The list includes all birds known to have occurred at the E.S. George Reserve, Livingston County, Michigan. It includes my observations and those of other biologists from the University of Michigan who have lived at the George Reserve, including unpublished lists of R. E. Mumford, P. DeBenedictis, and K. L. Fiala. It cites published studies that I know about. To date, 197 species of birds have been recorded and 112 have bred on the Reserve. A few observations within 1 km of the Reserve (neighboring farms, Pinckney State Recreation Area) are included.
Names of species and families are from “The AOU Check-List of North American Birds,” Sixth Edition, 1983. Place names (Big Swamp, Southwest Marsh) on the George Reserve are in Sutton 1949. The 100-m grids are based on an overlay of aerial photographs of the reserve.
|*– breeding record||c– common or abundant|
|P– permanent resident||f– fairly common|
|S– summer resident||u– uncommon|
|T– transient, in migration||r– rare (occasional, not seen on most days in season)|
|V– vagrant, outside migration route||x– accidental (few records)|
|W– winter resident or visitor||e– extirpated (or formerly occurred, when used with a season code)|
|i– irregular (cyclic or irruptive)|
Family Podicipedidae, Grebes
___*Pied-billed Grebe, cS, rW
Family Ardeidae, Herons and Bitterns
____Great Blue Heron, cS. Birds feeding at East Pond on the Reserve may nest in the large colony by the Huron River north of Dexter.
____Great Egret, uS, seen at Southwest Marsh
____Snowy Egret, rS, seen at Southwest Marsh in 1981
___*Green-backed Heron, cS, nesting in oak woods and dense shrubs around big swamp and southwest marsh, and fishtail marsh.
____Black-crowned Night-heron, rS
___*Least Bittern, rS
____American Bittern, uS
Family Anatidae, Swans, Geese and Ducks
___*Canada Goose, cS, cT, fW
___*Wood Duck, fS
____Green-winged Teal, uT
___*American Black Duck, uS
____Northern Pintail, uT
___*Blue-winged Teal, cT, uS
____Ring-necked Duck, cT
____Lesser Scaup, uT
____Common Goldeneye, uT
____Hooded Merganser, uT
Family Cathartidae, American Vultures
___*Turkey Vulture, fS, nests in hollow trees
Family Accipitridae, Kites, Eagles, and Hawks
___*Northern Harrier, uT, rS. Nested in 1940s (Hamerstrom and Hamerstrom 1951), also in 1955 (nestlings banded–REM) and 1957 (REM), on Southwest Marsh.
___*Sharp-shinned Hawk, uS, cT, rW
___*Cooper’s Hawk, uS, cT, fW (Hamerstrom and Hamerstrom 1951), bred 1978-1990 in pines near North Gate
____Northern Goshawk, rW
____Red-shouldered Hawk, uT
___*Broad-winged Hawk, fS, cT
___*Red-tailed Hawk, cS, fW. (Hamerstrom and Hamerstrom 1951), two pairs bred on Reserve in most years in 1980s, nests near Lost Lake and Cassandra Bog.
Family Falconidae, and Falcons
___*American Kestrel, cS. A pair regularly nests on electric pylons in grids Y33 and Y34, on old railroad bed north of ESGR, from 1982 through 1994, none seen 1995
Family Phasianidae, Partridges, Grouse, Turkeys and Quail
___*Ring-necked Pheasant, fP, “Szechuan” pheasants introduced in late 1980s
___*Ruffed Grouse, fP, oak woodlands
___*Wild Turkey, uP, introduced in Pinckney State Recreation Area in middle 1980s, became established with family groups seen in Reserve in 1989, 1990. An earlier introduction of 4 birds was unsuccessful.
___*Northern Bobwhite, uP
Family Rallidae, Rails, Gallinules, and Coots
___*Virginia Rail, uS, nested in Southwest Marsh
___*Sora, fS, nested in Southwest Marsh
___*Common Moorhen, fS, nested in 1978 in Southwest Marsh
___*American Coot, cS
Family Gruidae, Cranes
___*Sandhill Crane, uS, fT. Nested in Southwest Marsh in 1980s, in two years the nesting pair produced two fledglings.
Family Charadriidae, Plovers and Lapwings
___*Killdeer, cS, cT
Family Scolopacidae, Sandpipers, Phalaropes and Allies
____Greater Yellowlegs, fT
____Lesser Yellowlegs, cT
____Solitary Sandpiper, fT
___*Spotted Sandpiper, cT, cS, nest around experimental ponds (built in 1989) in north part of Reserve
____Upland Sandpiper, rT
___*Common Snipe, fS, cT
___*American Woodcock, cS
Family Laridae, Skuas, Gulls, Terns and Skimmers
____Ring-billed Gull, uT
____Herring Gull, uT
___*Black Tern, rS, fT formerly bred in area, none seen since 1976.
Family Columbidae, Pigeons and Doves
___*Rock Dove, cP
___*Mourning Dove, cS, fW
Family Cuculidae, Cuckoos
___*Black-billed Cuckoo, uS
___*Yellow-billed Cuckoo, uS
Family Strigidae, Typical Owls
___*Eastern Screech-Owl, fP
___*Great Horned Owl, cP
___*Barred Owl, fP
___*Long-eared Owl, uW, rS
____Northern Saw-whet Owl, fT, uS, uW. (Mumford & Zusi 1958) calling in May 1990
Family Caprimulgidae, Goatsuckers
___*Common Nighthawk, cS, cT.
___*Whip-poor-will, cS. (Sutton 1941)
Family Apodidae, Swifts
___*Chimney Swift, cS
Family Trochilidae, Hummingbirds
___*Ruby-throated Hummingbird, fS
Order Coraciiformes, Kingfishers and Allies
Family Alcedinidae, Kingfishers
___*Belted Kingfisher, fS, uW
Family Picidae, Woodpeckers
___*Red-headed Woodpecker, fS, uW
___*Red-bellied Woodpecker, fP, five pairs on Reserve in 1978 and 1979
____Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, fT
___*Downy Woodpecker, cP
___*Hairy Woodpecker, fP
___*Northern Flicker, cS, rW
Family Tyrannidae, Tyrant Flycatchers
____Olive-sided Flycatcher, fT
___*Eastern Wood-Pewee, cS, parasitized by cowbirds
____Yellow-bellied Flycatcher, uT
___*Acadian Flycatcher, cS, larger woods, mainly oaks, increasing in numbers with growth of woods (Mumford 1964), parasitized by cowbirds
___*Alder Flycatcher, fS, breeds in swamps along north railway
___*Willow Flycatcher, fS, breeds in swamps, also in uplands, parasitized by cowbirds
___*Least Flycatcher, cS, cT. (Mumford 1962)
___*Eastern Phoebe, fS, fT, parasitized by cowbirds
___*Great Crested Flycatcher, cS
___*Eastern Kingbird, cS
Family Alaudidae, Larks
___*Horned Lark, cS, uW breeds on open land on farms, not on the Reserve
Family Hirundinidae, Swallows
___*Purple Martin, fS
___*Tree Swallow, cS, cT, nests in dead trees, many in nestboxes established in 1988
___*Northern Rough-winged Swallow, fS, cT
___*Bank Swallow, cS, cT
___*Barn Swallow, cS, cT
Family Corvidae, Jays, Magpies and Crows
___*Blue Jay, cP, cT. Vocal behavior was studied by Cohen (1977).
___*American Crow, cS, fW
Family Paridae, Titmice
___*Black-capped Chickadee, cP, uT
___*Tufted Titmouse, fP
Family Sittidae, Nuthatches
____ Red-breasted Nuthatch, icW
___*White-breasted Nuthatch, cP
Family Certhiidae, Creepers
____Brown Creeper, fT, uW
Family Troglodytidae, Wrens
____Bewick’s Wren, rT, singing on 15 May 1955 and 24 April 1957 (REM)
___*House Wren, cS
____Winter Wren, uT
____Sedge Wren, uS, in wet grass around East Pond in 1981 and 1982
____Marsh Wren, uS
Family Muscicapidae, Muscicapids
Subfamily Sylviinae, Old World Warblers, Kinglets and Gnatcatchers
____Golden-crowned Kinglet, uW, uT
____Ruby-crowned Kinglet, cT
___*Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, cS, cT, nests in walnuts, oaks, from April to July
Subfamily Turdinae, Thrushes
___*Eastern Bluebird, fS, rW
___*Veery, fS, fT
____Gray-cheeked Thrush, fT
____Swainson’s Thrush, fS, cT
____Hermit Thrush, fS, cT, rW
___*Wood Thrush, cS
___*American Robin, cS, cT, uW
Family Mimidae, Mockingbirds, Thrashers and Allies
____*Gray Catbird, cS
_____Northern Mockingbird, uT
____*Brown Thrasher, fS
Family Bombycillidae, Waxwings
____Bohemian Waxwing, iuW
___*Cedar Waxwing, cS, cT, ifW
Family Sturnidae, Starlings
___*European Starling, cP, cT
Family Vireonidae, Vireos
___*White-eyed Vireo, luS, uV, ESGR, fledglings 1990 in Pinckney State Recreation Area
____Solitary Vireo fT
___*Yellow-throated Vireo, cS. parasitized by cowbirds (Sutton 1949)
___*Warbling Vireo, fS. (Sutton 1949)
____Philadelphia Vireo, uT
___*Red-eyed Vireo, cS, parasitized by cowbirds. (Sutton 1949)
Family Emberizidae, Emberizids
Subfamily Parulinae, Wood-Warblers
___*Blue-winged Warbler, fS, ESGR, parasitized by cowbird
___*Golden-winged Warbler, cT, fS, hybridizes with Blue-winged Warbler, two hybrid male “Brewster’s” warblers color-banded, each bred for four years, one with a female Blue-winged Warbler, the other with a female Golden-winged Warbler and fledged 6 young (Payne, in Michigan Breeding Bird Atlas 1991).
____Tennessee Warbler, cT
____Orange-crowned Warbler, uT
____Nashville Warbler, cT
____Northern Parula, rT
___*Yellow Warbler, cS, cT, parasitized by cowbirds
___*Chestnut-sided Warbler, cT, fS, parasitized by cowbirds
____Magnolia Warbler, cT
____Cape May Warbler, fT
____Black-throated Blue Warbler, uT
____Yellow-rumped Warbler, cT, rW
____Black-throated Green Warbler, cT
____Blackburnian Warbler, cT
____Yellow-throated Warbler, rV. Mumford 1958.
____Pine Warbler, uT
___*Prairie Warbler, uT, lrS, bred in 1980 (Groschupf & Dansereau 1980)
____Palm Warbler, cT
____Bay-breasted Warbler, cT
____Blackpoll Warbler, cT
___*Cerulean Warbler, uT, cS, ESGR, more numerous in recent years as forest grows
____Black-and-white Warbler, cT
____American Redstart, cT
____Prothonotary Warbler, rT, one sang well into summer in 1974 along edge of Southwest Marsh
____Worm-eating Warbler, rS, rV, one molting, netted 800 m south of Reserve in Pinckney State Recreation Area, 1984, S. M. Kielb
___*Ovenbird, cS, cT, parasitized by cowbirds
____Northern Waterthrush, fT
____Kentucky Warbler, rT, one singing, June 1977
____Connecticut Warbler, uT
____Mourning Warbler, fT
___*Common Yellowthroat, cS, cT, parasitized by cowbird
____Hooded Warbler, uT, uS
____Wilson’s Warbler, fT
____Canada Warbler, fT
___*Yellow-breasted Chat, uT, uS, nests in shrubby marsh along north railway on ESGR
Subfamily Thraupinae, Tanagers
____*Scarlet Tanager, cS, ESGR, parasitized by cowbirds
Subfamily Cardinalinae, Cardinals, Grosbeaks and Allies
____*Northern Cardinal, cP. parasitized by cowbirds. (Sutton 1935,1959)
____*Rose-breasted Grosbeak, cS. Sutton 1959.
____*Indigo Bunting, cS. parasitized by cowbirds. (Sutton 1935, 1959, Thompson 1969, 1970, 1972, Thompson and Rice 1972, Payne et al. 1981, 1987, 1988, Payne 1989, 1991, 1992, 1996, Payne and Westneat 1988, Payne and Payne 1989, 1990, 1993a,b, 1996)
Subfamily Emberizinae, New World Sparrows
____*Eastern Towhee, cS. Nests on ground, often at base of junipers. Occasionally parasitized by cowbirds. (Sutton 1935, 1959)
_____Bachman’s Sparrow, rV
_____American Tree Sparrow, cT, cW
____*Chipping Sparrow, cS, xW, parasitized by cowbirds. (Sutton 1935, 1937, 1960, Dawson and Evans 1957, Evans 1964)
____*Field Sparrow, cS, rW. (Sutton 1935, 1960, Dawson and Evans 1957, Evans 1964, 1978), parasitized by cowbirds
____*Vesper Sparrow, fS, rW, (Sutton 1935, 1941, 1960, Dawson and Allen 1960, Dawson and Evans 1960, Evans 1964)
____*Lark Sparrow, eS. (Sutton 1960; habitat photos), formerly bred in sandy blowout, last seen about 1960 (RBP).
____*Savannah Sparrow, uS, cT. (Sutton 1935), breeds in alfalfa fields north of Reserve.
____*Grasshopper Sparrow, uS, not seen in summer since 1984 (Sutton 1935, 1936, 1959)
____*Henslow’s Sparrow, uS, formerly bred nearby (Hyde 1939, Sutton 1935, 1959)
_____Le Conte’s Sparrow, rT, one seen spring 1978 on marsh grid M3
_____Fox Sparrow, fT, uW
____*Song Sparrow, cS, uW. (Sutton 1935, 1960). parasitized by cowbirds
_____Lincoln’s Sparrow, uT
____*Swamp Sparrow, cS, cT, uW. (Sutton 1960). parasitized by cowbirds
_____White-throated Sparrow, cT, uW
_____White-crowned Sparrow, uT
_____Dark-eyed Junco, cW
Subfamily Icterinae, Blackbirds
___*Bobolink, fS, nests in alfalfa fields north of ESGR
___*Red-winged Blackbird, cS. (Laux 1970, Fiala 1979, 1981a,b,c, Fiala and Congdon 1983, Whittingham 1988)
___*Eastern Meadowlark, uS
____Western Meadowlark, uT
____Rusty Blackbird, cT
___*Common Grackle, cS, cT, uW
___*Brown-headed Cowbird, cS, cT. (Sutton 1959, 1960, Mumford 1959, 1964, Payne 1989). Local host species: willow flycatcher, eastern phoebe, veery, red-eyed vireo, yellow-throated vireo, scarlet tanager, blue-winged warbler, yellow warbler, chestnut-sided warbler, common yellowthroat, ovenbird, northern cardinal, indigo bunting, eastern towhee, field sparrow, chipping sparrow, song sparrow, swamp sparrow
____Orchard Oriole, rS
___*Baltimore Oriole, cS
Family Fringillidae, Finches
Subfamily Carduelinae, Cardueline Finches
_____Purple Finch, cT, ifW
____*House Finch, cP, none seen on ESGR, established in Pinckney in 1989, when heard at corner of M36 and Kelly Road
_____Pine Grosbeak, uW
_____Red Crossbill, ifW
_____Common Redpoll, icW
_____Pine Siskin, cT, ifW
____*American Goldfinch, cS, cT, ifW. (Sutton 1959).
_____Evening Grosbeak, icW
Family Passeridae, Old World Sparrows
____*House Sparrow, cP
Cohen, S. M. 1977. Blue Jay vocal behavior. PhD Dissertation, University of Michigan.
Dawson, W. R. & J. M. Allen. 1960. Thyroid activity in nestling Vesper Sparrows. Condor 62:403-405.
Dawson, W. R. & F. C. Evans. 1957. Relation of growth and development to temperature regulation in nestling Field and Chipping Sparrows. Physiol. Zool. 30:315-327.
Dawson, W. R. & F. C. Evans. 1960. Relation of growth and development to temperature regulation in nestling Vesper Sparrows. Condor 62:329-340.
Evans, E. W. 1978. Nesting responses of Field Sparrows (Spizella pusilla) to plant succession on a Michigan old field. Condor 80:34-40.
Evans, F. C. 1964. The food of vesper, field and chipping sparrows nesting in an abandoned field in southeastern Michigan. Am. Midl. Nat. 72:57-76.
Fiala, K. L. 1979. Natural selection and the sex ratio in the Red-winged Blackbird. PhD dissertation, University of Michigan.
Fiala, K. L. 1981a. Sex ratio constancy in the Red-winged Blackbird. Evolution 35:898-910.
Fiala, K. L. 1981b. Reproductive cost and the sex ratio in Red-winged Blackbirds. pp. 198-214, in R. D. Alexander and D. W. Tinkle, editors. Natural Selection and Social Behavior. Chiron Press, New York.
Fiala, K. L. 1981c. Survival of a demaxillate Red-winged Blackbird. Wilson Bull. 93:563-565.
Fiala, K. L., and J. D. Congdon. 1983. Energetic consequences of sexual size dimorphism in nestling Red-winged Blackbirds. Ecology 64:642-647.
Gorchov, D. 1985. (Fruiting ecology of understory trees). PhD dissertation, University of Michigan.
Groschupf, K., and C. Dansereau. 1980. Prairie Warbler breeding record in Livingston County, Michigan. Jack-Pine Warbler 58:32.
Hamerstrom, F. N., Jr., and F. Hamerstrom. 1951. Food of young raptors on the Edwin S. George Reserve. Wilson Bull. 63:16-25.
Hyde, A. S. 1939. The life history of Henslow’s Sparrow, Passerherbulus henslowi (Audubon). Misc. Publ. Mus. Zool. Univ. Michigan 41.
Laux, L. L., Jr. 1970. Non-breeding surplus and population structure of the Red-winged Blackbird. PhD dissertation, University of Michigan.
Mumford, R. E. 1958. Yellow-throated Warbler collected in Michigan. Jack-Pine Warbler 36:177.
Mumford, R. E. 1959. Cowbird parasitizes nest containing young. Auk 76:367.
Mumford, R. E. 1962. Notes on Least Flycatcher behavior. Wilson Bull. 74:98-99.
Mumford, R. E. 1964. The breeding biology of the Acadian Flycatcher. Misc. Publ. Mus. Zool. Univ. Michigan 125.
Mumford, R. E., and R. L. Zusi. 1958. Notes on movements, territory and habitat of wintering Saw-whet Owls. Wilson Bull. 70:188-191.
Payne, R. B. 1989. Indigo Bunting, pp. 153-172. In I. Newton, ed., Lifetime Reproduction in Birds. Academic Press, London.
Payne, R. B. 1991. Natal dispersal and population structure in a migratory songbird, the Indigo Bunting. Evolution 45:49-62.
Payne, R. B. 1991. Species accounts: willow flycatcher, alder flycatcher, blue-winged warbler, golden-winged warbler, and indigo bunting. In: The Atlas of Breeding Birds of Michigan (R. Brewer, G. A. McPeek and R. J. Adams, Jr., Eds.), pp. 284-287, 384-387, 460-461. Michigan State University Press, East Lansing.
Payne, R. B. 1992. Indigo bunting. The Birds of North America, no. 4 (A. Poole, P. Stettenheim and F. Gill, Eds.), pp. 1-24. Philadelphia: Amer. Ornithol. Union.
Payne, R. B. 1996. Song traditions in indigo buntings: origin, improvisation, dispersal, and extinction in cultural evolution. in: Ecology and Evolution of Acoustic Communication in Birds (D. E. Kroodsma and E. H. Miller, Eds.), pp. 198-220. Ithaca: Cornell University Press.
Payne, R. B. and L. L. Payne. 1989. Heritability estimates and behaviour observations: extra-pair matings in Indigo Buntings. Anim. Behav. 38:457-467.
Payne, R. B. and L. L. Payne. 1990. Survival estimates of Indigo Buntings: comparison of banding recoveries and local observations. Condor 92:938-946.
Payne, R. B. and L. L. Payne. 1993. Breeding dispersal in indigo buntings: circumstances and consequences for breeding success and population structure. Condor 95: 1-24.
Payne, R. B. and L. L. Payne. 1993. Song copying and cultural transmission in indigo buntings. Anim. Behav. 46: 1045-1065.
Payne, R. B. and L. L. Payne. 1996. Demography, dispersal and the persistence of partnerships in indigo buntings. In: Partnerships in Birds: The Study of Monogamy (J. M. Black, Ed.), pp. 305-320. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Payne, R. B. and D. F. Westneat. 1988. A genetic and behavioral analysis of mate choice and song neighborhoods in Indigo Buntings. Evolution 42:935-947.
Payne, R. B., L. L. Payne, and S. M. Doehlert. 1987. Song, mate choice and the question of kin recognition in a migratory songbird. Anim. Behav. 35: 35-47.
Payne, R. B., L. L. Payne, and S. M. Doehlert. 1988. Biological and cultural success of song memes in Indigo Buntings. Ecology 69:104-117.
Payne, R. B., W. L. Thompson, K. L. Fiala, and L. L. Sweany. 1981. Local song traditions in Indigo Buntings: cultural transmission of behavior patterns across generations. Behaviour 77:199-221.
Sutton, G. M. 1935. The juvenal plumage and postjuvenal molt in several species of Michigan sparrows. Cranbrook Institute of Science Bull. 3. pp. 1-35.
Sutton, G. M. 1936. The postjuvenal molt of the Grasshopper Sparrow. Occ. Pap. Mus. Zool. Univ. Michigan 336:1-8.
Sutton, G. M. 1937. The juvenal plumage and postjuvenal molt of the Chipping Sparrow. Occ. Pap. Mus. Zoology Univ. Michigan 355:1-5.
Sutton, G. M. 1941. The plumages and molts of the young eastern Whippoorwill. Occ. Pap. Mus. Zool. Univ. Michigan 446:1-6.
Sutton, G. M. 1941. The juvenal plumage and postjuvenal molt of the Vesper Sparrow. Occ. Pap. Mus. Zool. Univ. Michigan 445:1-10.
Sutton, G. M. 1948. The juvenal plumage of the eastern Warbling Vireo (Vireo gilvus gilvus). Occ. Pap. Mus. Zool. Univ. Michigan 511:1-6.
Sutton, G. M. 1949. Studies of the nesting birds of the Edwin S. George Reserve. Part 1. the vireos. Misc. Publ. Mus. Zool. Univ. Michigan 74.
Sutton, G. M. 1959. The nesting fringillids of the Edwin S. George Reserve, southeastern Michigan. Jack-Pine Warbler 37:2-11, 37-50, 76-101, 127-151.
Sutton, G. M. 1959. The nesting fringillids of the Edwin S. George Reserve. Jack-Pine Warbler 38:2-15, 46-65, 124-139.
Thompson, W. L. 1969. Song recognition by territorial male buntings (Passerina). Anim. Behav. 17:658-663.
Thompson, W. L. 1970. Song variation in a population of Indigo Buntings. Auk 87: 58-71.
Thompson, W. L. 1972. Singing behavior of the Indigo Bunting, Passerina cyanea. Z. Tierpsychol. 31:39-59.
Thompson, W. L. and J. O. Rice. 1970. Calls of the Indigo Bunting, Passerina cyanea. Z. Tierpsychol. 27:35-46.
Whittingham, L. A. 1989. An experimental study of paternal behavior in Red-winged Blackbirds. Behav. Ecol. Sociobiol. 25:73-80.
8 May 1996, Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109
Robert B. Payne
Curator of Birds and Professor of Zoology
3019 Museum of Zoology
1109 Geddes Ave.
University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1079 USA