Bird Identification Article Search 

Your Subtitle text
    Reddish Egret (White Morph)                          Acadian Flycatcher                                             Bar-tailed Godwit

                    Nueces County Texas Bird Checklist


The purpose of this list is to fully include all naturally-occurring bird species positively recorded in Nueces County, Texas. The general criterion for the list, in the case of rarities or extralimitals, is that the record be published in a respected, peer-reviewed publication. These records are generally from North American Birds and its predecessor publications, Audubon Field Notes, American Birds and Field Notes. Certain records published in these journals have NOT been included, if there was doubt regarding identification or provenance of the record. In the case of Texas Bird Records Committee review species, it is required that the sighting be Accepted in order to be included here. We also include records that are supported by specimen or archived photograph, but may have not been published.

 This list is a work-in-progress, and will be amended as records occur and we add to our knowledge of Nueces County avifauna. Certain older records are still being sought or researched. I would value the input of birders and ornithology researchers as to comments, additions, corrections, etc.

 We hope that this checklist effort may inspire other Texas birders to create a similar database for their own county. These detailed historical studies may enable us to use more accuracy in reporting to national databases and journals regarding the rarity of a certain species. We may think of a rarity record of being a “first” or “second” county record, for example, when, in fact, we later find a specimen or detailed published report was obtained many years ago.

 Taxonomic sequencing and nomenclature follows the 56th Supplement, 7th edition of The Checklist of North American Birds, American Ornithologists Union, July 2015.

 Abundance Terms:
Only a few records, usually seen less than annually.
Seen a few times each season
Usually low density species, can be found with some effort
Fairly Common
: Should be found during a normal day’s birding activity
: Hard to miss


 Ducks, Geese and Swans (Anatidae)


Black-bellied Whistling-Duck

Dendrocygna autumnalis

Common to abundant year-round resident. Has increased  in numbers and range since the 1960s. 

Fulvous Whistling-Duck

Dendrocygna bicolor   

Fairly common migrant and breeder, especially during wet seasons.

Greater White-fronted Goose

Anser albifrons  

Common winter resident

Snow Goose

Chen caerulescens  

Common winter resident

Ross’s Goose

Chen rossii  

Winter resident, uncommon and in small numbers.


Branta bernicla   

Accidental.  One accepted record:

15 Jan 1995, Port Aransas  (TBRC 1995-10) (NAB)

Cackling Goose

Branta hutchinsii

Until the 1980’s, “white-faced” geese were plentiful in bays and estuaries around Corpus Christi. The hutchinsii race of Canada Goose, as this species was considered at that time, was among the most plentiful of the “races”. White-faced geese of both species are rare to uncommon in Nueces County since the 1980s.

Canada Goose

Branta canadensis  

Uncommon winter resident. Formerly common in larger numbers.

Tundra Swan


Winter 1970, “several small flocks in Rockport and Corpus Christi areas” (AFN 1970) There are several reports of this species from the early 1900s, and it may have been fairly regular in small numbers in winter during that time. Strecker (1912) writes.. "Winters abundantly on Galveston and Corpus Christi bays and at other points along the coast. Migrates over the entire region east of the Pecos."

Wood Duck

Aix sponsa  

Uncommon winter resident and possibly a breeder along Nueces River in the western part of the county.


Anas strepera   

Common winter resident

American Wigeon

Anas americana

 Common winter resident

American Black Duck

Anas rubripes  

Accidental: One accepted record:

15 Jan. 1890. Corpus Christi, Specimen in the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH 79453)


Anas platyrhynchos

 Uncommon winter resident

Mottled Duck

Anas fulvigula  

Common permanent resident

Blue-winged Teal

Anas discors

Common winter resident and rare breeder

Cinnamon Teal

Anas cyanoptera  

Uncommon winter resident

Northern Shoveler

Anas clypeata  

Common winter resident and occasional breeder

Northern Pintail

Anas acuta

 Common winter resident

Green-winged Teal

Anas crecca  

Common winter resident


Aythya valisineria  

Fairly common winter resident


Aythya Americana

Common winter resident

Ring-necked Duck

Aythya collaris

Common winter resident

Greater Scaup

Aythya marila  

Uncommon winter resident

Lesser Scaup

Aythya affinis

Common winter resident

Common Eider

Somateria mollissima  

Accidental: One accepted record; an adult male shot by a hunter in the Laguna Madre

8 Jan. 2007 N. Laguna Madre, NUE (TBRC 2007-11; TPRF 2480)

Surf Scoter

Melanitta perspicillata  

Rare winter visitor

White-winged Scoter

Melanitta fusca  

Rare winter visitor

Black Scoter

Melanitta nigra   

Rare winter visitor

Long-tailed Duck

Clangula hyemalis   

Rare winter visitor


Bucephala albeola  

Common winter resident

Common Goldeneye

Bucephala clangula  

Uncommon winter resident

Hooded Merganser

Lophodytes cucullatus

Fairly common winter resident

Red-breasted Merganser

Mergus serrator

Common winter resident

Masked Duck

Nomonyx dominicus

 Rare to accidental. Three accepted records:

10 Nov-5 Dec 1968  (1-10) Corpus Christi, NUE (*WWF 1532; TPRF 293) (AFN 23:78; Oberholser 1974; Rappole and Blacklock 1985)

20 Dec 1992-1 Jan 1993  (1-2) Corpus Christi, NUE (1*TCWC 12926; TBRC 1993-52; TPRF 1162) (AB 47:275, 845)

15-20 Jun 1996   Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 1996-112) (FN 50:969)

Many sight records

Ruddy Duck

Oxyura jamaicensis

Common winter resident

Curassows and Guans (Cracidae)

Plain Chachalaca

Ortalis vetula

Rare. One record:
13 Feb and 8 Apr 2009; Several birds photographed in extreme Southwest Nueces County. These birds are
from an original 1960s or 1970s introduction release by Texas Parks and Wildlife in adjoining Kleberg County.
This population has been self-sustaining since the release.  Pending TPRF file number.

New World Quail (Odontophoridae)


Scaled Quail

Callipepla squamata 

One published record:

Blacklock saw two in the Nueces Bay area Mar. 21 and 25, 1962. Formerly ranged to the Central Coast. (AFN 1962)


Northern Bobwhite

Colinus virginianus

Fairly common permanent resident, declining in number


Partridges, Grouse, Turkeys (Phasianidae)


Wild Turkey

Meleagris gallopavo  

Fairly common permanent resident


Loons (Gaviidae)


Red-throated Loon  

Gavia stellata  One accepted record prior to TBRC delisting in 2002

11 Jan 1992  Mustang Is., NUE (TBRC 1992-83; TPRF 1115)

 25 Feb 2013 One near NAS in Laguna Madre, NAB  Vol. 67, No. 2, Pg. 300

29 Dec. 2015 One was seen flying past Port Aransas Jetty. eBird

Pacific Loon

Gavia pacifica     

Rare in winter. Two TBRC accepted records prior to delisting in 1996. Several sight records. 

One at Ingleside-on-the-Bay, NUE 2 Jan  2011 + NAB Vol. 65 No. 2, pg. 305.

One was present at Ingleside-on-the-Bay Dec. 31, 2016, and Dec. 14, 2017, pending publishing in NAB

 Common Loon

Gavia immer

Common winter resident


Yellow-billed Loon

Gavia adamsii  

Accidental: One accepted record:

25-27 Mar 2006        Flour Bluff, NUE (TBRC 2006-33; TPRF 2402)


Grebes (Podicipedidae)


Least Grebe

Tachybaptus dominicus

Fairly common permanent resident.


Pied-billed Grebe

Podilymbus podiceps

Common permanent resident, population highest in winter months.


Horned Grebe

Podiceps auritus

 Rare winter visitor


Eared Grebe

Podiceps nigricollis 

Common winter resident


Western Grebe

Aechmophorus occidentalis

One published record:

9 Dec 1968 from a pond at Oso Golf Course, and described by Blacklock as “first Nueces County record”.

 27 Mar - May 15, 2013 One photographed from Port Aransas Jetty, NAB Vol. 67 No. 3, pg. 479


Shearwaters and Petrels (Procellariidae)


Stejneger’s Petrel

Pterdeoma longirostris

Accidental: One record:

15 Sep 1995 Port Aransas, NUE (*TCWC 13351) (TBRC 1997-59; TPRF 1746)


Cory’s Shearwater

Calonectris diomedea

Fairly common fall and winter resident in open Gulf of Mexico.


Great Shearwater

Puffinus gravis

Rare, but apparently regular in open Gulf of Mexico at all seasons. Six accepted TBRC records.

27 Dec 1971 Mustang Is., NUE (TBRC 2006-02; TPRF 2361)

13 Oct 1984   off Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 1985-14; TPRF 544) (AB 39:75)

29 Jun 1998  Mustang Is., NUE (*TCWC 13368; TBRC 1998-94; TPRF 1619) (FN 52:475)

6 Oct 2002     off Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 2002-108; TPRF 2078)

10 Oct 2006   Mustang Is., NUE (*TCWC 14,668; TBRC 2009-29; TPRF 2714)

31 Jul 2010   off Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 2010-50; TPRF 2822)

6 Sept 2013 near Port Aransas jetty (TBRC 2013-53; TPRF 3156)

25 Nov 2015 Offshore near Hospital Rock, NUE (TBRC 2015-75 ; TPRF)

Sooty Shearwater

 Puffinus griseus 

Rare but apparently regular in open Gulf of Mexico at all seasons, likely more expected in migration. Six accepted TBRC records.

19 Jun 1952       Port Aransas, NUE (*TCWC 9081) (Peterson 1960; Oberholser 1974)

19 May 1988        Mustang Is., NUE (TBRC 1988-234; TPRF 680) (AB 42:458)

20 Jun 1989         N. Padre Is., NUE (*CCM 90-A-0024; TBRC 2001-55; TPRF 1898)

11 Jun 1993         Mustang Is., NUE (*TCWC 13000; TBRC 1993-107; TPRF 1166) (AB 48:127)

10 Oct 1993         Mustang Is., NUE (*TCWC 13001; TBRC 1993-140; TPRF 1238) (AB 48:127)

11 Jun 2007         Mustang Is., NUE (*TCWC 14,625; TBRC 2009-28; TPRF 2713)

6 Sept 2013       Port Aransas Jetty (TBRC 2013-53; TPRF 3156)

Manx Shearwater

Puffinus puffinus

 Rare in Gulf of Mexico waters. Five accepted TBRC records.

15 Feb 1975    N. Padre Is., NUE (*CCM 84A007) (AB 29:1006)

11 Aug 1980    Mustang Is., NUE (*WFVZ 50099) (AB 35:201)

13 Nov 1984    Mustang Is., NUE (*TCWC 12163; TBRC 1988-139; TPRF 628)

7 Oct 1987      Mustang Is., NUE (*TCWC 12162; TBRC 1988-138; TPRF 629) (AB 42:100)

21 Jun 1993    Mustang Is., NUE (TBRC 1993-101; TPRF 1170) (AB 47:1125)


Audubon’s Shearwater

Puffinus lherminieri  

Regular and fairly common in Gulf of Mexico waters, more common in summer months and migration.


Storm-Petrels (Hydrobatidae)


Leach’s Storm-Petrel

Oceanodroma leucorhoa  

Rare but fairly regular in spring and summer in Gulf of Mexico waters. Five accepted TBRC records:

31 May 1970 Corpus Christi, NUE (TPRF 7) (AB 37:1004; Oberholser 1974)

9 Jul 1976     Corpus Christi, NUE (*CCM 76A136) (AB 30:976; Blacklock and Peabody 1983; Rappole and Blacklock 1985)

1 Jun 1991   off Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 1991-69) (AB 45:1135)

15 Jun 1991  off Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 1991-78) (AB 45:1135)

 18 Jul 2011 24 mi. e. of Port Aransas   TBRC 2011-73

Band-rumped Storm-Petrel

Oceanodroma castro  

Fairly common in summer in the Gulf of Mexico in summer and fall. Two accepted TBRC records prior to the species’ delisting in 1997. 


Tropicbirds (Phaethontidae)


Red-billed Tropicbird

 Phaethon aethereus  Accidental in open Gulf of Mexico. One accepted record:

22 June, 2010 Off Port Aransas, TBRC # 2010-43.

Storks (Ciconiidae)



Jabiru mycteria  Accidental. One record;  

 6-18 Sept.1981.  Oso Bay, TBRC # 1981-6  TPRF 251


Wood Stork

Mycteria americana

 Fairly common summer and fall visitor.


Frigatebirds (Fregatidae)


Magnificent Frigatebird

Fregata magnificens

Uncommon summer resident in Gulf of Mexico.


Boobies and Gannets (Sulidae)

Masked Booby

Sula dactylatra

 Uncommon in Gulf of Mexico, mainly summer.


Brown Booby

Sula leucogaster  

Rare in Gulf of Mexico, mainly summer.

20 Sep 1971 Port Aransas, NUE (*WFVZ 50106; WWF ph P-15) (AB 26:85)

30 Aug 1975 off Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 1977-8) (AB 30:95)

20 Aug 1977  (2)      Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 1988-52) (AB 32:227)

11 Aug 1980        Mustang Is., NUE (*WFVZ 50107) (AB 35:201)

13 Jul 2004         off Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 2004-62)

27 Jul 2004         off Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 2004-64)

26 Feb-4 Mar 2005  Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 2005-47; TPRF 2299)

29 Sep 2005             Port Aransas, NUE (*TCWC 14,321; TBRC 2006-12; TPRF 2366)

16 Jul 2008      North Packery Jetty, NUE (TBRC 2008-68; TPRF 2595)

 19 Mar 2013     Corpus Christi Bay, near Indian Point Park NUE (5 birds) (TBRC 2013-027)

15 Dec 2013 - 30 Jul 2014 (1-5) Corpus Christi and Nueces Bays, TBRC 2013-79; TPRF

30 April 2015 Offshore from Port Aransas NUE (TBRC 2015-39: TPRF)

Northern Gannet

Morus bassanus

Fairly common winter resident in open Gulf of Mexico.


Cormorants (Phalacrocoracidae)


Neotropic Cormorant

Phalacrocorax brasilianus

 Common permanent resident.


Double-crested Cormorant

Phalacrocorax auritus  

Common winter resident.


Darters (Anhingidae)



Anhinga anhinga  

Fairly common permanent resident.


Pelicans (Pelecanidae)


American White Pelican

Pelecanus erythrorhynchos

 Common in winter, with a small summering population.


Brown Pelican

Pelecanus occidentalis

Common permanent resident.


Bitterns, Herons, and Allies (Ardeidae)


American Bittern

Botaurus lentiginosus

 Uncommon migrant and winter resident.

Least Bittern

Ixobrychus exilis

 Fairly common summer resident. A few remain in mild winters.


Great Blue Heron

Ardea herodias

Common permanent resident.


Great Egret

Ardea alba

Common permanent resident.


Snowy Egret

Egretta thula  

Common permanent resident


Little Blue Heron

Egretta caerulea

Fairly common permanent resident


Tricolored Heron

Egretta tricolor

Common permanent resident


Reddish Egret

Egretta rufescens

Common permanent resident


Cattle Egret

Bubulcus ibis

Common permanent resident


Green Heron

Butorides virescens  

Fairly common permanent resident.


Black-crowned Night-Heron

Nycticorax nycticorax

Common permanent resident

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron

Nyctanassa violacea

 Fairly common permanent resident, numbers increased during migration.


Ibises and Spoonbills (Threskiornithidae)

 White Ibis

Eudocimus albus  

Common permanent resident

Glossy Ibis

Plegadis falcinellus

Rare. Has occurred at all seasons.

White-faced Ibis

Plegadis chihi  

Fairly common permanent resident

Roseate Spoonbill

Platalea ajaja  

Common permanent resident


New World Vultures (Cathartidae)

 Black Vulture

Coragyps atratus  

Common permanent resident

 Turkey Vulture

Cathartes aura  

Common permanent resident


Ospreys (Pandionidae)


Pandion haliaetus

Winter resident; occasional non-breeders in summer


Hawks, Kites, Eagles, and Allies (Accipitridae)

 Swallow-tailed Kite

Elanoides forficatus  

Uncommon spring and fall migrant

White-tailed Kite

Elanus leucurus  

Uncommon permanent resident

Mississippi Kite

Ictinia mississippiensis

Common spring and fall migrant

Bald Eagle

Haliaeetus leucocephalus  

Rare visitant. Most records along Nueces River in fall.

Northern Harrier

Circus cyaneus  

Common winter resident


Sharp-shinned Hawk

Accipiter striatus

Common migrant and winter resident


Cooper’s Hawk

Accipiter cooperii  

Common migrant and winter resident; local breeder


Harris’s Hawk

Parabuteo unicinctus

Common permanent resident


Red-shouldered Hawk

Buteo lineatus

Common permanent resident


Broad-winged Hawk

Buteo platypterus

Common spring and fall migrant, rare in winter


Short-tailed Hawk

Buteo brachyurus  

Accidental. Two accepted records;

20 Oct 1999   Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 1999-119)

2 Sep 2005    Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2005-117)


Swainson’s Hawk

Buteo swainsoni

 Common sping and fall migrant. Rare in winter.


White-tailed Hawk

Buteo albicaudatus

Common permanent resident


Zone-tailed Hawk

Buteo albonotatus

Rare visitant, possible at any time of year.


Red-tailed Hawk

Buteo jamaicensis

Common winter resident. Has nested in small numbers.


Ferruginous Hawk

Buteo regalis

Uncommon winter resident

 Rough-legged Hawk

Accidental. One specimen record, scattered historical sight records.

12 Mar 1887 female specimen, Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoology # 252650 collected at 27.7795504° -97.4892041° which is central
Corpus Christi. Collector not listed.

Golden Eagle

Aquila chrysaetos

Rare fall and winter visitor


Rails, Gallinules, and Coots (Rallidae)

 Black Rail

Laterallus jamaicensis  

Rare to uncommon resident in spartina marshes. Status and distribution poorly known.


Clapper Rail

Rallus longirostris

Common permanent resident.


King Rail

Rallus elegans

Uncommon migrant and winter resident. Probably nests in wet seasons.


Virginia Rail

Rallus limicola

Common migrant and winter resident.



Porzana carolina

Common migrant and winter resident.


Purple Gallinule

Porphyrio martinica  

Uncommon summer resident, occasional in winter


Common Gallinule

Gallinula chloropus    

Common permanent resident


American Coot

Fulica americana  

Common permanent resident


 Cranes (Gruidae)


Sandhill Crane

Grus canadensis

Common winter resident


Whooping Crane

Grus americana

One published sight record with photos.  Nov. 4-6 2005 from Wooldridge Road, near Cayo del Oso, NAB


Lapwings and Plovers (Charadriidae)


Black-bellied Plover

Pluvialis squatarola 1

Common winter resident. A few non-breeders spend the summer.


American Golden-Plover

Pluvialis dominica

Common spring migrant, rare fall migrant.


Snowy Plover

Charadrius nivosus

Fairly common permanent resident


Wilson’s Plover

Charadrius wilsonia

Common summer resident, rare in winter


Semipalmated Plover

Charadrius semipalmatus

Common in winter and migration, less numerous in summer


Piping Plover

Charadrius melodus

Fairly common winter resident



Charadrius vociferus

Common permanent resident


Mountain Plover

Charadrius montanus

Uncommon winter resident in agricultural fields


 Oystercatchers (Haematopodidae)


American Oystercatcher

Haematopus palliatus

Fairly common permanent resident


Stilts and Avocets (Recurvirostridae)


Black-necked Stilt

Himantopus mexicanus

Common permanent resident


American Avocet

Recurvirostra Americana

Fairly common permanent resident


Sandpipers, Phalaropes, and Allies (Scolopacidae)


Spotted Sandpiper

Actitis macularius

Common migrant and winter resident


Solitary Sandpiper

Tringa solitaria

Fairly common migrant and occasional winter resident


Greater Yellowlegs

Tringa melanoleuca

Common winter resident and migrant. A few linger in summer.



Tringa semipalmata

T.s. semipalmata, Eastern Willet,  is a common summer resident and migrant, T.s. inoratus, the Western Willet,  is a common winter resident, while T.s.semipalmata is mainly absent in winter.


Lesser Yellowlegs

Tringa flavipes

Common winter resident, with a few non-breeders lingering in summer


Upland Sandpiper

Bartramia longicauda

Common spring and fall migrant



Numenius phaeopus

Fairly common spring and fall migrant in small numbers

Eskimo Curlew

Numenius borealis

 Considered extinct. One accepted record: March 8, 1877, from N. Padre Island. This species was almost certainly an abundant migrant on the prairies of Nueces County.

Long-billed Curlew

Numenius americanus

Common migrant and winter resident


Hudsonian Godwit

Limosa haemastica

Fairly common spring migrant

Bar-tailed Godwit

Limosa lapponica

9 Aug - 26 Oct. 2014     Oso Bay,  TBRC 2014-44; TPRF

Marbled Godwit

Limosa fedoa

Common migrant and winter resident


Ruddy Turnstone

 Arenaria interpres

Common migrant and winter resident



Aphriza virgata

Accidental spring migrant

Four accepted records:

April 4-11, 1975, Port Aransas (TBRC 1994-87; TPRF 1263) AB 29:876

April 21 1983 (2 birds) Port Aransas (TPRF 513) (AB 37:889)

May 1-9, 2009 Port Aransas, (TBRC 2009-40; TPRF 2722)

 Mar. 22- Apr. 1 2012 Packery Channel Jetty (TBRC 2012-30, TPRF 3022)

Red Knot

Calidris canutus

Fairly common migrant and winter resident. Numbers decreasing



Calidris alba

Common migrant and winter resident; smaller numbers during summer months.


Semipalmated Sandpiper

Calidris semipalmatus

Common spring and fall migrant


Western Sandpiper

Calidris mauri

Common migrant and winter resident     


Least Sandpiper

Calidris minutilla

Common migrant and winter resident.


White-rumped Sandpiper

Calidris fuscicollis

Common spring migrant, rare in fall.


Baird’s Sandpiper

Calidris bairdii

Fairly common spring and fall migrant


Pectoral Sandpiper

Calidris melanotos

Common spring and fall migrant


Purple Sandpiper

Calidris maritime


Two accepted records:

April 16-28, 1996, Port Aransas (TBRC 1996-58: TPRF 1508) (FN 50:302

Feb. 22, 2009 Port Aransas (TBRC 2009-26; TPRF 2711)

 28 Mar. 2012 Packery Channel jetties (TBRC 2012-31 TPRF 3023)


Calidris alpina

Common fall and spring migrant, common winter resident


Curlew Sandpiper

Calidris ferruginea


Two accepted records:

Aug. 21-27, 2002, Port Aransas, (TBRC 2002-97; TPRF 2083)

Aug. 17-Sept. 4, 2009, Cayo del Oso, (TBRC 2009-71; TPRF 2741)


Stilt Sandpiper

Calidris himantopus

Common migrant, fairly common winter resident


Buff-breasted Sandpiper

Tryngites subruficollis

Fairly common fall and spring migrant



 Philomachus pugnax

Accidental, one record:

Oct. 19, 1968- Jan. 11, 1969, Cayo del Oso, (Welder Wildlife Foundation ph S-27; TPRF 568)

(AFN 23; 79,497. Oberholser 1974)


Short-billed Dowitcher

Limnodromus griseus

Common migrant and winter resident


Long-billed Dowitcher

Limnodromus scolopaceus

Common migrant and winter resident


Wilson’s Snipe

Gallinago delicata

Common winter resident


American Woodcock

Scolopax minor

Occasional winter resident


Wilson’s Phalarope

Phalaropus tricolor

Common spring and fall migrant, rare in winter


Red-necked Phalarope

Phalaropus lobatus

Rare spring and fall migrant

 Red Phalarope

Phalaropus fulicarius

One accepted record:

Packery Channel jetties area April 1, 2012 (TBRC 2012-32; TPRF3024)

Skuas, Gulls, Terns and Skimmers  (Laridae)

Black-legged Kittiwake

Rissa tridactyla


Eight accepted records:

Port Aransas winter 1981-March, 1982 (TPRF 885) (AB 36:872)

Port Aransas, Dec. 7, 1990, (TBRC 1991-97; TPRF 1011)

Mustang Island Dec. 1, 1993 (TBRC 1994-16; TPRF 1234; FN 48:226)

Port Aransas Jan. 1, 1996 (TBRC 1997-131 *TCWC 13332; TPRF 1538)

Port Aransas Mar. 13, 1997 (TBRC 1997-127; *TCWC 13331; TPRF 1537) (FN51:894)

Port Aransas Apr. 3, 2010 (TBRC 2010-79; TPRF)

Mustang Island State Park and Port Aransas 31 Dec  2012 to 10 Mar. 2013 (TBRC 2013-02; TPRF 3147)

Port Aransas 29 Dec. 2013 - 26 Feb. 2014 (TBRC 2014-07; TPRF)


Sabine’s Gull

Xema sabini

Rare coastal migrant, mainly in fall

Five accepted records:

Corpus Christi, Oct. 4, 1889 (*British Museum of Natural History 1965-M-4079: TPRF 1482)

Port Aransas Oct. 1, 1977 (TBRC1978-11)

Mustang Island Nov. 2, 1982 (TBRC 1988-136; TPRF 647)

20 Sept 2012 One photographed at Port Aransas

10-12 May 2014 One downtown Corpus Christi, NAB Vol. 68 No. 3, pg. 390, TPRF

Bonaparte’s Gull

Chroicocephalus philadelphia

Fairly common winter resident


Little Gull

Hydrocoloeus minutus

Accidental winter visitor

Four Accepted records

Mustang Island )TBRC 1992-11; TPRF 1081; (AB 46:288)

Port Aransas jetty area (2) 1 Feb to 31 March  2011 (TBRC 2011-018. TPRF 2942)

Port Aransas jetty area (1) 13 Feb to 15 Feb 2012 (TBRC 2012-15 TPRF 3012)

Port Aransas jetty area (1-2) 18 Feb to 9 March 2012 (TBRC 2012-48 TPRF 3015

Laughing Gull

Leucophaeus atricilla

Common permanent resident


Franklin’s Gull

Leucophaeus pipixcan

Common spring and fall migrant


Black-tailed Gull

Larus crassirostris


One accepted record: Corpus Christi, Mar. 6, 2004 (TBRC 2004-23; TPRF 2189)


Heermann’s Gull

Larus heermanni


One accepted record:

Feb. 8 1983 (TBRC 1988-137; TPRF 648) (AB 37; 889)


 Ring-billed Gull

Larus delawarensis

Common migrant and winter resident


California Gull

Larus californicus

Rare migrant and winter visitor


Yellow-Legged Gull

Larus michahellis


Two accepted records:

24 Jan- 4 Apr. 2004 Corpus Christi Ayres landfill  (TBRC 2004-15; TPRF 2673)

4 Mar 2004 Corpus Christi Ayres landfill (Corpus Christi Ayres landfill TBRC 2004-25; TPRF 2508)


Herring Gull

Larus argentatus

Common winter resident


Thayer’s Gull

Larus thayeri

Rare in winter. 11 accepted TBRC records prior to TBRC delisting in 2004.

All records December to April


Lesser Black-backed Gull

Larus fuscus

Uncommon to rare winter resident


Slaty-backed Gull

Larus schistisagus


Two accepted records:

21-24 Dec, 2003 Cayo del Oso (TBRC 2004-27: TPRF 2191)

23 Feb. 2012 Port Aransas area.  TBRC 2012-21; TPRF 3118)

Glaucous Gull

Larus hyperboreus

Rare winter visitor, 11 accepted records from Dec.-April prior to TBRC delisting in 1997


Great Black-backed Gull

Larus marinus

Rare winter visitor:  nine accepted TBRC records:

4 Jan, 1986 Port Aransas (TBRC 1988-110) (AB 40:917)

27 Sept, 1988 Port Aransas (TBRC 1996-187; TPRF 1658)

11 Nov- 23 Jan, 1992  Mustang Island (TBRC 1991-136; TPRF 1028) (AB 46:120, 288)

31 Dec. 1992 (TBRC 1993-54; TPRF 1160) (AB 47:275)

2 Jan 1993    Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 1994-60)

14 Dec 1993 Mustang Is., NUE (TBRC 1994-59; TPRF 1340) (FN 48:226)

9 Nov 1996    Mustang Is., NUE (TBRC 1997-107; TPRF 1659)

3-12 Mar 2001          Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2001-53; TPRF 1987)

11 Nov 2010 Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 2010-66; TPRF )


Brown Noddy

Anous stolidus

Rare spring, summer visitor

Four accepted records:

20 Jun 2006  Packery Channel jetties, NUE (TBRC 2006-77; TPRF 2436)

16 Jul 2006 (2)  Off Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 2006-120; TPRF 2463)

8 Aug-8 Sep 2009  (2)  Port Aransas, NUE/ARA (TBRC 2009-72; TPRF 2742)

17 Jun-23 July 2011 (2) Offshore 26 mi. E of  Port Aransas NUE (TBRC 2011-071 TPRF 2978) 

 Black Noddy

Anous minutus

One accepted record

22 Jun 1975  N. Padre Is., NUE (TBRC 2002-91; TPRF 77) (AB 29:1004 and 30:97)


Sooty Tern

Onychoprion fuscatus

Rare summer visitor in open Gulf of Mexico and occasional breeder in Laguna Madre


Bridled Tern

Onychoprion anaethetus

Occasional visitor and summer resident in open Gulf of Mexico

Four accepted records prior to TBRC delisting in 1997, several sight records since.


Least Tern

Sternula antillarum

Common summer resident


Gull-billed Tern

Gelochelidon nilotica

Fairly common permanent resident, more numerous in summer


Caspian Tern

Hydroprogne caspia

Common permanent resident


Black Tern

Chlidonias niger

Common migrant and non-breeding summer resident


Roseate Tern

Sterna dougallii

Accidental: One record:

10 Apr 1901  Corpus Christi, NUE (*ROM 39704; TBRC 1996-111; TPRF 1535) (Oberholser 1974


Common Tern

Sterna hirundo

Common migrant including non-breeding summer birds, rare winter resident.


Forster’s Tern

Sterna forsteri

Common permanent resident


Royal Tern

Thalasseus maximus

Common permanent resident


Sandwich Tern

Thalasseus sandvicensis

Common resident spring through fall, uncommon in winter


Elegant Tern

Thalasseus elegans

Accidental: One record:

25 Jul 1889   Corpus Christi, NUE (*British MNH 91-10-20-92; TPRF 1460) (Peterson 1960; Oberholser 1974)


Black Skimmer

Rynchops niger

Common permanent resident


Skuas and Jaegers (Stercorariidae)


Pomarine Jaeger

Stercorarius pomarinus

Rare visitor in Gulf of Mexico, mainly winter


Parasitic Jaeger

Stercorarius parasiticus

Rare visitor to Gulf of Mexico, mainly winter


Long-tailed Jaeger

Stercorarius longicaudus


One accepted record:

6 Jun 1987    Port Aransas (*WFVZ 50394; TBRC 1990-62; TPRF 869)


Pigeons and Doves (Columbidae)


Rock Pigeon

Columba livia

Common permanent resident


Red-billed Pigeon

Patagioenas flavirostris


Two published sight records:

Jan. 26, 1969 Flour Bluff by an experienced observer, AFN-1969)

March 3-5, 1988 Corpus Christi, with photo, TPRF 615, (AB-1988)


Eurasian Collared-Dove

Streptopelia decaocto

Common permanent resident


White-winged Dove

Zenaida asiatica

Common permanent resident


Mourning Dove

Zenaida macroura

Common Permanent resident


Inca Dove

Columbina inca

Common permanent resident


Common Ground-Dove

Columbina passerina

Common permanent resident


White-tipped Dove

Leptotila verreauxi

Uncommon permanent resident, subject to northern range expansion


Lories, Parakeets, Macaws, and Parrots (Psittacidae)


Monk Parakeet

Myiopsitta monachus

Established exotic with sustaining populations


Cuckoos, Roadrunners, and Anis (Cuculidae)


Yellow-billed Cuckoo

Coccyzus americanus

Common migrant and summer resident


Mangrove Cuckoo

Coccyzus minor


One accepted record:

3-4 May 2000            Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2000-30; TPRF 1912)


Black-billed Cuckoo

Coccyzus erythropthalmus

Uncommon migrant in spring, rare in fall


Greater Roadrunner

Geococcyx californianus

Common permanent resident


Groove-billed Ani

Crotophaga sulcirostris

Fairly common summer resident


 Barn Owls (Tytonidae)


Barn Owl

Tyto alba

Common permanent resident


Typical Owls (Strigidae)


Flammulated Owl

Otus flammeolus


Three published records:

30 Oct. 1980, Port Aransas, Photographed, (AB)

24 Nov. 2007, A bird brought to the Ark rehab center in Port Aransas (AB)

 30 Nov. 2012 one bird found in south Corpus Christi, taken to ARK, where it was determined to
be underweight but uninjured. NAB Vol. 67, No. 1, pg. 113.

Eastern Screech-Owl

Megascops asio

Common permanent resident


Great Horned Owl

Bubo virginianus

Common permanent resident


Burrowing Owl

Athene cunicularia

Uncommon winter resident


Barred Owl

Strix varia

Fairly common permanent resident


Long-eared Owl

Asio otus

Four records:

4 Jan 1910 Nueces County, J. Priour, (publication?) Blacklock/Rappole 1985

4 Nov 1977 One bird found dead in “Corpus Christi area”. AB

7 Apr 1995 One found dead on Mustang Island, AB

11-12 Nov 2011 One bird photographed at a condo on Mustang Island.


Short-eared Owl

Asio flammeus

Uncommon winter resident


Goatsuckers (Caprimulgidae)


Lesser Nighthawk

Chordeiles acutipennis

Common migrant and uncommon summer resident


Common Nighthawk

Chordeiles minor

Common migrant and summer resident


Common Pauraque

Nyctidromus albicollis

Common permanent resident


Common Poorwill

Phalaenoptilus nuttallii

Rare migrant and visitor

One specimen record:

1993 (date?)  TCWC specimen number 13137

Several sight records



Caprimulgus carolinensis

Common spring and fall migrant


Eastern Whip-poor-will

Caprimulgus vociferus

Fairly common spring and fall migrant


Swifts (Apodidae)


Chimney Swift

Chaetura pelagica

Common summer resident


White-throated Swift

Aeronautes saxatalis

One published sight record:

16 Apr 1965  “Five White-throated Swifts were seen at very close range at Hazel Bazemore Park on the Nueces on April 16 (Gene Blacklock), a very unusual record for the Central Coast” (AFN 1965)


 Hummingbirds (Trochilidae)


Green Violetear

Colibri thalassinus


Four accepted records:

6 May-25 Jun 1995  Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 1995-60; TPRF 1374) (FN 49:276, 951

7-13 May 2000          Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2000-64; TPRF 1787

2-3 Apr 2002 Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2002-48; TPRF 1972)

17 Apr 2009  Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2009-35; TPRF 2717)


Green-breasted Mango

Anthracothorax prevostii


6-27 Jan 1992          Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 1992-10; TPRF 1133) (AB 46:289, 451)

3-8 Nov & 29 Nov-21 Dec 1997  Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 1997-150; TPRF 1632) (AB 98th CBC issue: 398; FN 52:89; 224)

12 Aug 2009   Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2009-80; TPRF 2746)


Buff-bellied Hummingbird

Amazilia yucatanensis

Common permanent resident, more numerous in summer


Blue-throated Hummingbird

Lampornis clemenciae


Two published record, several sight records

17 Nov 1973 Corpus Christi (AB, 1974)

21 Nov, 1995 - 2 Feb 1996 Calallen area, Corpus Christi


Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Archilochus colubris

Common migrant, rare non-breeding summer visitor, rare in winter


Black-chinned Hummingbird

Archilochus alexandri

Common summer resident


Anna’s Hummingbird

Calypte anna

Rare winter visitor


Calliope Hummingbird

Stellula calliope


One published record, one banding record, one photo record

(Date?) 1995 One female,Corpus Christi

20 Feb- 13 April 2003 female banded and recaptured, Calallen area, Corpus Christi

17 24 Dec 2011 One female photographed Dec. 24 2011 to TPRF

Sept 2012 one female photographed at Hazel Bazemore County Park, photo to TPRF

Broad-tailed Hummingbird

Selasphorus platycercus

Rare to occasional winter visitor


Rufous Hummingbird

Selasphorus rufus

Uncommon migrant and winter visitor


Allen’s Hummingbird

Selasphorus sasin

Rare to occasional migrant and winter visitor, several banding records

Seven TBRC records prior to delisting in 2004. Several sight records


Kingfishers (Alcedinidae)


Ringed Kingfisher

Megaceryle torquata

Rare visitor or resident, possibly breeds along Nueces River


Belted Kingfisher

Megaceryle alcyon

Common winter resident


Green Kingfisher

Chloroceryle americana

Uncommon winter resident, probably increasing in numbers, possibly breeds along Nueces River


Woodpeckers and Allies (Picidae)


Red-headed Woodpecker

Melanerpes erythrocephalus

Rare, most records are first year birds


Golden-fronted Woodpecker

Melanerpes aurifrons

Common permanent resident


Red-bellied Woodpecker

Melanerpes carolinus


One photographed record . Several older sight records.

29 Jan - 31 Mar  2012 with photo eBird record of 6 Mar 2012

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

Sphyrapicus varius

Common migrant and winter resident


Red-naped Sapsucker

Sphyrapicus nuchalis

Rare winter visitor


Ladder-backed Woodpecker

Picoides scalaris

Common permanent resident


Downy Woodpecker

Picoides pubescens

Occasional visitor, mainly winter


Northern Flicker

Colaptes auratus

Fairly common winter resident, “Yellow-shafted” is about 75% of sightings, “Red-shafted” 25%


Caracaras and Falcons (Falconidae)


Crested Caracara

Caracara cheriway

Common permanent resident.


American Kestrel

Falco sparverius

Common winter resident



Falco columbarius

Uncommon winter resident

Aplomado Falcon

Falco femoralis

This species historically ranged over the grasslands of South Texas. including Nueces County/ It's status in the county is uncertain, but there are no records of breeding, and no nest or egg specimens. A hacking/introduction program has been in operation on the Texas Coast since the early 1990s, and several Aplomados have been seen as a result of this program. Human-introduction species in general do not qualify for this list, although they may do so at which time a reproducing population once again exists, and the species is recognized as a naturally-occurring species. However, Aplomado Falcon has a documented occurrence from the time it was naturally occurring; F. B. Armstrong collected an Aplomado Falcon at Corpus Christi Mar. 19, 1898, which appears to be the only specimen from the Central Coast from the days of naturally-occurring birds.  The specimen is housed at the British Museum. (From Packard and Hagar, 1950)

Peregrine Falcon

Falco peregrinus

Fairly common migrant and winter resident


Prairie Falcon

Falco mexicanus

Rare migrant and winter visitor.

Tyrant Flycatchers (Tyrannidae)


 Olive-sided Flycatcher

Contopus cooperi

Common spring and fall migrant


Western Wood-Pewee

Contopus sordidulus

One record:

1 Oct. 2011 One bird audio-recorded and photographed on Mustang Island, TPRF, NAB Vol. 66, pg. 124.

 11 Oct. 2011 One at Paradise Pond, identified by vocalization, TPRF.

Eastern Wood-Pewee

Contopus virens

Common migrant, formerly a rare breeder


Yellow-bellied Flycatcher

Empidonax flaviventris

Common migrant


Acadian Flycatcher

Empidonax virescens

Common spring migrant, uncommon fall migrant


Alder Flycatcher

Empidonax alnorum

Common migrant


Willow Flycatcher

 Empidonax traillii

Common migrant


Least Flycatcher

Empidonax minimus

Common migrant


Hammond’s Flycatcher

Empidonax hammondii

Accidental: two records

10 Oct 1988, one bird studied in detail (AB 1989)

16 Jan  2011-early March 2011 One bird at Rose Hill Cemetery, TPRF, NAB Vol. 65, No 2


Gray Flycatcher

Empidonax wrightii

Accidental: One record

29 Aug 2001 North Padre Island, one bird video-taped. (NAB Vol. 56, No. 2, 2002)


Black Phoebe

Sayornis nigricans

Rare visotor in winter


Eastern Phoebe

Sayornis phoebe

Common winter resident


Say’s Phoebe

Sayornis saya

Rare visitor in spring, fall, winter


Vermilion Flycatcher

Pyrocephalus rubinus

Uncommon migrant and winter resident


Ash-throated Flycatcher

Myiarchus cinerascens

Uncommon summer resident, rare in winter


Great Crested Flycatcher

Myiarchus crinitus

Common spring and fall migrant


Brown-crested Flycatcher

Myiarchus tyrannulus

Common summer resident, rare in winter


Great Kiskadee

Pitangus sulphuratus

Common resident, increasing in numbers


Sulphur-bellied Flycatcher

Myiodynastes luteiventris


2 Accepted records:

27-29 Aug 1993       Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 1994-20) (AB 48:129)

30 Apr-2 May 2003  Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2003-38; TPRF 2098)

22 May 2011 Paradise Pond, Port Aransas (TBRC 2014-42; TPRF

12 Oct. 2011 Paradise Pond, Port Aransas (TBRC 2011-085)
(This record is accepted as "Sulphur-bellied/Streaked Flycatcher")

29 Sept 2013 Paradise Pond, Port Aransas (TBRC 2013-56; TPRF 3157)

1-3 May 2014 Packery Channel (TBRC 2014-26; TPRF 3196)

Piratic Flycatcher

Legatus leucophaius

Accidental: One accepted record:

3-6 May 2008            Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2008-32; TPRF 2549)


Tropical Kingbird

Tyrannus melancholicus

Accidental,  2 Records:

30 Dec  2001 One calling bird at Rose Hill Cemetery (NAB)

26 Sept -15 Oct. 2011 Paradise Pond, Port Aransas, one bird calling

May 25-Oct. 2011 A family group of TRKIs found at Heritage Park, downtown Corpus Christi, with
an adult bird seen feeding a fledgling.

June-July 2013 A family group of five birds seen in North Park, included young juveniles

Couch’s Kingbird

Tyrannus couchii

Common permanent resident


Western Kingbird

Tyrannus verticalis

Common migrant, rare breeder


 Eastern Kingbird

Tyrannus tyrannus

Common migrant


Gray Kingbird

Tyrannus dominicensis

Accidental: Three records:

23 May-1 Jun 1992  Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 1992-74; TPRF 1082) (AB 46:449)

26-29 Oct 2006        Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2006-115; TPRF 2458)

6-21 Nov 2007         Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2007-83; TPRF 2518)


Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

Tyrannus forficatus

 Common migrant and summer resident


Fork-tailed Flycatcher

Tyrannus savana

Accidental: two accepted records:

 30 Apr 2011 Pollywog Ponds, Corpus Christi, (TBRC 2011-053)

 22 April 2015 Paradise Pond, Port Aransas (TBRC 2015-028)

 Shrikes (Laniidae)


Loggerhead Shrike

Lanius ludovicianus

Common permanent resident


Vireos (Vireonidae)


White-eyed Vireo

Vireo griseus

Common permanent resident


Bell’s Vireo

Vireo bellii

Uncommon migrant


Black-capped Vireo

Vireo atricapilla

Two records:

 21 April 2006 one bird from Calallen section of Corpus Christi (NAB)

2 June 2006 one adult bird at Blucher Park photographed by Sekula (TPRF)


Yellow-throated Vireo

Vireo flavifrons

Fairly common spring and fall migrant


Plumbeous Vireo

Vireo plumbeus

Rare winter visitor

Several records


Cassin’s Vireo

Vireo cassinii

Rare winter visitor

One record:

16 Nov 1999 one bird photographed, video-taped and audio-recorded at Rose Hill Cemetery,

Several sight records at the same location in subsequent winters


Blue-headed Vireo

Vireo solitarius

Common migrant and winter resident


Warbling Vireo

Vireo gilvus

Common spring and fall migrant

 One documented winter record: Jan. 23, 2013

Philadelphia Vireo

Vireo philadelphicus

Common spring and fall migrant


Red-eyed Vireo

Vireo olivaceus

Common spring and fall migrant


Yellow-green Vireo

Vireo flavoviridis

Rare migrant

Two records prior to delisting from TBRC review list in 2004, several sight and photographic records  since that date.

25 May 2002 North Padre Island, NUE (TBRC 2002-63)

1 Jun 2002    North Padre Island, NUE (TBRC 2002-70)

9 July 2014,  Blucher Park, nesting observed, young being fed, nest empty two days later. 


Black-whiskered Vireo

Vireo altiloquus

Rare migrant

Seven accepted records:

15 Apr 1992  Packery Channel, NUE (TBRC 1992-67) (AB 46:450)

17 May 1992  Packery Channel, NUE (TBRC 1992-80) (AB 46:450)

30 Apr-1 May 1993  Packery Channel, NUE (TBRC 1993-87; TPRF 1132) (AB 47:432)

24 Apr 1995   Packery Channel, NUE (TBRC 1995-90) (FN 49:277)

12 May 2009  Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 2009-47)

10 April 2011 Port Aransas( TBRC 2011-39; TPRF 2952)

 16 May 2011 Port Aransas (TBRC 2011-63)

Jays and Crows (Corvidae)


Green Jay

Cyanocorax yncas

Fairly common permanent resident, populations increasing


Blue Jay

Cyanocitta cristata

Rare winter visitor


Chihuahuan Raven

Corvus cryptoleucus

Rare visitor, probably wandering family groups

One specimen:

1924 from Laureles section of King Ranch, Nueces County, Cornell University Museum of Vertebrates Catalogue number 9844

Several sight records


Larks (Alaudidae)


Horned Lark

Eremophila alpestris

Common permanent resident


Swallows (Hirundinidae)


Purple Martin

Progne subis

Common migrant and summer resident


Tree Swallow

Tachycineta bicolor

Common migrant and uncommon winter resident


Northern Rough-winged Swallow

Stelgidopteryx serripennis

Common spring and fall migrant, rare in winter


Bank Swallow

Riparia riparia

Common spring and fall migrant


Cliff Swallow

Petrochelidon pyrrhonota

Common migrant and summer resident


Cave Swallow

Petrochelidon fulva

Common migrant and summer resident. A few are present in winter.


Barn Swallow

Hirundo rustica

Common spring and fall migrant, occasional breeder


Chickadees and Titmice (Paridae)


Carolina Chickadee

Poecile carolinensis

Rare visitor, mainly winter


Black-crested Titmouse

Baeolophus atricristatus

Common permanent resident


Verdin (Remizidae)



Auriparus flaviceps

Common permanent resident


Nuthatches (Sittidae)


Red-breasted Nuthatch

Sitta canadensis

Rare and irregular winter visitor


Creepers (Certhiidae)


Brown Creeper

Certhia americana

Rare fall and winter visitor


Wrens (Troglodytidae)


Cactus Wren

Campylorhynchus brunneicapillus

Uncommon permanent resident


Rock Wren

Salpinctes obsoletus

Accidental, one published record

Late Nov. 1977 Two at Port Aransas for about two weeks (AB, 1978)


Carolina Wren

Thryothorus ludovicianus

Common permanent resident


Bewick’s Wren

Thryomanes bewickii

Fairly common permanent resident


House Wren

Troglodytes aedon

Common migrant and winter resident


Winter Wren

Troglodytes hiemalis

Uncommon winter resident.


Sedge Wren

Cistothorus platensis

Common winter resident


Marsh Wren

Cistothorus palustris

Common winter resident


Gnatcatchers and Gnatwrens (Polioptilidae)


Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

Polioptila caerulea

Common migrant and winter resident, occasional non breeding birds in summer


Kinglets (Regulidae)


Golden-crowned Kinglet

Regulus satrapa

Uncommon migrant and winter resident


Ruby-crowned Kinglet

Regulus calendula

Common winter resident


Thrushes (Turdidae)


Eastern Bluebird

Sialia sialis

Fairly common winter resident, uncommon breeder


Mountain Bluebird

Sialia currucoides

Rare winter visitor, several records


Townsend’s Solitaire

Myadestes townsendi

Accidental. One record

Dec. 24, 2011 – Jan. 2, 2012 Port Aransas Paradise Pond (pending publication, photos to TPRF)

There is also a Nueces County specimen of this species collected by Armstrong or Priour 14 Feb. 1886; American Museum of Natural History #3088. Since this specimen was taken prior to county boundary realignments, and since we do not know the specific locale of the specimen at this time, we cannot be certain that it was not taken in what is modern-day Kleberg or Jim Wells County.



Catharus fuscescens

Fairly common spring migrant, uncommon fall migrant


Gray-cheeked Thrush

Catharus minimus

Common spring migrant, uncommon fall migrant


Swainson’s Thrush

Catharus ustulatus

Common spring migrant, uncommon fall migrant

One winter record, a bird at Paradise Pond, Port Aransas, until Dec. 26, 2012. NAB Vol. 66, No. 2, pg. 313


Hermit Thrush

Catharus guttatus

Common winter resident


Wood Thrush

Hylocichla mustelina

Common spring and fall migrant, rare in winter


Clay-colored Thrush

Turdus grayi

Rare visitor: mainly in winter. Five accepted records in TBRC prior to delisting in 1998.

Several sightings since 1998


American Robin

Turdus migratorius

Uncommon to common winter resident; irregular


Aztec Thrush

Ridgwayia pinicola

Accidental: two accepted records:

30 Jan 1979  Port Aransas, NUE (TBRC 1988-27) (AB 33:296)

16-20 May 1996  Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 1996-71; TPRF 1496) (FN 50:304)


Mockingbirds and Thrashers (Mimidae)


Gray Catbird

Dumetella carolinensis

Common migrant and winter resident


Northern Mockingbird

Mimus polyglottos

Common permanent resident


Sage Thrasher

Oreoscoptes montanus

Rare fall and winter visitor with several sight records. Fall 2011 was an invasion year, with sightings of 7-8 birds, mainly at Port Aransas.


Brown Thrasher

Toxostoma rufum

Uncommon migrant and winter visitor


Long-billed Thrasher

Toxostoma longirostre

Common permanent resident


Curve-billed Thrasher

Toxostoma curvirostre

Fairly common permanent resident


Starlings (Sturnidae)


European Starling

Sturnus vulgaris

Common permanent resident


Wagtails and Pipits (Motacillidae)


American Pipit

Anthus rubescens

Common migrant and winter resident


Sprague’s Pipit

Anthus spragueii

Uncommon migrant and winter resident


Waxwings (Bombycillidae)


Cedar Waxwing

Bombycilla cedrorum 1

Fairly common and irregular winter visitor, with occurrences into late spring


Longspurs and Snow Buntings (Calcariidae)


Chestnut-collared Longspur

Calcarius ornatus

Rare winter visitor, many records


Smith’s Longspur

Calcarius pictus

Mar. 26, 1973 One bird in breeding plumage seen by two observers in a grassy area on Mustang Island. (AB 1973)

 McCown's Longspur

Rynchophanes mccownii

Two specimen records
Feb. 13 1899 in the locale of Corpus Christi, skin FMNH # 48722, a female, in the W.E. Snyder Collection,  Field Museum, Chicago, IL
Feb. 22, 1899 in the locale of Corpus Christi, skin FMNH # 103776, a male, in the W.E. Snyder Collection, Field Museum, Chicago, IL

Wood-Warblers (Parulidae)



Seiurus aurocapilla

Common spring and fall migrant, uncommon in winter


Worm-eating Warbler

Helmitheros vermivorum

Fairly common spring migrant, uncommon fall migrant


Louisiana Waterthrush

Parkesia motacilla

Common spring and fall migrant


Northern Waterthrush

Parkesia noveboracensis

Common spring and fall migrant, occasional in winter


Golden-winged Warbler

Vermivora chrysoptera

Fairly common spring migrant, occasional fall migrant


Blue-winged Warbler

Vermivora cyanoptera

Common spring migrant, fairly common fall migrant


Black-and-white Warbler

Mniotilta varia

Common spring and fall migrant, a few winter


Prothonotary Warbler

Protonotaria citrea

Common spring migrant, fairly common fall migrant


Swainson’s Warbler

Limnothlypis swainsonii

Uncommon spring migrant, occasional fall migrant


Tennessee Warbler

Oreothlypis peregrina

Common spring and fall migrant


Orange-crowned Warbler

Oreothlypis celata

Common winter resident


Nashville Warbler

Oreothlypis ruficapilla

Common spring and fall migrant


MacGillivray’s Warbler

Geothlypis tolmiei

Rare but regular migrant, several sight records


Mourning Warbler

Geothlypis philadelphia

Fairly common spring migrant, common fall migrant


Kentucky Warbler

Geothlypis formosa

Common spring and fall migrant


Common Yellowthroat

Geothlypis trichas

Common migrant and winter resident


Hooded Warbler

Setophaga citrina

Common spring migrant, fairly common fall migrant


American Redstart

Setophaga ruticilla

Common spring and fall migrant


Cape May Warbler

Setophaga tigrina

Rare but regular spring migrant, rare fall migrant


Cerulean Warbler

Setophaga cerulea

Uncommon spring migrant, rare fall migrant

Lucy's Warbler

Setophaga luciae

Accidental. One record:

11-12 Oct. 2014 Port Aransas NAB Vol. 69, No. 1, pg. 118

Northern Parula

Setophaga americana

Common spring and fall migrant. Rare in winter.


Tropical Parula

Setophaga pitiayumi

Rare visitor, mainly in spring. There are several sight and photographed records.


Magnolia Warbler

Setophaga magnolia

Common spring and fall migrant


Bay-breasted Warbler

Setophaga castanea

Fairly common spring migrant, rare fall migrant


Blackburnian Warbler

Setophaga fusca

Common spring migrant, fairly common fall migrant


Yellow Warbler

Setophaga petechia

Common spring and fall migrant. Rare in winter.


Chestnut-sided Warbler

Setophaga pensylvanica

Common spring migrant, fairly common fall migrant


Blackpoll Warbler

Setophaga striata

Fairly common spring migrant, occasional fall migrant


Black-throated Blue Warbler

Setophaga cerulescens

Rare migrant, with spring and fall records.


Palm Warbler

Setophaga palmarum

Uncommon spring and fall migrant. Occasional in winter.


Pine Warbler

Setophaga pinus

Fairly common winter resident


Yellow-rumped Warbler

Setophaga coronata

Common winter resident

Grace's Warbler

Setophaga graciae

Accidental. One record:

23 Sept 2014 (1) Paradise Pond, Port Aransas NAB Vol. 68 No. 1 pg. 109

Yellow-throated Warbler

Setophaga dominica

Fairly common spring and fall migrant. Uncommon in winter.


Prairie Warbler

Setophaga discolor

Rare spring and fall migrant


Black-throated Gray Warbler

Setophaga nigrescens

Rare migrant. Several sight and photographed records.


Townsend’s Warbler

Setophaga townsendi

Rare migrant, mainly spring. Several sight and photographed records.

 One winter record Jan 14, 2013

Hermit Warbler

Setophaga occidentalis

Rare to Accidental: Four records:

 1 May 2005 A female was photographed at Packery Channel, North Padre Island (NAB)

21 Apr 2007 A female was found at Paradise Pond, Port Aransas (NAB)

9 April  2008 A male was photographed at Paradise Pond, Port Aransas (NAB)

3-17 April 2010 One at Paradise Pond, Port Aransas (NAB)


Black-throated Green Warbler

Setophaga virens

Common spring and fall migrant. Rare in winter.


Rufous-capped Warbler

Basileuterus rufifrons

Accidental: One record:

19 Dec 1992 Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 1993-55) (AB 47:277, 845)


Golden-crowned Warbler

Basileuterus culicivorus

Accidental: One accepted record:

25-29 Apr 2001         Packery Channel, NUE (TBRC 2001-90; TPRF 1941)


Canada Warbler

Cardellina canadensis

Common spring and fall migrant


Wilson’s Warbler

Cardellina pusilla

Fairly common spring migrant, common fall migrant


Red-faced Warbler

Cardellina rubrifrons

Accidental: One record:

5-10 May 2005  Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2005-70; TPRF 2312)


Painted Redstart

Myioborus pictus

Accidental: Two records:

Oct. 2, 2001, one bird photographed at  Packery Channel, North Padre Island,

April 12, 2004, One bird photographed at Packery Channel, North Padre Island


Slate-throated Redstart

Myioborus miniatus

Accidental: One record:

10 Apr 2002 (2)  Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2002-49; TPRF 2032)


Yellow-breasted Chat

Icteria virens

Common spring and fall migrant. Rare in winter


Emberizids (Emberizidae)


Olive Sparrow

Arremonops rufivirgatus

Common permanent resident


Green-tailed Towhee

Pipilo chlorurus

Occasional to rare winter visitor.


Spotted Towhee

Pipilo maculatus

Fairly common winter resident.


Eastern Towhee

Pipilo erythrophthalmus

Occasional winter resident


Rufous-crowned Sparrow

Aimophila ruficeps

Accidental: One record

Winter, 1980 One at feeder in Calallen (AB 1981)


Cassin’s Sparrow

Peucaea cassinii

Common permanent resident


American Tree Sparrow

Spizella arborea

Accidental. Two records:

Dec. 19, 2004 one found on North Padre Island, photographed (NAB 2005)

Nov. 18, 2005 One bird found at exact spot of 2004 sighting (NAB 2006)


Chipping Sparrow

Spizella passerina

Common migrant and winter resident


Clay-colored Sparrow

Spizella pallida

Common migrant, occasional winter resident


Brewer’s Sparrow

Spizella breweri

Rare migrant and winter visitor

Three records:

17 April 1998  one at Packery Channel, North Padre Island, (NAB 1998)

 25 Nov 2000 one at Pollywog Pond, Corpus Christi

15 Oct  2011 One seen and photographed at  Packery Channel


Field Sparrow

Spizella pusilla

Fairly common migrant and winter resident


Vesper Sparrow

Pooecetes gramineus

Fairly common migrant and winter resident


Lark Sparrow

Chondestes grammacus

Common permanent resident


Black-throated Sparrow

Amphispiza bilineata

Rare. One published record:

8 April 2008 from North Padre Island, photographed (NAB 2008)

The Field Museum in Chicago possesses five specimens of this species, lableled "Nueces County, Texas" and  collected between 1896 and 1899. The locality where the birds were collected is unknown, so we cannot be certain that these are valid to modern-day Nueces County, since both Kleberg and Jim Wells Counties were included in Nueces at that time.


Lark Bunting

Calamospiza melanocorys

Uncommon winter resident


Savannah Sparrow

Passerculus sandwichensis

Common winter resident


Grasshopper Sparrow

Ammodramus savannarum

Common winter resident


 Le Conte’s Sparrow

Ammodramus leconteii

Uncommon winter resident


Nelson’s Sparrow

Ammodramus nelsoni

Uncommon winter resident


Seaside Sparrow

Ammodramus maritimus

Fairly common permanent resident


Fox Sparrow

Passerella iliaca

Rare to occasional winter resident


Song Sparrow

Melospiza melodia

Uncommon winter residedent


Lincoln’s Sparrow

Melospiza lincolnii

Common winter resident


Swamp Sparrow

Melospiza georgiana

Common winter resident


White-throated Sparrow

Zonotrichia albicollis

Uncommon winter resident


Harris’s Sparrow

Zonotrichia querula

Rare in winter. Several sightings.


White-crowned Sparrow

Zonotrichia leucophrys

Fairly common winter resident


Dark-eyed Junco

Junco hyemalis

Occasional winter visitor


Cardinals, Piranga Tanagers and Allies (Cardinalidae)


Hepatic Tanager

Piranga flava

One confirmed record:

25 May 1920 (Blacklock and Rappole) by A. H. Cordier. Several sight records.


Summer Tanager

Piranga rubra

Common migrant, has bred nearby Nueces County.


Scarlet Tanager

Piranga olivacea

Fairly common spring migrant, uncommon fall migrant.


Western Tanager

Piranga ludoviciana

Rare but regular visitor, most records from winter and spring.


Crimson-collared Grosbeak

Rhodothraupis celaeno

Accidental. One accepted record:

12-23 Dec 2010        Corpus Christi, NUE (TBRC 2010-86; TPRF 2924)


Northern Cardinal

Cardinalis cardinalis

Common permanent resident



Cardinalis sinuatus

Common permanent resident


Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Pheucticus ludovicianus

Common spring and fall migrant. Rare in winter.


Black-headed Grosbeak

Pheucticus melanocephalus

Rare migrant and winter visitor


Blue Bunting

Cyanocompsa parellina

Accidental. One accepted record.

19-31 March 2011 Corpus Christi (TBRC 2011-037 TPRF 2950)


Blue Grosbeak

Passerina caerulea

Common spring and fall migrant. Has nested in the county.


Lazuli Bunting

Passerina amoena

Rare visitor, mainly spring and fall, but winter records exist.


Indigo Bunting

Passerina cyanea

Common spring and fall migrant, uncommon winter resident.


Varied Bunting

Passerina versicolor

Rare visitor, several spring sightings.


Painted Bunting

Passerina ciris

Common migrant and summer resident



Spiza americana

Common migrant and summer resident


Blackbirds (Icteridae)



Dolichonyx oryzivorus

Occasional migrant, mainly spring


Red-winged Blackbird

Agelaius phoeniceus

Common permanent resident


Eastern Meadowlark

Sturnella magna

Common permanent resident


Western Meadowlark

Sturnella neglecta

Common winter resident


Yellow-headed Blackbird

Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus

Occasional migrant and winter visitor


Rusty Blackbird

Euphagus carolinus

Rare: A few sight records, two photograph records:

2 Jan- mid March, 2011, Five birds present at Pollywog Ponds (TPRF)

17 April 2011 One at Port Aransas NAB No. Vol.  65 No. 3, pg. 483, TPRF

1 Mar 2015 One on North Padre Island, TPRF

Brewer’s Blackbird

Euphagus cyanocephalus

Fairly common winter resident


Common Grackle

Quiscalus quiscula

Rare to Occasional visitor, mainly winter


Great-tailed Grackle

Quiscalus mexicanus

Common permanent resident


Boat-tailed Grackle

Quiscalus major

Accidental. Status not fully known.

31 Mar 2014 One bird photographed at Port Aransas, TPRF

8 Mar 2015 One photographed at Leonabelle Turnbull Birding Center, eBird record

Bronzed Cowbird

Molothrus aeneus

Common permanent resident

Brown-headed Cowbird

Molothrus ater

Common permanent resident


Orchard Oriole

Icterus spurius

Common spring and fall migrant


Hooded Oriole

Icterus cucullatus

Uncommon migrant and breeder.


Bullock’s Oriole

Icterus bullockii

Fairly common summer resident


Audubon’s Oriole

Icterus graduacauda

Rare to occasional permanent resident


Baltimore Oriole

Icterus galbula

Common spring and fall migrant

 Scott's Oriole

Icterus parasorum

Accidental. One record, seen by multiple observers:

20 Sept. 2014 Blucher Park, NAB Vol. 69 No. 1 pg. 119

Fringilline and Cardueline Finches and Allies (Fringillidae)


Purple Finch

Haemorhous purpureus

Rare: Several historical sightings,

11 Nov 1962 “In the Nueces”, which was a term applied to the lower Nueces River floodplain in and around Corpus Christi.  (AFN-1963)

22-23 February 1967, “A minor influx with several birds at Sablatura Park on Feb. 22-23, K. McCracken.” (AFN-1967)


House Finch

Haemorhous mexicanus

Occasional visitor. Common slightly further westward.


Red Crossbill

Loxia curvirostra


28 Jan 1969, One bird in Corpus Christi, briefly seen by experienced observer (AFN-1969)

13 Nov. 1972 Thirteen birds at Port Aransas seen by Warren Pulich (AFN-1972)


Pine Siskin

Spinus pinus

Fairly common, irregular winter resident


Lesser Goldfinch

Spinus psaltria

Fairly common permanent resident


American Goldfinch

Spinus tristis

Common winter resident


Old World Sparrows (Passeridae)


House Sparrow

Passer domesticus

Common permanent resident



 Egyptian Goose

Alopochen aegyptiacus

Now considered as established in several areas of the United States, including parts of Texas. Not yet recognized by TBRC as part of the natural avifauna in Texas. Not known to be self-sustaining in Nueces County, but populations are tending to increase.

Eurasian Wigeon 

Anas penelope  

There is one published sight record;

Otto Widmann writes in the Auk (volume, page?) that “On Dec. 20, 1921, Mr. Sidney T. Bixby of St Louis shot from the yacht of Mr. Jos. Pulitzer, Jr. at Corpus Christi, Texas, a fine male European Widgeon. It was at first taken for a hybrid and has been mounted by Mr. F. Schwarz of St. Louis….:  O. Widmann, St. Louis, Mo.” (The specimen has not been located. No further details are provided and the record is not treated as an accepted record by TBRC)


Red-necked Grebe  

Podiceps grisegena 

Has likely occurred as a rare winter visitor, but there are no documented records.

  American Flamingo

Phoenicopterus ruber

Several sight records, as well as documented records in nearby counties. Has almost certainly occurred in Nueces. Strecker (1912) writes.."in former years, a frequent visitor, probably a summer resident, of the coast counties." 

Yellow-nosed Albatross  

Thalassarche chlororhynchos  

There is an accepted record from Aransas County, two from Willacy County, and a sight record from Kenedy County. Almost certainly occurs rarely in offshore Nueces County Gulf waters.


White-tailed Tropicbird

Phaethon lepturus

There have been several sight records of this species but there is no specimen or photograph needed for comfirmation.


Northern Goshawk

Accipiter gentilis  

There is one unaccepted TBRC record sighting from 1999. There are a few sight records. 


Gray Hawk

Buteo nitidus

There is one compelling sight record from 1948 from Naval Air Station, Encinal Peninsula by Fred Packard.

Yellow Rail

Coturnicops noveboracensis

This species almost certainly inhabits the short grass marshes and wet fields of Nueces County, but to date no specimen, published sight record, or photographic record has been found.


Arctic Tern

Sterna paradisaea

There are several sight records for this species from Nueces County, but no TBRC-accepted record. One of the most compelling records is from the Port Aransas jetty 19 Aug 1968 in which a bird identified as an Arctic Tern was seen while feeding with Common Terns.(AFN-1969)  All observers, Victor Emanuel, John Rowlett and Edgar Kincaid, were familiar with the species. 

Green Parakeet

Aratinga holochlora 

During the 1990s, there were at least two small populations in the CalAllen and Hilltop Community Center areas. These populations apparently died out and no other viable populations have been found. Breeding success is unknown.

 Red-crowned Parrot

Amazona viridigenalis

Free-flying birds have been seen for many years, but there is no evidence of a sustaining population.


Black Swift

Cypseloides niger

There are sight records for this species in 21 Sept. 1972 and 24 Sept. 1983. There is no fully documented, accepted record for Texas for this species, and it is treated as a “Presumptive” species by the TBRC. I


Vaux’s Swift

Chaetura vauxi

There are sight records from as early as May 6-8, 1946; a flock of birds in Corpus Christi sighted by C. Hagar. No documented records of this species have been produced for the state of Texas, and the TBRC maintains the species on the Presumptive Species list.

Carolina Parakeet

Conuropsis carolinensis

Extinct. This species apparently ranged south and east to Nueces County in the 19th century.

American Crow

Corvus brachyrhynchos

One published record of a single bird south of Corpus Christi 2 Nov 1985 which could be questioned for origin, since the species is common as a captive pet. This species is common south to the Guadalupe River and Mission River basin, and may have historically ranged into Nueces County. (AB Spring 1986, Vol. 40, No. 1)

Cordilleran Flycatcher

Empidonax occidentalis

There are sight records of birds thought to be “Western Flycatcher”, which would indicate this species or Pacific-Slope Flycatcher, E. difficils.


Violet-green Swallow

Tachycineta thalassina

There are several sight records for this species, but no photo, specimen or published record exists.


Tufted Titmouse

Baeolophus bicolor

There are constant sight reports for this species, which can most likely be attributed to Black-crested Titmouse with paler crests. Tufted is a sedentary species that does not occur less than 50 to 75 miles from Nueces County in its pure form. Then, there is a wide intergrade belt, in which most, or all birds are Tufted x Black-crested mixtures, which have a tan or brown forehead. If a "textbook" Tufted could be carefully studied and photographed, it could be a candidate to include in accepted species.


Varied Thrush

Ixoreus naevius

One sight record: “Downtown Corpus visiting bird bath” 4-6 April 1974 ( AB: 28:824) reported by Kay McCracken. This is an example of a TBRC review species that apparently did not have sufficient evidence in which to archive in the Accepted column. This record was at the early onset of the Texas Bird Records Committee.More details are needed on this record.


Bohemian Waxwing

Bombycilla garrulus

A sight record from Corpus Christi in late March, 1978 was probably an accurate record. The bird was well-studied, and a good description was made by the observer. It was not submitted to TBRC. The sighting was the subject of a column by Kay McCracken published in the Corpus Christi Caller-Times at that time.

Connecticut Warbler:

Oporornis agilis

Although there are several sight records in Nueces County for this species, there has never been a record that has been accepted by the TBRC.

Botteri’s Sparrow

Peucaea botterii

This species has occurred in both San Patricio and Kleberg Counties, which are the counties adjacent to Nueces County on the north and south. There is belief that it may occur rarely in Nueces. There is a specimen for Nueces County taken by Armstrong (date?) in the American Museum of Natural History. This would have been prior to county boundary realignment and we cannot be certain at this time that the record was not collected in modern-day Jim Wells or Kleberg County.


Henslow’s Sparrow

Ammodramus henslowii

There are sight records, but no specimen or photograph for this species for Nueces County.

Scaly-breasted Munia (Nutmeg Mannikin)

Lonchura punctulata

A common cage bird, with origins in Asia, and a subject of releases and escapes. A few are found in Nueces County, and the population is probably increasing as the species seems to be on the way to becoming established. TOS Checklist does not yet includes this species.


 AB = American Birds Magazine

AFN = Audubon Field Notes

FN = Field Notes Magazine

NAB = North American Birds

TBRC = Texas Bird Records Committee

 TPRF = Texas Photo Records File, and its modern-day equivalent;

Thanks to Gene Blacklock and Matt Heindel for reviewing the checklist document and for helpful comments and suggestions.




Rare Birds of Texas Master List of Review Species, 14 May 2011 with updates, Eric Carpenter, Greg W. Lasley, Mark W. Lockwood, and Chuck Sexton (excerpts reproduced with author’s permission).

 The Texas Ornithological Society Handbook of Texas Birds, Mark W. Lockwood, Brush Freeman. 2004

 Birds of the Texas Coastal Bend, Abundance and Distribution, John H. Rappole and Gene W. Blacklock, 1985

 The Bird Life of Texas, Harry C. Oberholser, 1974

 Birds of the Central Coast of Texas, Packard and Hagar, 1950

 Audubon Field Notes, American Birds, Field Notes, North American Birds

 The Birds of Texas, Baylor University Bulletin, John K. Strecker, Jr. 1912

© Mel Cooksey, 2016

Website Builder