BIRD RECORDS FOR MERCED & STANISLAUS COUNTY
What constitutes a bird record and how does a bird species get added to the county lists?
Stanislaus Audubon Society has a committee tasked with monitoring and updating each county's official list which includes both native and introduced species. The Stanislaus Bird Records Committee members monitor reports from eBird and other resources. When some uncommon or rare bird is reported, committee members carefully review all documentation. They may accept the reported observation if it has a detailed description including how similar species were ruled out and if the observer has significant experience with the species reported. Each county list follows similar protocols that the California Bird Records Committee (CBRC) employs. The sequence of birds on each list is updated to follow the 7th edition of the A.O.U Check-List of North American Birds, and its supplements.
NEW INTRODUCED SPECIES
Following the CBRC protocols, each list does not accept species such as Mute Swan, Muscovy Duck and Nutmeg Manniqin which may be found in this area. Please read the section below How Does an Introduced Species (like Mute Swan) Get Added to the CA State List?. The counting of acceptable species in the county is complicated by eBirds inclusion of these species in the county checklists for each county.
MERCED COUNTY LIST
As of December of 2019, there are x accepted records of bird species that meet the California Bird Records Committee list of CA State Birds.
STANISLAUS COUNTY LIST
As of February of 2023, there are 330 accepted records of bird species that meet the California Bird Records Committee list of CA State Birds.
Please note that the files below follow the CBRC protocol which uses the 7th edition of the A.O.U Check-List of North American Birds taxonomy. eBird uses a slightly different format (Clements) and the lists have a slightly different sequence in the taxonomy.
How Does an Introduced Species (like Mute Swan) Get Added to the CA State List?
Have you ever wondered why some introduced species in California are not on the official state list--even though they have been here for years, have been recorded breeding, or it seems like you see them every time you walk outside your front door? Well, the California Bird Records Committee (CBRC), who maintains the official California state bird list, has just published on its website an Annotated Watch List of established, naturalized bird species in California: https://www.californiabirds.org/watchlist.html. This list provides some basic information on populations of naturalized species in the state, as well as their potential for being added to the state list, and the rationale for that potential.
VI. Bird Records
B. Records Treated
8. The Committee will also review records of breeding populations of introduced species not on the state list, but only if evidence is submitted that attempts to prove (a) the correct identification of the species and (b) the viability of the population. To be judged viable, a population must: (i) have bred in the state for fifteen (15) consecutive years, (ii) in general, be increasing or stabilized after an initial period of increase, (iii) be judged to have occupied all geographically contiguous suitable habitat to such a degree as to sustain the population and be thought unlikely to significantly diminish, and (iv) occupy an environment judged similar enough in ecological factors (e.g., climate, vegetation, food, shelter, competitors, predators) to the species’ natural habitat, or to other successful introductions, that permanent establishment seems likely.