Birds of Putnam County, Tennessee
Species Accounts, Part I: Geese through Terns

Second Edition (2006
–2016)

Stephen J. Stedman

 

To access the species from Pigeon through Weaver Finch, click on the underlined part of this sentence.

 

Greater White-fronted Goose

Anser albifrons

            Status:A rare winter and spring visitor. All Records: 28 November–16 December 1998 (1 immature) BOP (BHS et al.; Stedman 1999b); 27 March 1999 (1) CCP (SJS et al.); 20 April 2007 (1 immature) Cookeville Golf Course (SJS photo, LC); 17–18 December 2011 (10) Lexus Pond (MJH, JuF, Peggy Huffstetler, SJS photo, JCF)Remarks: Observed at CCP; see CBC.  The first two records possibly refer to the same wintering individual, which belonged to the Greenland subspecies.

Snow Goose

Chen caerulescens

            Status: A very uncommon winter resident.  High Count: 30 (26 October 1992, SJS). Extreme Dates: 22 October 1992 (BHS)–26 May 1999 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF and CCP; see CBC and SBC. Rare or absent after mid-March during most years.  Photo [immature blue morph]: Winter 1989–1990, SJS.

 Ross’s Goose

Chen rossii

            Status: A rare winter visitor.  All Records: 26 November 1998–3 January 1999 (1 immature) BOP and CLN (SJS, BHS et al.; Stedman 1999b); 17–18/20 April 2002 (1 adult) John Stites' farm on Liberty Church Rd. near Jackson Co. line (John Stites, Evelyne Stites, SJS photos, Jason Carbaugh/Daniel L. Combs); 6 February 2014 (3) Moss Rd. (JM photo).  Remarks: Observed at CLN; see CBC.

Cackling Goose

Branta hutchinsii  

            Status: A rare winter visitor.  All Records: 9 December 1997 (1) CCP (SJS). Remarks: Observed at CCP. Split from the following species by decree of the 45th Supplement to the AOU Check-list.

Canada Goose

Branta canadensis

            Status: A common to abundant (or even superabundant) permanent resident.  Breeding Evidence: Downy young with adults (3 May 1991, SJS).  High Count: 739 (17 December 2011, CBC).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see BBC, CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, SRS, WBPS, and WRS.  Three collared Canada Geese observed during winter in Putnam County were originally marked in Ontario, Canada; another was originally marked in Kentucky.  Establishment of the local flock began in the mid-1980s (see CBC); most members of the local flock have dispersed within a radius of 80 km, but some have wandered much farther afield (fide DLC).  Photo [neck-collared individual]: 4 October 2001, SJS

Mute Swan

Cygnus olor  

            Status: Rare winter and spring visitor.  All Records: 5 April 1995 (1 adult) CCP (SJS photograph); 15 February 2000 (2 adults) R62 ponds (SJS); 21 January 2001 (2 adults) Locust Grove Rd. (SJS), see WRS; 19 December 2009 (2) Southern Hills Golf Course (EKL, DLC).  Remarks: Observed at CCP; see WRS. An expanding exotic now resident in some parts of Tennessee.

Trumpeter Swan

Cygnus buccinator  

            Status: A rare and recent (2010) winter visitor.  All Records: 14–22 December 2010 (2 adults) City Lake (BHS, SJS et al.), a CBC record in part. Remarks: Observed at CLN; see CBC. A species re-established as a breeder in the Upper Midwest, now expanding rapidly in population number and increasingly observed during winter in many states to the south of that area. Photo: 15 December 2010, Ed Schneider.

Tundra Swan

Cygnus columbianus

           Status: A rare winter and hypothetical spring visitor.  All Records: 6–7 December 1991 (2) CCP (SJS [photographs] et al.); 11 December 1999 (1 immature) CCP (SJS, ND photograph).  Remarks: Observed at CCP. The following record—18 March and 2 April 1990 (2–4) CKV (JWW)—is later than any other spring sighting for Tennessee.  The two Tundra Swans from the second sighting were also observed 15–20 km south in White County 18–19 December 1991 (THR, SJS).

Wood Duck

Aix sponsa

            Status: A permanent resident, uncommon during spring, summer, and fall, and very uncommon during winter.  Breeding Evidence: Female on eggs (29 March 1993, BHS).  High Count: 140 (17 September 2005, FBC).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see BBC, CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, SRS, WBPS, and WRS. Hurst (1977), Bradshaw (1978), and Folkerth (1982) studied Wood Duck breeding biology at CLN. Photo [female]:12 December 2004, SJS.

Gadwall

Anas strepera

            Status: An uncommon to fairly common winter resident.  High Count: 79 (15 December 2007, CBC).  Extreme Dates: 11 September 2007 (BHS)–10 April 2005 (WAW).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, FBC, and WRS.

American Wigeon

Anas americana

            Status: An uncommon winter resident.  High Count: 28 (23 March 1988, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 15 September 2007 (BHS)–11 May 2002 (WAW et al.).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, FBC, and SBC.

American Black Duck

Anas rubripes

            Status: An uncommon winter resident.  High Count: 25 (9 December 1990, SJS, MGB).  Extreme Dates: 15 September 2007 (DAD)–2 April 1991 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, FBC, GBBC, WBPS, and WRS.

Mallard

Anas platyrhynchos

            Status: A permanent resident, uncommon during fall, winter, and spring, and very uncommon during summer.  Breeding Evidence: Downy young with female (13 May 1990, SJS).  High Count: 315 (4 January 2014, JM).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see BBC, CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, SRS, WBPS, and WRS.

Blue-winged Teal

Anas discors

            Status: An uncommon migrant.  High Count: 154 (29 August 1990, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 16 February 2003 (SJS, NSL, Bettie Doyle)–31 May 2003 (SJS); 6 August 2000 (SJS)–5 October 1990 (SJS).  Out-of-Season Records: 21 November–19 December 2001 (1) CCP (SJS photo), this bird had sustained an injured left wing; 28 June 2006 (1 male) CCP (SJS et al.).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, FBC, and SBC. Photo [male and female]: 23 April 2012, SJS.

Northern Shoveler

Anas clypeata

            Status: A winter resident, uncommon during spring and fall, and very uncommon during winter.  High Count: 25 (22 April 1999, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 24 August 2003 (SJS photo)–12 May 2006 (JCF, Richard C. Finch).  Remarks: Observed at CCP and CLN; see CBC.

Northern Pintail

Anas acuta

            Status: A very uncommon winter resident.  High Count: 4 (3 January 1989, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 23 October 1988 (SJS)–10 February 1990 (BHS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF and CCP; see CBC and WRS.

Green-winged Teal

Anas crecca

            Status: An uncommon winter resident.  High Count: 41 (28 November 1998, SJS). Extreme Dates: 30 August 2000 (SJS)–18 April 1988 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC and WRS.

Canvasback

Aythya valisineria  

            Status: A very uncommon winter resident.  High Count: 30+ (1 February 2009, TMS).  Extreme Dates: 10 November 1989 (BHS)–20 April 2011 (JCF, GKE); next latest 28 March 1993 (SJS, BHS).  Remarks: Observed at CCP and CLN; see CBC, WBPS, and WRS.

Redhead

Aythya americana

            Status: A winter resident, uncommon during spring and fall, and very uncommon during winter.  High Count: 70 (8 December 2001, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 31 October 1987 (SJS, BHS)–18 March 1988 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at CCP and CLN; see CBC and GBBC.

Ring-necked Duck

Aythya collaris

            Status: A fairly common winter resident.  High Count: 350 (18 November 1992, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 28 September 1991 (SJS et al.)–12 May 2001 (SBC).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, GBBC, SBC, and WRS. Photo [male]: 18 February 2012, SJS.

Greater Scaup

Aythya marila

            Status: A rare winter visitor.  All Records: 5 December 1988–5 January 1989 (1 male and 1 female) CCP (SJS, BHS); 15 January–2 February 2005 (1 male and 1 female) CCP (SJS, DLC, WAW, DAD); 20 March 2005 (2 males) CCP (SJS, WAW); 30 November–19 December 2008 (1 male) CCP (SJS); 29 November 2014 (SJS, Ronald J. McDonald).  Remarks: Observed at CCP; see CBC.  The Greater Scaup is difficult to separate from Lesser Scaup; observers reporting this species should study the birds in question with a telescope for some time, attempting to obtain a good view of the “nail” on the bill of these birds, as well as other features of these rare diving ducks, including overall size, size of bill, shape of crown, length of wing-stripe on outstretched wing of both sexes; auricular patch of females; and whiteness of dorsal area of males.  Color of sheen on the heads of males is a suggestive, not a definitive, field mark.

Lesser Scaup

Aythya affinis

            Status: An uncommon winter resident.  High Count: 93 (9 March 2009, DJS).  Extreme Dates: 19 October 1989 (SJS)–17 May 2004 (SJS, WAW).  Remarks: Observed at CCP and CLN; see CBC, GBBC, SBC, and WRS.

Surf Scoter

Melanitta perspicillata

            Status: A rare spring and very uncommon fall visitor.  All Records: 23 October 1988 (1 female or immature male) CCP (SJS, photographs); 29 November 1992 (1 immature) pond east of Monterey (SJS, BHS); 7 May 1996 (1) CCP (TAE); 21 November 1996 (4) CCP (SJS, BHS et al.); 16 November 1997 (1) MOL (SJS); 27 November 1997 (1 immature) CCP (SJS); 1 November 2002 (4 females or immatures) CCP (SJS); 12 December 2004 (1 female or immature) CCP (SJS); 23 May 2006 (1 second-year male) CCP (SJS); and 27 December 2006 (1 female or immature) CCP (SJS); 10 December 2013 (12 [1 ad. male and 11 females or immatures]) CCP (Jonathan Mills [eBird]).  Remarks: Observed at CCP.

White-winged Scoter

Melanitta fusca

            Status: A rare fall and winter visitor.  All Records: 17–29 November 1974 (2) MOL (WJJ); 5–8 November 1989 (1) CCP (SJS photos, BHS); 19 January 1993 (1) CCP (SJS, DLC, THR); 4 December 1995 (1) CCP (TAE); 29–30 October 1997 (1 immature) CCP (SJS); 9 January 1999 (1 immature) CCP (SJS; Stedman 1999b).  Remarks: Observed at CCP. Photo [female or immature]: 5 November 1989, SJS.

Long-tailed Duck

Clangula hyemalis

            Status: A rare late fall/early winter and late spring visitor.  All Records: 17 November–16 December 2000 (1 female) CCP (SJS et al.); 8–11 May 2002 (1 male) CCP (SJS photo, SHF, MPO, LIG, GKE et al.); and 20 December 2003–4 February 2004 (1 juvenile male) CCP (BHS, SJS photo, MJH photo). Remarks: Observed at CCP; see CBC and SBC. Casteel (2001a) blemished the first cited record in several ways: he provided an inaccurate ending date for the bird's stay; he claimed that a male was present on the only date (24 November 2000) that he and one other observer attempted to see the female, but no male was ever seen before, on, or after that date by any other observers, and it is extremely doubtful that a male was present at all; and he made it appear that the male was observed by SJS, who, however, made no such observation.

Bufflehead

Bucephala albeola

            Status: An uncommon winter resident. High Count: 46 (24 November 1990, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 29 October 1988 (SJS)–14 April 2007 (SJS); next earliest 12 April 2003 (SJS, WAW, CEW, NSL, GSK, BB, Thedodore McKnight, Marty McKnight).  Out-of-Season Records: 12 April–9 August 1992 (1) pond east of Monterey (SJS, BHS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, GBBC, and WRS.

Common Goldeneye

Bucephala clangula

            Status: An uncommon winter resident.  High Count: 10 (19 January 1993, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 5 November 1989 (SJS, BHS)–10 April 1989 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at CCP and CLN; see CBC.

Hooded Merganser

Lophodytes cucullatus

            Status: An uncommon winter resident.  High Count: 125 (25 November 1989, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 23 October 1990 (SJS)–21 April 1988 (SJS).  Out-of-Season Records: 8&10 June 1990 (1 immature) CCP (SJS); 19 July 1993 (1 female) CCP (SJS); summer 1994 (1 female) CCP (SJS); summer 1996 (1 female) CCP (SJS).   Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, WBPS, and WRS. Hooded Mergansers may be rare breeders in the county. Note: The Out-of-Season records probably all pertain to one bird.

Common Merganser

Mergus merganser  

            Status: A rare late fall visitor (records listed for early winter and spring are without documentation)All records: 22/23 April 1961 (2) site unspecified (SBC); 18 December 1976 (2) site unspecified (CBC); 21–29 November 2007 (1) CCP (TMS, SJS, BHS et al.); 22 November 2014 (9 [female-plumaged individuals]) CCP (MT photo; HT).  Remarks: See CBC and SBC.  While the CBC record lacks documentation, it falls within the expected period of occurrence for Common Merganser in Tennessee. The SBC record also lacks documentation and is questionable because it occurred on a very late date for this species. Photo [female-plumaged individual]: 23 November 2007, Susan E. Pirolo.

Red-breasted Merganser

Mergus serrator  

            Status: A winter resident, uncommon during spring and fall, and rare to very uncommon during winter.  High Count: 52 (4 December 2000, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 6 November 2002 (SJS)–18 May 2005 (SJS). Remarks: Observed at BUF and CCP; see CBC and SBC.

Ruddy Duck

Oxyura jamaicensis

            Status: An uncommon to very uncommon winter resident.  High Count: 29 (18 December 2005, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 4 October 2000 (SJS, GKE, MPO, GSK)–13 May 2006 (SBC—JCF, CDW, MH, NSL).  Out-of-Season Records: all of June 2006 (1 male) CCP (SJS et al.).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, GBBC, SBC, and WRS.  Prior to the winter of 1998–1999 there were no January records of Ruddy Duck in the county.

Northern Bobwhite

Colinus virginianus

            Status: A uncommon and decreasing permanent resident that becomes hard to detect when not vocal (i.e., from late fall until early spring [see WRS]).  Breeding Evidence: None except presence of singing birds.  High Count: 68 (23 April 1977, SBC).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN, but decreasingly at the second site since the early 2000s and not since the early 1990s at the last site; see BBC, CBC, SBC, SRS, and WRS. Evidence of species’ decrease most evident from SRS data.

Ruffed Grouse

Bonasa umbellus

            Status: A very uncommon permanent resident.  Breeding Evidence: None except presence of birds.  High Count: 3 (8&12 December 1984, RWS; 14 May 1994, SBC). Remarks: See BBC, CBC, SBC, and WBPS.  Mainly or entirely restricted to the eastern end of the county on the eastern escarpment and plateau. Significantly reduced in population numbers and range since the early 1950s when considered common county wide (Schultz 1953).

Wild Turkey

Meleagris gallopavo

            Status: A fairly common and increasing permanent resident.  Breeding Evidence: Hen with young (1 June 2001, SJS).  High Count: 138 (19 December 2009, CBC).  Remarks: Observed at CLN; see BBC, CBC, FBC, SBC, SRS, and WRS. Wild Turkeys are increasing in the county as a result of a very successful restocking program begun in the 1980s (SRS).  Until about 2005 most flocks inhabited the eastern or western ends of the county and stayed close to escarpment slopes; after that year, turkeys began to be found with regularity at flat sites on the rim and plateau, as well as on the escarpments.

Common Loon

Gavia immer  

            Status: An uncommon migrant and rare winter resident.  High Count: 12 (31 March 2013, JCF).  Extreme Dates: 22 October 1989 (SJS)–14 May 1994 (BHS).   Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC and SBC. A typical Common Loon stays one or two days on the larger ponds and lakes of the county; the longest stay occurred 29 January–8 May 1999 at CCP lake (SJS et al.). Common Loons are occasionally observed migrating high overhead during spring, less so during fall when nocturnal migration is possibly more prevalent. Note: There are no records from early to mid-January.

Pied-billed Grebe

Podilymbus podiceps

            Status: A winter resident primarily, fairly common during fall, and uncommon during winter and spring; a very uncommon summer visitor.  High Count: 52 (12 September 1996, SJS). Extreme Dates: Cannot be determined because summering individuals are regularly present.  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, WBPS, and WRS.  Summering mostly noted at CCP.

Horned Grebe

Podiceps  auritus

            Status: An uncommon migrant.  High Count: 46 (18 March 2004, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 4 February 2009 (SJS)–18 April 1988 (SJS); 12 October 1989 (BHS)–30 Dec 1977 (CBC).  Out-of-Season Records: 17 January 2005 (1) CCP (SJS); 8–9 January 2007 (1) CCP (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at CCP and CLN; see CBC.  A typical Horned Grebe stays one or two days on larger ponds and lakes; the longest stay occurred 2–29 November 1992 (1–2) CCP (SJS et al.). Photo: 12 December 2002, SJS.

Double-crested Cormorant

Phalacrocorax auritus

            Status: Formerly an uncommon migrant; slowly becoming a non-breeding permanent resident; occasionally but regularly present during summer by 2006 but still rare to absent during mid-winter though increasing at that season by that year.  High Count: 100+ (14 April 2002, BHS, SJS).  Extreme Dates Prior to 2006: 4 February 1999–2 June 2004 (SJS); 12 August 2000 (SJS)–31 December 2000 (SJS). Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, FBC, and SBC.  Double-crested Cormorants typically stay in the county only a day or two; most are seen singly or in groups numbering five or fewer, with many being immatures.

American White Pelican

Pelecanus erythrorhynchus

Status: A rare fall migrant.  All Records: 12 November 2017, SJS photos. High Count: 9 (12 November 2017, SJS). Remarks: Observed at CCP.

American Bittern

Botaurus lentiginosus

            Status: A rare migrant.  All Records: 15 October 1989 (1) CCP (SJS photos), probably seen a few days earlier (MAS); 9 December 1998 (1) CCP (GKE, SJS; Stedman 1999b); 11 April 1999 (1) near Meadow Creek east of Monterey (RWS).  Remarks: Observed at CCP. Possibly observed in county during May 1968 when an ornithological meeting was held in CKV. The preferred habitat—marshes and other wetlands—of American Bittern is scarce in the county.

Least Bittern

Ixobrychus exilis  

            Status: A rare summer resident and migrant.  Breeding Evidence: Semi-dependent juvenile with adult (2 August 1977, WJJ).  High Count: 2 (2 August 1977, WJJ).  All Records: 7 September 1976 (1) MOL (Morris D. Williams [Williams 1977]); 2 August 1977 (2 seen) CLN (WJJ [Bierly 1978a]); 5 June 1994 (1 heard) CLN (BHS; Stedman and Stedman 1995b); and 19 September 2009 (1 seen) Waterview Rd. northeast of Monterey (BHS). Remarks: Observed at CLN; see BBC and FBC.  Like the preceding species, the Least Bittern is scarce in the county because its preferred habitat, marsh, is also scarce; though not reported from the cattail marsh on lower Martin Creek alongside Rt. 96, it may occur there, if only during migration.

Great Blue Heron

Ardea herodias

            Status: A fairly common and increasing permanent resident.   Breeding Evidence: Used nests (17 December 2005, BHS); occupied rookery (late February 2006, SJS).  High Count: 41 (12 May 2012, SBC).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see BBC, CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, SRS, WBPS, and WRS.  Great Blue Herons have increased in frequency since the 1970s (see CBC and SBC); their year-round presence long suggested breeding in the county, a status finally confirmed 17 December 2005, when a rookery of 6 used nests was found on Dry Valley Rd. (BHS); a view of the rookery 20 March 2008 was provided by DJS (photo).  A Great White Heron, the white morph of the Great Blue Heron, was present at the Happy Hollow Boat Ramp on the Caney Fork River 21 September–11 November 2002 (CDW, SJS photo [27 September 2002], m.ob.; Stedman and Williams 2003).  A count of 28 Great Blue Herons on the 1962 Cookeville CBC undoubtedly refers to a flock of Sandhill Cranes since no other daily count of Great Blue Herons in the county equaled or exceeded 28 until 2006, when the local population had undergone increase for several decades.

Great Egret

Ardea alba

            Status: An uncommon spring, late summer, and early fall visitor; also a rare late fall and early winter visitor.  High Count: 24 (9 October 1994, MAS, AMS, MR).  Extreme Dates: 23 March 1991 (SJS, WHG, DaH, MAS, WAW, CEW)–22 May 1992 (SJS); 7 July 1990 (SJS)–9 October 1994 (MAS, AMS), but see next section.  Out-of-Season Records: 25 November 1993 (1) R62 ponds (SJS, BHS); 12 December 2000 (1) BOP (SJS); 12–25/27 November 2002 (1) CCP (SJS photo/JCF, Richard C. Finch); 4 December 2006 (1) CLN (BHS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see SBC. Photo: 12 May 2002, SJS.

Snowy Egret

Egretta thula

              Status: A very uncommon spring and rare fall visitor.  All Records: 29 March 1988 (1) CCP (SJS photo); 26 May 1991 (1) CCP (MGB); 12 August–10 September 1993 (1) BUF (SJS et al.); 28 April 1998 (1) CCP (SJS); 16 April 2002 (1) CCP (SJS photo); 19 March 2008 (1) CCP (SJS photo); 23 April 2012 (1) CCP (EKL, SJS photo).  Remarks: Observed at CCP and BUF.

Little Blue Heron

Egretta caerulea

            Status: A very uncommon spring and summer visitor.  High Count: 19 (19 August 1990, SJS and BHS).  Extreme Dates: 9 April 1992 (SJS, DaH)–23 April 1961 (SBC); 11 July 1993 (SJS, BHS)–26 September 1993 (SJS, MAS).  Remarks: Observed a BUF, CCP, and CLN; see SBC.  Little Blue Heron has been reported at least eight times; all but one sighting involved 1–3 individuals; fall sightings generally involve immature birds though the herons comprising the high count (above) were entirely adults; the longest stay occurred 27 July–21 August 1992 (1 immature) BUF (SJS et al.).

Cattle Egret

Bubulcus ibis

            Status: A very uncommon spring and rare fall visitor.  All records: 11 or 12 May 1968 (1) CKV (fide Ken Leggett and some Tennessee Ornithological Society members attending the spring meeting of that organization); 17 April 1989 (1—adult) CCP (SJS photo); 28 April 1998 (1—adult) CCP (SJS); 26 October 2002 (1) north of Monterey at Bright farm (BB, HB photos); 13 June 2005 (2—alternate) Tommy Dodson Rd. (DLC); 13 May 2006 (1—alternate) pond at intersection of Lexus Place and Clemmons Rd. (CDW photo) JCF, NSL, MH), a SBC record; 12 April 2007 (1—alternate) Bluff Top Rd. (Timothy R. Riddle, Annette Snow photo); and 12 May 2007 (1—alternate) St. Mary's Rd. (CDW, JCFuson, SJS), a SBC record.  Remarks: Observed at CCP; see SBC.  The egrets seen during June 2005 in the extreme northern part of the county were very probably breeders somewhere in or near the county. Photo: 12 April 2007, AS.

Green Heron

Butorides virescens

            Status: An uncommon summer resident and rare winter visitor.  Breeding Evidence: Fledged young with downy feathers (6 June 1991, SJS).  High Count: 36 (8 August 1990, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 27 March 2007 (MPO)–29 November 2004 (SJS, DAD).  Out-of-Season Records: 18&28 February and 10 March 1990 (1) CLN (SJS, BHS; Stedman and Stedman 1991 [first date only]), a WBPS record; and 13&18 December 1992 (1) Hidden Cove Rd. (SJS, BHS), a CBC (count week) record on latter date.  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see BBC, CBC, FBC, SBC, SRS, and WBPS. Photo [adult in stalking mode]: 23 April 2012, SJS.

Black-crowned Night-Heron

Nycticorax nycticorax

            Status: A very uncommon spring, summer, and fall visitor.  High Count: 2 (22 July and 26 August1990, SJS [first date] and SJS, BHS [second date]).  Extreme Dates: 9 April 1990/2008 (SJS, BHS/SJS, EKL, Hope High, Carol Eagle, Don Eagle)–27 November 1989 (SJS, BHS).   Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see FBC.  The Black-crowned Night-Heron is not known to breed in the county, but several observations along Martin Creek during late spring and early fall in early 2000s (and at least one report from early 1990s) suggest breeding may have been occurring for two decades or more in that area.

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron

Nycticorax violaceus

            Status: A very uncommon summer resident.  Breeding Evidence: Young in nest (June 1991, Roy C. Phillips).  High Count:  8 (June 1991, Roy C. Phillips; includes young in or near nests).  Extreme Dates: 26 March 2003 (SJS)–9 October 2004/2010 (Van Harris, CDW photo [immature], MJH/Evan Tanner [juvenile]).  Remarks: Observed at BUF; see FBC, SBC, and SRS.  One or two pairs of Yellow-crowned Night-Herons nested in Algood during the late 1980s and early 1990s (Roy C. Phillips fide WHG).  Since 1987 adults and occasional immatures have been present at BUF every year, but not until 13 April 2002 was breeding evidence found; on that date an adult was seen carrying nest material (WAW) and on 21 & 27 April and 4 & 11 May 2002 an adult was observed incubating (SJS photo, WAW et al.). Photo [adult]: 26 June 2002, SJS.

White Ibis

Eudocimus albus

            Status: A rare summer visitor.  All Records: 10 July 1990 (1—immature flying) east of CKV near the intersection of Rts. 70 and 111 (SJS).

Ibis sp. 

Plegadis sp.

            Status: A rare spring and fall visitor.  All Records: 17 May 2004 (1—flying) along I-40 at the easternmost bridge over the Caney Fork River (K. Dean Edwards; Casteel 2004c); 7 October 2008 (1—immature) CCP (GKE, NSL).

Black Vulture

Coragyps atratus

            Status: An fairly common and perhaps increasing permanent resident.  Breeding Evidence: None except presence of birds.  High Count: 391 (16 December 2006, CBC).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, SRS, and WRS. A winter roost sometimes numbering 300+ birds developed at City Lake during the late 1990s and 2000s.

Turkey Vulture

Cathartes aura  

            Status: A fairly common permanent resident.  Breeding Evidence: None except presence of birds.  High Count: 289 (20 December 2003, CBC).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see BBC, CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, SRS, WBPS, and WRS.  Photo [adult soaring]: 18 March 2007, Barry Stein; photo [adult scavenging road-killed rabbit]: 14 April 2012, WAW.

Osprey

Pandion haliaetus

            Status: An uncommon migrant.  High Count: 5 (18 September 2004, FBC/16 September 2006, FBC).  Extreme Dates: 10 March 1994 (SJS, BHS)–23 May 1994 (SJS, GKE, TAE); 3 September 1992/1993 (SJS/SJS)–14 November 2011 (BHS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see FBC and SBC.

Mississippi Kite

Ictinia mississippiensis

            Status: A rare spring visitor.  All Records: 12 May 2001 (1—subadult) end of Carr’s Chapel Rd. on Center Hill Lake (SJS).  Remarks: See SBC.

Bald Eagle

Haliaeetus leucocephalus

            Status: A very uncommon winter and spring visitor.  All Records:  28 December 1966 (1) site unspecified (CBC); 18 January 1991 (1—adult) R96 (SJS), see WRS; 28 January 1992 (1—adult) TTU (GSK); 15 May 1992 (1—immature) CCP (SJS); 8 May 1993 (1—immature) Martin Creek arm of Cordell Hull Reservoir on R96 (CJB, SJS); 30 December 1993 (1—adult) BAH (RWS); 22 December 1997 (1—immature) CLN (SJS, BHS); 19 January 2000 (1—immature) CCP (SJS, ND); 12 May 2012 (1 adult) Happy Hollow Boat Ramp, Caney Fork River, (SJS, SEP), a SBC record.Remarks: Observed at CCP and CLN; see CBC, SBC, and WRS. The 1966 CBC record lacks the name(s) of the observer(s).

Northern Harrier

Circus cyaneus  

            Status: a winter resident, uncommon during spring and fall, and very uncommon during winter.  High Count: 7 (18 December 2010, CBC).  Extreme Dates: 17 August 2008 (SJS); next earliest: 15 September 2007 (BHS, Rebecca Schapansky)–21 May 1988 (JWW).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, and WRS.

Sharp-shinned Hawk

Accipiter striatus

            Status: A permanent resident, uncommon during fall, winter, and spring, and rare during summer.  Breeding Evidence: Adult near nest (9 May 1996, BHS); two fledged juveniles (24 July 1997, SJS, GKE).  High Count: 5 (25 September 1987, SJS and BHS/18 December 2004, CBC/17 December 2011, CBC). Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see BBC, CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, SRS, WBPS, and WRS.  Both records of breeding evidence took  place in Icy Cove. Photo [dorsal view of adult]: 5 December 2011, WAW.

Cooper's Hawk

Accipiter cooperii  

            Status: an uncommon and increasing permanent resident.  Breeding Evidence: Nest with four young (July 1996, SJS); nest with three young (June 1998, WAW, CEW).  High Count: 8 (18 December 2004, CBC).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see BBC, CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, SRS, WBPS, and WRS. The 1996 nest noted above was in CCP; a Great Horned Owl used the same nest in 1998.  The 1998 nest noted above was in woods near West Oak Dr.; this nest was reused (unsuccessfully) in 1999.

Red-shouldered Hawk

Buteo lineatus  

            Status: An uncommon permanent resident.  Breeding Evidence: Young in nest (4 June 1989, SJS, Jez Simms).  High Count: 26 (17 December 2011, CBC).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see BBC, CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, SRS, WBPS, and WRS.

Broad-winged Hawk

Buteo platypterus

            Status: An uncommon summer resident.  Breeding Evidence: Adult at nest (June 1992, BHS).  High Count: 290 (18 September 1993, BHS).  Extreme Dates: 25 March 1989 (BHS)–18 October 1990 (BHS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see BBC, FBC, SBC, and SRS.

Red-tailed Hawk

Buteo jamaicensis

            Status: A permanent resident, fairly common during fall, winter, and spring, and uncommon during summer.  Breeding Evidence: Juvenile begging near nest (29 June 1991, SJS).  High Count: 46 (19 December 1994, CBC).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see BBC, CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBR, SRS, WBPS, and WRS.  Nn immature light morph "Eastern" Red-tail (B. j. krideri) was noted 24 November 1990; dark morph "Western" Red-tails (probably B. j. calurus) were observed 27 October 1990 and 18 December 1997; an immature "Harlan’s" Red-tail (B. j. harlani) was photographed near Dry Valley Rd. 9 April 1989 (SJS) and perhaps the same bird, as an adult dark morph, was present in that vicinity during most winters thereafter for a decade, last being observed during early 1999 (Stedman 1999b). More Red-tails apparently breed at lower elevations in the county than at higher elevations (SRS), while the breeding population is roughly half the size of the wintering one (SRS, WRS).

Rough-legged Hawk

Buteo lagopus

            Status: A rare winter visitor.  All Records: 26 December 1973 (1) c. 11 km west of CKV on I-40 (James Holt [Parmer 1973]); 15 December 1991 (1—immature) near SHF (SJS, WAW); 17 February 2001 (1) R62 ponds (BHS).  Remarks: See CBC.  A Rough-leg in White County 18 & 20 December 1991 may have been the same bird noted in the second record above.

Golden Eagle

Aquila chrysaetos  

            Status: A rare winter visitor.  All Records: 8 November 1995 (1—immature) near intersection of Rt. 70 and Dry Valley Rd. (BHS); 20 February 2000 (1—adult) Algood (WB).  Remarks: The eagle on display above the information desk in the University Center at Tennessee Technological University is an immature Bald Eagle, not this species, which is the mascot of TTU.

Virginia Rail

Rallus limicola

            Status: A rare migrant.  All Records: 6 September 2005 (1—immature found dead in parking lot) near Cookeville Regional Medical Center, CKV (ILC [road-killed specimen]; SJS photo [of specimen]).  Remarks: The specimen noted above is now housed in the bird collection of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.  Alsop (undated [1980]) reported this rail's presence in Putnam County, but, when the author was queried about the record, he could provide no details. Although included in the first edition (1993) of the present work, this record is undoubtedly invalid, the result of a mapping error. Instead of showing Virginia Rail as occurring between August and April in Putnam County, Alsop (undated [1980]) should have shown it as occurring between August and April in Cumberland County where a bona fide record exists (Bierly 1979a).

Sora

Porzana carolina

            Status: A very uncommon migrant.  Extreme Dates: 13 April 1966 (BIO)–27 May 1989 (SJS); 23 September 1990 (SJS)–10 October 1992 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at CCP and CLN; see SBC

Purple Gallinule

Porphyrio martinicus

            Status: A rare spring visitor.  All Records: 18 & 20 May 1990 (1 adult) wet-weather pond in southeast corner of the intersection of Rts. 70 and 111 (SJS).

Common Gallinule

Gallinula galeata

            Status: A rare spring visitor.  All Records: 6 May 1976 (1 adult) CLN (WJJ et al.); spring 1977 (1 specimen [BIO]) near CKV (fide WJJ).  Remarks: Observed at CLN.

American Coot

Fulica americana

            Status: A winter resident, very uncommon (and sometimes absent) during winter but uncommon during spring and fall.  High Count: 217 (20 December 2008, CBC).  Extreme Dates: 11 September 2007 (BHS)–22 May 1988 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, GBBC, SBC, and WRS. Photo [adult swimming]: 9 December 2011, SJS.

Sandhill Crane

Grus canadensis

            Status: A fairly common and increasing migrant, sometimes abundant for a few days during the peak of migration.  High Count: 3600+ (23 February 2007 John Ramsey fide Michele Ramsey et al.; also 3525 (15 February 2000, WHG, Robbie C. Hassler, WB).  Extreme Dates: 13 October 2004 (MR)–10 May 1989 (BHS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC and GBBC. Sandhill Cranes are noisy migrants, often heard before seen. Seldom noted on the ground, they are most frequently observed during late February and mid- to late November, but there is almost no period between mid-October and late March when migrant cranes have not been observed.  Indeed, during January cranes have been seen flying north before other cranes have been seen flying south, a puzzling circumstance; during December 2006 northbound cranes were noted (GKE et al.).

Whooping Crane

Grus americana

            Status: A rare migrant resulting from reintroduction of a migratory flock in eastern North America.  All Records: 17 January 2013 (1 adult) City Lake (SJS).  Remarks: Observed migrating northwest with a flock of Sandhill Cranes. Some earlier reports of this species in the county were made, but none was adequately documented.

Black-bellied Plover

Pluvialis squatarola

            Status: A rare fall migrant.  All Records: 10 September 2000 (1—alternate plumage) TTU (SJS et al.); and 23–24 October 2009 (1—basic plumage) Lexus Pond on Clemmons Rd. (SJS, BHS, WAW photo [24 October 2009]). Remarks: Amy S. Johnson recalled a sighting of this species made during the early 1980s, possibly during late summer or early fall, on Dry Valley Rd. (fide BHS).

American Golden-Plover

Pluvialis dominica

            Status: A rare spring migrant.  All Records: 6 April 2006 (7—basic plumage changing to alternate) pond at intersection of Lexus Place and Clemmons Rd. (SJS, NSL photo).

Semipalmated Plover

Charadrius semipalmatus

            Status: A migrant, very uncommon during spring and rare during fall.  High Count: 21 (11 May 2013, SBC [EKL, MJH, John Bathelme]).  Extreme Dates: 21 April 1993 (SJS, CJB)–24 May 1993 (SJS); 7 September 1999 (SJS et al.).  Remarks: Observed at BUF and CCP; see SBC.   Photo: 15 May 1990, SJS.

Killdeer

Charadrius vociferus

            Status: A common permanent resident.  Breeding Evidence: Downy young with adults (25 May 1988, BHS).  High Count: 164 (19 September 2009, FBC).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, SRS, and WRS. Photo: Cane Creek Park, SJS.

Spotted Sandpiper

Actitis macularius

            Status: A fairly common migrant.  High Count: 27 (5 May 1991, SJS and BHS).  Extreme Dates: 6 April 2006 (SJS)–11 June 1988 (SJS); 1 July 1990 (SJS)–19 December 1998 (SJS et al.; Stedman 1999b).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, FBC, and SBC. Usually hard to find after early October during fall.

Solitary Sandpiper

Tringa solitaria

            Status: A fairly common migrant.  High Count: 16 (21 April 1989, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 28 March 1990 (SJS)–27 May 1994 (SJS); 19 July 1988 (SJS)–4 November 1990 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see SBC.

Greater Yellowlegs

Tringa melanoleuca  

            Status: An uncommon migrant.  High Count: 13 (27 April 1988, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 8 March 1988 (SJS)–22 May 1988 (SJS); 30 July 1988 (SJS)–22 November 1991 (BHS).  Out of Season Records: 18 December 1976 (1) site unspecified (CBC).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC and SBC. Photo: 2 November 2002, SJS.

Willet

Tringa semipalmata

            Status: A rare spring visitor.  All Records: 24 April 1992 (5) CLN (BHS, SJS photo, CJB, WAW, CEW).  Remarks: Observed at CLN.

Lesser Yellowlegs

Tringa flavipes  

            Status: An uncommon migrant.  High Count: 9 (26 April 1993, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 2 April 1990 (SJS)–17 May 1988 (SJS); 27 July 2003 (SJS)–19 October 1987 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF and CCP; see FBC and SBC.  Note: next earliest early fall arrival date is 9 September 1987 (SJS).

Stilt Sandpiper

Calidris himantopus

          Status: A rare fall visitor.  All Records: 3 August 1987 (1) Pond on Green Valley Farm on south side of I-40 between mile markers 283 and 284 (SJS).

Dunlin

Calidris alpina  

           Status: A rare spring and very uncommon fall migrant.  High Count: 16 (1 November 2002, SJS; next highest 31 November 1992, SJS, BHS; and 23 October 2009, SJS, BHS). Extreme Dates: 5 May 2003 (SJS)7 May 2003 (SJS, DLC); 19 October 1991 (SJS)4 November 1988 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF and CCP

Least Sandpiper

Calidris minutilla  

            Status: An uncommon migrant.  High Count: 25 (5 May 1992, SJS and BHS).  Extreme Dates: 11 April 1992 (SJS)–20 May 1992 (SJS); 2 July 1990 (SJS)–20 September 1990 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see SBC.

White-rumped Sandpiper

Calidris fuscicollis

            Status: A rare spring migrant.  All Records: 17–18 May 1990 (2) CCP (SJS); 4–14 May 1994 (1) CCP (SJS et al.); 5&8 May 1995 (2) CCP (SJS); 12 May 1995 (1) Hickey Ridge Rd. (SJS); 7 May 2003 (1/1) TTU/Hickey Ridge Rd. (SJS, GKE, WAW/SJS, DLC).  Remarks: Observed at CCP; see SBC.

Pectoral Sandpiper

Calidris melanotos  

            Status: An uncommon migrant.  High Count: 18 (27 April 1989, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 21 March 1988 (SJS)–11 May 1989 (SJS); 4 August 1991 (SJS)–21 October 1987 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF and CCP; see SBC.

Semipalmated Sandpiper

Calidris pusilla

            Status: A migrant, very uncommon in spring and rare in fall.  High Count: 7 (11 May 2013, EKL).  Extreme Dates: 4 May 1995 (SJS)24 May 1993 (SJS); 21 September 2002 (BHS)4 October 1994 (SJS). Remarks: Observed at BUF and CCP; see FBC and SBC.

Western Sandpiper

Calidris mauri  

            Status: A rare migrant.  All Records: 18 May 1991 (1) CCP (SJS); 24 May 1993 (1) CCP (SJS); 21 May 1994 (1) CCP (SJS); 19 August 1994 (1) CCP (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at CCP.

Short-billed Dowitcher

Limnodromus griseus

            Status: A rare spring visitor.  All Records: 10 May 1988 (1) CCP (SJS, photo); 14 May 2005 (1 [plus 2 dowitcher sp.]) upper end of Martin Creek arm of Cordell Hull Reservoir (NSL, SJS, CDW photo, JuF).  Remarks: Observed at CCP; see SBC. Note: two dowitcher sp. were noted 7 May 2003 on Hickey Ridge Rd. (SJS, DLC); one of the Martin Creek dowitchers uttered the "tu-tu-tu" call.

Long-billed Dowitcher

Limnodromus scolopaceus

            Status: A rare fall visitor.  All Records: 2629 October 2015 (2) Lexus Pond (Chris Agee [first date], John and Theresa O'Barr photos [last date]). Note: eBird records.

Wilson’s Snipe

Gallinago delicata

           Status: An uncommon winter resident.  High Count: 30 (14 February 2004, BHS and SJS).  Extreme Dates: 10 August 1987 (SJS, BHS)–16 May 1988 (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, GBBC, SBC, and WBPS. Photo: 27 February 2004, SJS.

American Woodcock

Scolopax minor

            Status: A permanent resident, very uncommon during spring, summer, and fall, and becoming uncommon during winter.  Breeding Evidence: Nest (spring/summer 1982, RWS [Simmers 1983]); nest with four eggs (26 March–1 April 1994, MAS, SJS).  High Count: 6 (24 April 1976, SBC/19 February 2005, SJS).  Remarks: Observed at CCP and CLN; see BBC, CBC, FBC, GBBC, SBC, SRS, and WBPS.

Wilson's Phalarope

Phalaropus tricolor

            Status: A rare fall visitor.  All Records: 5 November 1991 (1) CLN (BHS).  Remarks: Observed at CLN.

Black-legged Kittiwake

Rissa tridactyla

            Status: A rare fall visitor.  All Records: 10 October 1981 (1 immature) TTU (GSK, Lucius Dubose et al.).  Remarks: This gull landed in the middle of Tucker Stadium on the Tennessee Technological University campus, in front of 8000 people during half-time of a night football game; briefly mentioned in the Cookeville Herald-Citizen October 10 [sic; actually 11], 1981, as the "evil E-gull," it established the third Tennessee record for this species; an article about the bird, including a photograph (TTU Photographic Services; Appendix H) in which the bird is identifiable, ran in the Herald-Citizen October 15, 1981 (pp. 7, 12).

Bonaparte's Gull

Chroicocephalus philadelphia  

            Status: A very uncommon migrant.  High Count: 17 (23 March 1990, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 29 October 2000 (SJS)–7 May 1996 (TAE).  Remarks: Observed at CCP and CLN; see CBC and WRS.

Ring-billed Gull

Larus delawarensis  

            Status: An uncommon fall, winter, and spring visitor.  High Count: 70 (8 December 1994, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 19 September 2009 (BHS)–8 May 2003 (SJS photo).  Remarks: Observed at BUF, CCP, and CLN; see CBC, FBC, GBBC, and WRS.

Herring Gull

Larus argentatus

           Status: A very uncommon winter and spring visitor.  All Records: 29 December 1958 (4) site unspecified (CBC); 6 April 1988 (1) CCP (SJS); 25 February 1990 (1) CLN (BHS); 22 March 1991 (1) CLN (BHS, SJS); 6–7 December 1992 (1—adult) CCP (SJS, DaH); 24 November 2000 (6) CCP (SJS); 3 December 2005 (2—adults) CCP (SJS).  Remarks: Observed at CCP and CLN; see CBC.

Sooty Tern

Onychoprion fuscatus

            Status: Rare hurricane-borne vagrant. All Records: 12 July 2005 (1—road-killed individual) Rt. 96 c. 5 km north of I-40 (Stephen J. Stedman photo [of specimen] and Barbara H. Stedman).  Remarks: This record was correlated with, and undoubtedly caused by, the northward passage of remnants of Hurricane Dennis 11–13 July 2005; the specimen was deposited in the bird collection of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and retains the following accession number (UTCB # 146).

Caspian Tern

Hydroprogne caspia

            Status: A very uncommon migrant.  All Records: 17 April 1990 (1) CCP (SJS); 22 September 1990 (1) CCP (SJS, DaH, GSK, ASJ, WHG, Carrell A. Warren); 1 September 1992 (1) BUF (SJS); 2 May 1995 (1) CCP (SJS); 23 August 1995 (2) CCP (SJS); 12 September 2001 (1) CCP (SJS); 18 August 2002 (3) CCP (SJS); 18 April 2007 (3) CCP (SJS, LC, GKE, NSL, JCF); 16 May 2008 (2) CCP (EKL, Hope High); 20 April 2011 (2) CCP (GKE, JCF).  Remarks: Observed at BUF and CCP.

Black Tern

Chlidonias niger  

            Status: A rare fall migrant.  All Records: 6 September 1992 (1) CCP (SJS, MAS, AMS); 24 September 1994 (1) CCP (SJS et al.); 14 August 1998 (1) CCP (SJS); 8 September 2004 (2) CCP (SJS, JCF), following Hurricane Frances.  Remarks: Observed at CCP.

Forster's Tern

Sterna forsteri  

            Status: A very uncommon migrant.  High Count: 17 (3 May 1999, SJS).  Extreme Dates: 9 April 2003 (SJS, TMS)–11 May 2002 (GKE et al.); 24 July 1990 (SJS)–16 October 2009 (SJS) [next latest: 8 September 2004 (SJS, JCF)].  Remarks: Observed at CCP; see SBC.

 

Literature Cited

 

Clickable Contents  

            Front Dust Jacket
            Back Dust Jacket
            Title Page
            Copyright Page
            Dedication
            Preface to the Second Edition
            List of Figures
            List of Tables
            Introduction
            Explication of the Species Accounts
            Gazetteer
            List of Observers
            Species Accounts—Geese through Terns
            Species Accounts—Pigeon through Weaver Finch
            Appendices

 

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