry & Brian E Small | Princeton University Press | 2009 | Paperback | 336 pages, 1,118 colour photos, 405 maps |

ISBN: 9780691134260

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Birds of Prey of the East: A Field Guide

By Brian K Wheeler | Princeton University Press | 2018 | Paperback | 296 pages, 72 plates with colour illustrations; colour photos, 38 colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9780691117065

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Birds of Prey of the West: A Field Guide

By Brian K Wheeler | Princeton University Press | 2018 | Paperback | 360 pages, 85 plates with colour illustrations; colour photos, 58 colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9780691117188

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Birds of Western North America: A Photographic Guide

By Paul Sterry & Brian E Small | Princeton University Press | 2009 | Paperback | 416 pages, 1341 colour photos, 449 maps |

ISBN: 9780691134284

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Boreal Birds of North America

(A Hemispheric View of Their Conservation Links and Significance) | Edited by Jeffrey V Wells | University of California Press | 2011 | Hardback | 136 pages, 1 b/w photo, 9 b/w illustrations, 18 b/w maps, 20 tables |

ISBN: 9780520271005

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Collins Field Guide: Birds of North America

By Norman Arlott | Harper Collins | 2011 | Hardback | 239 pages, 100 colour plates, colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9780007293346

Buy this book from NHBS.com

DVD Guide to the Birds of North America

By Paul Doherty | Bird Images Video Guides | 2009 | 2DVD All Regions | 2 discs, runtime 7 h 27 min |

ISBN: 5065000721114

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National Geographic Complete Birds of North America

By Jonathan Alderfer, Jon L Dunn & Paul Lehman | National Geographic Society | 2014 | Hardback | 744 pages, 180 colour photos, colour illustrations, 815 colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9781426213731

Buy this book from NHBS.com

National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America

By Jon L Dunn, Jonathan Alderfer & Paul Lehman | National Geographic Society | 2017 | Paperback | 592 pages, 4,000+ colour illustrations & colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9781426218354

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Peterson Field Guide to Bird Sounds of Eastern North America

By Nathan Pieplow | Houghton Mifflin Harcourt | 2017 | Paperback | 593 pages, colour & b/w illustrations, colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9780547905587

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Peterson Field Guide to Bird Sounds of Western North America

By Nathan Pieplow | Houghton Mifflin Harcourt | 2019 | Hardback | 640 pages, colour illustrations |

ISBN: 9780547905570

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Peterson Field Guide to Birds of North America

By Roger Tory Peterson | Houghton Mifflin Harcourt | 2008 | Paperback | 530 pages, 195 colour plates |

ISBN: 9780618966141

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Peterson Field Guides: Western Birds

By Roger Tory Peterson | Houghton Mifflin Harcourt | 2010 | Paperback | 498 pages, 176 col plates, 588 maps |

ISBN: 9780547152707

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Rare Birds of North America

By Steve NG Howell, Ian Lewington & Will Russell | Princeton University Press | 2014 | Hardback | 428 pages, 275 colour plates, 2 b/w illustrations, 17 colour maps, 9 tables |

ISBN: 9780691117966

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Smithsonian Field Guide to the Birds of North America

By Ted Floyd | Harper Collins | 2008 | Paperback | Audio CD | 512 pages, 2000 colour photos, colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9780061120404

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The North American Bird Guide

By David Allen Sibley | Bloomsbury Publishing | 2014 | Edition 2 | Paperback | 599 pages, plates with 6600 colour illustrations, 600+ colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9781472909275

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The Sibley Field Guide to Birds of Eastern North America

By David Allen Sibley | Broadway Books | 2016 | Paperback | 439 pages, 4601+ colour illustrations, 601+ colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9780307957917

Buy this book from NHBS.com

The Sibley Field Guide to Birds of Western North America

By David Allen Sibley | Broadway Books | 2016 | Paperback | 477 pages, 5046+ colour illustrations, 652+ colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9780307957924

Buy this book from NHBS.com

The Young Birder's Guide to Birds of North America

By Bill Thompson | Houghton Mifflin Harcourt | 2012 | Paperback | 364 pages, colour photos, b/w illustrations, colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9780547440217

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Useful Information

Birding Clubs - Over 275 Locations Nationwide

http://find.mapmuse.com/interest/birding-clubs
Birding clubs accross the USA and their locations - you can add your own club to the map…

The State of the Birds

http://www.stateofthebirds.org
Nearly 850 million acres of land and 3.5 million square miles of ocean in the U.S. are owned by the American people. These habitats are vital to more than 800 bird species in the U.S., 251 of which are federally threatened, endangered, or of conservation concern. More than 300 bird species have 50% or more of their U.S. distribution on public lands and waters. Public agencies therefore have a major influence on the success of conservation efforts to restore declining species and keep common birds common…

Organisations

American Birding Association

Website

The American Birding Association represents the North American birding community and supports birders through publications, conferences, workshops, tours, partnerships, and networks. The ABA’s education programs promote birding skills, ornithological knowledge, and the development of a conservation ethic. The ABA encourages birders to apply their skills to help conserve birds and their habitats, and we represent the interests of birders in planning and legislative arenas.

American Eagle Foundation

Website

The American Eagle Foundation (AEF) is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to care for and protect the USA’ s living symbol of freedom, the Bald Eagle, and other birds of prey through the four pillars of Education, Re-population, Conservation and Rehabilitation.

American Ornithologists' Union

Website

The American Ornithological Society (AOS) is an international society devoted to advancing the scientific understanding of birds, enriching ornithology as a profession, and promoting a rigorous scientific basis for the conservation of birds. As one of the world's oldest and largest ornithological societies, AOS produces scientific publications of the highest quality, hosts intellectually engaging and professionally vital meetings, serves ornithologists at every career stage, pursues a global perspective, and informs public policy on all issues important to ornithology and ornithological collections. AOS is distinguished by its tremendous collective expertise, including eminent scientists, conservation practitioners, early career innovators, and students.

Association of Field Ornithologists

Website

Founded in 1922 as the New England Bird Banding Association, The Association of Field Ornithologists (AFO) is one of the world’s major societies of professional and amateur ornithologists dedicated to the scientific study and dissemination of information about birds in their natural habitats. AFO encourages the participation of amateurs in research, and emphasizes the conservation biology of birds

Birding For All (Formerly Disabled Birders Association of America)

Website

US Members and those wishing to join should mail through the international site…

Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology

Website

We use science to understand the world, to find new ways to make conservation work, and to involve people who share our passion.

Great Backyard Bird Count

Website

Launched in 1998 by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society, the Great Backyard Bird Count was the first online citizen-science project to collect data on wild birds and to display results in near real-time. Now, more than 160,000 people of all ages and walks of life worldwide join the four-day count each February to create an annual snapshot of the distribution and abundance of birds.

Hawk Migration Association of North America (HMANA)

Website

The Hawk Migration Association of North America (HMANA) was founded in 1974 and incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in the State of New York. HMANA’s mission is “To advance the scientific knowledge and promote conservation of raptor populations through study, enjoyment, and appreciation of raptor migration.”

Hummingbird Research, Inc.

Website

Hummingbird Research, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded in 2009 by Fred Bassett to promote the conservation of hummingbirds through research and education. We continue the vision of Bob and Martha Sargent and the Hummer/Bird Study Group.

Inland Bird Banding Association

Website

Inland Bird Banding Association was organized in 1922, in Chicago, Illinois, and in that same year began publishing the scientific work of its members. The organization has continued to grow since 1922 and now supports the largest membership of any bird banding association in America. Inland Bird Banding Association is an organization for all individuals interested in the serious study of birds, their life-history, ecology, and conservation…

National Audubon Society

Website

Protecting waterbird populations has been part of Audubon’s mission even before the official establishment of the National Audubon Society. Outrage over the slaughter of millions of waterbirds, particularly egrets and other waders, for the millinery trade led to the foundation, by Harriet Hemenway and Minna B. Hall, of the Massachusetts Audubon Society in 1896. By 1898, state-level Audubon Societies had been established in Pennsylvania, New York, New Hampshire, Illinois, Maine, Wisconsin, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Ohio, Indiana, Tennessee, Minnesota, Texas, and California...

National Bird Collection

Website

The Division of Birds, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, houses and maintains the third largest bird collection in the world with over 640,000 specimens…

National Bird-Feeding Society

Facebook Page

Established in 1989, the National Bird-Feeding Society (NBFS) helps make the backyard bird feeding and watching hobby better - for people and wild birds. The NBFS accomplishes its mission by connecting hobbyists with education and research about backyard bird feeding.

National Wildlife Refuge Association

Website

The National Wildlife Refuge Association’s mission is to conserve America’s wildlife heritage for future generations through strategic programs that protect and enhance the National Wildlife Refuge System and the landscapes beyond its boundaries

Nature Conservancy

Website

The Nature Conservancy began when leading scientists, committed citizens and dedicated leaders came together with a shared vision to protect and care for nature. From our first land purchase to our latest water fund, we are constantly evolving to bring innovative solutions to the challenges facing our world.

Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

Website

Located on six hundred acres along the James River Valley near Jamestown, North Dakota, the Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center is one of seventeen USGS Science Centers that develop and disseminate the scientific information needed to understand, conserve, and manage the Nation’s rich biological resources.

Pacific Seabird Group

Website

The Pacific Seabird Group (PSG) is a society of professional seabird researchers and managers dedicated to the study and conservation of seabirds and their environment. PSG was formed in 1972 out of a need for increased communication among academic and government seabird researchers

Partners in Flight

Website

Advancing full life-cycle conservation of landbirds in the Americas via sound science, integrated conservation partnerships, habitat delivery on public and private lands, and targeted citizen outreach.

Searchable Ornithological Research Archive

Website

SORA is the world's first and largest open access ornithological publications archive. This resource is the product of collaborations between the American Ornithologists Union, the Cooper Ornithological Society, the Association of Field Ornithologists, the Wilson Ornithological Society and the University of New Mexico Libraries. SORA provides access to an extensive library of ornithological literature of international scope, and detailed material documenting the history of ornithology in North America over the last 120 years.

Smithsonian Migratory Bird Centre

Website

Unique in its exclusive focus on migratory birds and its combination of research, education and training, and policy work, the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Centre is dedicated to fostering greater understanding, appreciation, and protection of the grand phenomenon of bird migration…

US Fish & Wildlife Service

Website

The Mission of the National Wildlife Refuge System is to administer a national network of lands and waters for the conservation, management, and where appropriate, restoration of the fish, wildlife, and plant resources and their habitats within the United States for the benefit of present and future generations of Americans.

Waterbird Society

Website

Scientific Study and Conservation of the World’s Waterbirds - The Waterbird Society is composed of biologists, researchers, conservationists, students, and others interested in the behavior, ecology, and conservation of waterbirds. The organization is administered by four officers and nine council members elected from the Society’s membership, which includes people from 31 countries. The Society is a member of the Ornithological Societies of North America (OSNA) and a contributing member of many other scientific societies worldwide, including American Bird Conservancy and The Ornithological Council.

Western Bird Banding Association

Website

The Western Bird Banding Association (WBBA) was founded in 1925 to provide guidance and assistance to a relatively small number of western bird banders, located then primarily in Southern California. WBBA’s archives, including a photo album, were destroyed by fire in 1991; beyond what was published in WBBA's periodicals, little information survives on the organization’s history.

Western Field Ornithologists

Website

Western Field Ornithologists is an organization of amateur and professional field ornithologists that promotes the study of birds throughout western North America including Hawaii, the northeastern Pacific Ocean, and Western Mexico. The organization strives to increase knowledge, appreciation, and protection of birds and their habitats through annual meetings, field trips, and publications, primarily Western Birds, a quarterly, peer-reviewed journal that focuses on field-oriented descriptive ornithology.

Wilson Society

Website

The Wilson Ornithological Society, founded in 1888, is a world-wide organization of nearly 2500 people who share a curiosity about birds. Named in honor of Alexander Wilson, the Father of American Ornithology, the Society publishes a quarterly journal of ornithology, The Wilson Journal of Ornithology, and holds annual meetings…

Forums & Mailing Lists

ABA Bird News

News & Sightings

Filter Birding News by making a selection from the dropdown. Refine your search by entering the type of bird you are looking for. Or just browse the lists

Guides & Tour Operators

Click on WAND for tours, guides, lodges and more…

Bird Treks

Tour Operator

Bird Treks has been providing small group and custom birding tours for over 20 years. Visit their website to see the incredible tours available, including Arizona, California, Maine, Minnesota, Texas, and more!

Trip Reports

Click on WAND for tours, guides, lodges and more…

CloudBirders

Trip Report Repository

CloudBirders was created by a group of Belgian world birding enthusiasts and went live on 21st of March 2013. They provide a large and growing database of birding trip reports, complemented with extensive search, voting and statistical features.

2007 [07 July] - David Bell - Texas, New Mexico, Arizona

Report

July is a great time to bird these areas, but then again they are great at any time of year. 15 days isn't all that long, especially when you have that much ground to cover, and the trip was mostly to see as much as possible, not for any one species. For the trip, I used the "FalconGuide: Birding Texas", which covers all of Texas. I would recommend the ABA's Birding the LRGV though, it was sold out when we tried to order it. In Arizona, I used the "Birder's Guide to Southeastern Arizona", also from the ABA. Both were very useful for finding the birds, as well as www.birdingonthe.net for info on rarities. I've included the driving distances as usual. We ended up driving 1940 miles (3123 km) on one car, and 578 miles (931 km) on the other, for a total of 2518 miles (4054 km) driven, plus the 48 miles (77 km) we did in the taxi on the way to and from the airport. All flying distances are approximate, as we don't have access to an odometer (if planes even have them). The total flying distance was 3895 miles (6271 km)…

2016 [02 February] - Terry & Karen McEneaney - Pacific Northwest

Report

...We ended the tour with 105 species of birds and nine species of mammals. We saw more than 120,000 individual birds, with more than 30,000 Snow Geese (in discrete flocks at four different locations) comprising the bulk of the birds seen. Other impressive bird numbers included the following estimates: 7,000+ Trumpeter Swans, 4,000 Tundra Swans, 20,000 American Wigeon, 8,000+ Surf Scoters; 20,000 Mallards, 14,000 Northern Pintails and Northern Shovelers, 300 Common Goldeneye, 300 Red-breasted Mergansers, 120 Red-throated Loons, 400-500 Bald Eagles, 50-80 Red-tailed Hawks, 15-20 Rough-legged Hawks, 5,000 Mew Gulls, 8,000 Ring-billed Gulls, 10,000 Glaucous-winged Gulls, 4,000 Dunlin, and a whopping four dozen plus Marbled Murrelets...

2016 [05 May] - Bruce Wedderburn - Southeast USA for Spring Migration

Report

This was a two-month trip to southeast USA for Yvonne and myself, from late March through to late May, with a focus on the Spring migration, in particular the highly varied and colourful warblers.

Blogs

Anna Fasoli - Speed Birding

BLOG

Last updated October 2012 - In 2007, I graduated from Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania and have been doing bird work ever since. I love to travel and I think I must have been a gypsy in my other life. I also write at www.nemesisbird.com…

Cory Ritter & Lukas Musher - Boom Chachalaca

BLOG

Last updated 2014 - Birding News, Highlights, Tips, and Photos for the American Birder. Cory Ritter and Lukas Musher started boom Chachalaca in November 2011 as a way to share birding experiences, tips and news with other birders, both beginners and experts, and to promote conservation…

Other Links

50 States.com

Website

Lists all the state birds of the US with articles about many of them etc.

Birds of North America

Website

Birds of North America (BNA) is the most comprehensive reference for the life histories of over 760 bird species that breed in the United States and Canada. Species accounts are written by ornithologists and other experts and are an essential reference for anyone with an advanced interest in birds. BNA accounts have always offered an in-depth, authoritative summary of scientific literature and media. However, in combination with the Macaulay Library and eBird, our restructured species accounts are now accompanied by new sounds, images, and video, and distributional maps and model output generated by eBird.

Birdwatching

Website

Birdwatching Dot Com is about wild birds and the sport of birding. It`s for everyone who is interested in birdwatching and enjoying nature. We hope you`ll find some good ideas here to help you have fun watching birds.

Birdzilla

Website

Calls itself the number one birdwatching website in the world… but is parochial being just about North America and, as we all know, Fat Birder is the Number One Site!

IBWFound Updates!

Website

Bobby Harrison, Tim Gallagher and others searched and researched Ivory-bills for over 33 years, they are not going to give up now, even if others do. When Federal funding runs out, we'll still be there. There are so few Ivory-bills, so many acres…

Ornithology.com

Website

Authoritative Information about Wild Birds from a Professional Ornithologist - The Ornithologist, Roger J. Lederer, at Ornithology.com has a Ph.D., taught for over thirty years, wrote thirty scientific papers and eight books, including: Amazing Birds, Birds of New England, Bird Finder, Pacific Coast Bird Finder, Latin for Bird Lovers, and Beaks, Bones, and Birdsongs. Dr. Lederer has also been keynote speaker at bird festivals, on many cruise lines, and hundreds of other venues.

Seabirds NW Pacific

Website

I have put together the favourite land based sea-watch sites along the Pacific Coast. I have tried to discuss not only the most productive site, but also sites with good access for watching from a vehicle or good cover. As often as not, some of the best weather for finding the best seabirds are on the days when walking to a lookout is least inviting.

Statistical Considerations in Monitoring Birds over Large Areas

Website

The proper design of a monitoring effort depends primarily on the objectives desired, constrained by the resources available to conduct the work…

Surfbirds

Website

We're a group of birding friends from Britain and America who decided to team up on a joint Anglo-American website. Bringing the best birding articles from both sides of the Atlantic onto one website, we hope to have created something unique. We'd love to hear from you if you have any thoughts, feedback or suggestions or wish to get involved in some way yourself.

Photographers & Artists

Photographer - Eric Skrzypczak - Fantasticbirds

Gallery

Hello and welcome to my website. This site is dedicated to the joy of spectacular birds and bird photography. I hope that you enjoy viewing some of these images as much as I enjoyed capturing them.

Photographer - Glenn Bartley

Gallery

Brilliant photos of many US species

Photographer - William Burt

Gallery

Bill specialises in rare and secretive birds and his photographs are not long-lens snaps but the result of years of patient stalking for close up shots that preserve the natural setting… amazing photographs Fatbirder

Webcam - Birdfeeder Camera

Gallery

This wild bird food company (Wild Birds Unlimited) has no less than 36 cameras in action at feeders where you can access the images of the birds that come in almost real time.