ABA Checklist

The ABA Checklist includes species found in the ABA Area which are breeding species, regular visitors, casual and accidental species from other regions that are believed to have strayed here unrestrained by humans, and well-established introduced species that are now part of our avifauna. Species Total: 1141

Version 8.15 – July 2024*

Downloadable Formats: PDF | CSV

The CLC has recently accepted three species to the ABA Checklist:

Gray Gull (Leucophaeus modestus), Yellow-headed Caracara (Milvago chimachima), Blue-black Grassquit (Volatinia jacarina).

ABA rarity codes have been updated as well. Details here >>

*Note that where discrepancies in names occur between Clements/eBird and the AOS, both are listed, that of AOS in parentheses. Note four-letter Alpha codes follow the English Names of the AOS. (December 2022)

ABA Checklist Committee Reports

2023 Pyle et al.
2022 Pyle et al.
2021 Pyle et al.
2020 Pyle et al.
2019 Pyle et al.
Pyle et al.
Pyle et al.
2016 Pranty et al.
2015 Pranty et al.
Pranty et al.
2013 Pranty et al.
2012 Pranty et al.
2011 Pranty et al.
2010 Pranty et al.
2009 Pranty et al.
2008 Pranty et al.
2007 Pranty et al.
2006 Pranty et al.
2005 Robbins et al.
2003 Robbins et al.
2002 Robbins et al.
2000-2001 Dunn et al.
1998-1999 Dunn et al.
1996-1997 Dunn et al.
1995 DeBenedictis et al.
1994 DeBenedictis et al.
1993 DeBenedictis et al.
1992 DeBenedictis et al.
1991 DeBenedictis et al.
1990 Gill et al.
1988-1989 Gill et al.
1987-1988 Gill et al.
1986 Gill et al.
1984-1985 Gill et al.

Checklist Codes

Code-1 and Code-2: Regularly occurring ABA Area avifauna.
Includes regular breeding species and visitors. There is no firm designation between Code-1 and Code-2 species, except that logically Code-1 species are more widespread and are usually more numerous. Code-2 species have a restricted range in the ABA Area, are widespread but occur in lower densities, or are quite secretive which makes their detection often difficult. We readily acknowledge that some Code-2 species are harder to find than some species that have higher codes.

Code-3: Rare.
Species that occur in very low numbers, but annually, in the ABA Area. This includes visitors and rare breeding residents.

Code-4: Casual.
Species not recorded annually in the ABA Area, but with six or more total records—including three or more in the past 30 years—reflecting some pattern of occurrence.

Code-5: Accidental.
Species that are recorded five or fewer times in the ABA Area, or fewer than three records in the past 30 years.

Code-6: Cannot be found.
The species is probably or actually extinct or extirpated from the ABA Area, or all survivors are held in captivity (or releases are not yet naturally re-established).

ABA Area

The ABA Area (sometimes referred to as the ABA Checklist Area) is essentially North America north of Mexico plus the Hawaiian Islands.

Specifically, the area encompassed is the 49 continental United States, the Hawaiian Islands, Canada, the French islands of St. Pierre et Miquelon, and adjacent waters to a distance of 200 miles from land or half the distance to a neighboring country, whichever is less.

Excluded by these boundaries are Bermuda, The Bahamas, and Greenland.

A subarea of the ABA Area, or other prescribed area, is as defined by its legal boundaries. If not legally defined otherwise, it includes adjacent water (rivers, lakes, bays, sounds, etc.) out to half the distance to a neighboring area, but not beyond 200 miles.

Birds observed on or over an ocean are counted for the area having jurisdiction over the nearest land, if within 200 miles.

Extirpated Exotics

With the 2014 changes to the Recording Rules and Interpretations, species in this appendix may now be counted on official lists submitted to the ABA’s Listing Central if:

  1. an individual of the species were encountered during the time when the species was present on the main Checklist, and
  2. the encountered individual belonged to, or strayed from, a population believed to be established at the time of the encounter.

For each species listed below, we have provided the year in which it was removed from the main ABA Checklist, as well as the populations that were considered countable. The year a species was removed from the main Checklist represents the last year during which an encounter with that species is considered countable on current lists. For example, you may now count a Yellow-headed Parrot seen in southeast Florida during or prior to 1982, but you may not count a Yellow-headed Parrot if you saw it during or after 1983.

Removed from main Checklist: 2015
Population considered countable: Tampa Bay, FL

Crested Myna
Removed from main Checklist: 2004
Population considered countable: Vancouver, BC

African Collared-Dove
Removed from main Checklist: 1994
Populations considered countable: Los Angeles, CA; St. Petersburg, FL; Montgomery, AL; Houston, TX

Yellow-headed Parrot
Removed from main Checklist: 1982
Population considered countable: southeast FL

Blue-gray Tanager
Removed from main Checklist: 1982
Population considered countable: south FL

Example of Code 1 species: American Robin. Photo @ Greg Neise

Example of Code 2 species: Spectacled Eider. Photo @ Greg Neise

Example of Code 3 species: Ferruginous Pygmy Owl. Photo @ Greg Neise

Example of Code 4 species: Black-tailed Gull. Photo @ Greg Neise

Example of Code 5 species: Amazon Kingfisher Photo @ Greg Neise