University of California, Riverside

UCR Botanic Gardens

Bird Sightings at the Botanic Gardens

Birds of the UCR Botanic Gardens

Nearly 200 different kinds of birds have been observed at the UCR Botanic Gardens.  There are many regular birders who walk the Gardens and record their sightings.  Visit the UCR Avifauna web page for recent bird observations, also included is photographs, and other birding resources.

Please report your new bird sightings by emailing us at or drop a note in the Gatehouse lockbox at the Gardens entrance. Be sure to record your name, phone number and e-mail address when reporting a sighting.  THANK YOU!


The following list includes 195 species of birds which have been observed over the past 40 years at the University of California Riverside Botanic Gardens, and elsewhere on the campus. The list is undoubtedly incomplete both in species not listed, which should be, and in the seasonal distribution of those species which are included. The first edition of this checklist, 1974, included 130 species and was compiled by Ken Arakawa, Richard F. Green and Eugene Cardiff. The second edition, 1985, included 162 species and was compiled by Andrew C. Sanders. This edition was edited and revised by Jean T. Weiss with help from Chet McGaugh, Andrew C. Sanders, Cin-Ty Lee and Anthony Metcalf, with manuscript assistance from Bernice and Robert Tank. It is likely that the list will increase by the time a fourth edition is prepared. Please report your sightings!

The four columns to the right of the species list have a code which indicates the reported seasonal occurrence of each species. These codes are summarized below.

humming birdKey to Symbols

Fall (September - November)
Winter (December - February)
Spring (March - May)
Summer (June - August)

C - Common, likely to be seen on more than 75% of visits.
U - Uncommon, likely to be seen on 10-50% of visits.
R - Rare, likely to be seen less than 10% of visits.
S - A single record, very unlikely to be seen.
- - No records, please let us know if seen.

Pied-billed Grebe - C - -
Eared Grebe - U - -
Western Grebe - R - -
Double-crested Cormorant U C U -
Great Blue Heron C C C -
Great Egret C C C -
Snowy Egret C C C -
Cattle Egret U U - -
Green Heron - U - -
Black-crowned Night-Heron - U - -
American Vultures
Turkey Vulture R R R R
Back to Top Fall Winter Spring Summer
Geese & Ducks
Canada Goose C C C -
Wood Duck - R - -
Green-winged Teal U U U -
Mallard C C C -
Northern Pintail R U R -
Blue-winged Teal - - R -
Cinnamon Teal R S R -
Northern Shoveler C C C -
Gadwall U U U -
American Widgeon C C C -
Canvasback R S R -
Redhead R R R -
Ring-necked Duck U U U -
Lesser Scaup U U U -
Common Goldeneye R R R -
Bufflehead R R R -
Hooded Merganser U U U -
Common Merganser R R R -
Ruddy Duck C C C -
Back to Top Fall Winter Spring Summer
Kites, Eagles & Hawks
Osprey R R R R
White-tailed Kite U U U U
Northern Harrier U U U -
Sharp-shinned Hawk U U U -
Cooper's Hawk C C C U
Red-shouldered Hawk C C C C
Swainson's Hawk - - R -
Red-tailed Hawk C C C C
Golden Eagle R R R R
American Kestrel C C C C
Merlin R R - -
Prairie Falcon - R - -
New World Quail
California Quail C C C C
Rails & Coots
Sora - - S -
American Coot - - S -
Killdeer C C C -
Back to Top Fall Winter Spring Summer
Greater Yellowlegs U U U -
Spotted Sandpiper U U U -
Western Sandpiper R - R -
Least Sandpiper U U U -
Long-billed Dowitcher U U U -
Common Snipe R R R -
Gulls & Terns
Bonaparte's Gull R R R -
Mew Gull - - S -
Ring-billed Gull C C C -
California Gull C C C -
Herring Gull R R R -
Caspian Tern R - R S
Pigeons & Doves
Rock Dove C C C C
Band-tailed Pigeon C C C C
Spotted Dove C C C C
Mourning Dove C C C C
Common Ground-Dove R R R R
Back to Top Fall Winter Spring Summer
Greater Roadrunner U U U U
Barn Owls
Barn Owl U U U U
Typical Owls
Western Screech-Owl R R R R
Greate Horned Owl U U U U
Burrowing Owl R R R R
Lesser Nighthawk - S - R
Common Poorwill S R - -
Whip-poor-will - S - -
Vaux's Swift U - U -
White-throated Swift C C C C
Black-chinned Hummingbird - - C C
Anna's Hummingbird C C C C
Costa's Hummingbird C U C C
Rufous Hummingbird U - U -
Allen's Hummingbird U - U -
Belted Kingfisher U U U U
Back to Top Fall Winter Spring Summer
Lewis's Woodpecker R R - -
Acorn Woodpecker C C C C
Red-naped Sapsucker - S - -
Red-breasted Sapsucker - U - -
Nuttall's Woodpecker C C C C
Downy Woodpecker U U U -
Hairy Woodpecker R R - -
Northern Flicker C C C R
Tyrant Flycatchers
Olive-sided Flycatcher R - U -
Western Wood-Pewee U - U -
Willow Flycatcher U - U -
Hammond's Flycatcher - - U -
Gray Flycatcher - R R -
Pacific-slope Flycatcher C S C -
Black Phoebe C C C C
Eastern Phoebe - S - -
Say's Phoebe U U U R
Ash-throated Flycatcher - S U U
Cassin's Kingbird C C C U
Western Kingbird U - C C
Loggerhead Shrike U U U U
Back to Top Fall Winter Spring Summer
Bell's Vireo - - S -
Cassin's Vireo U R U -
Plumbeous Vireo R U U -
Warbling Vireo - - U -
Red-eye Vireo S - - -
Jays & Crows
Steller's Jay S - - -
Western Scrub-Jay C C C C
American Crow C C C C
Common Raven C C C C
Horned Lark U U U U
Tree Swallow C - C -
Violet-green Swallow C - C -
Northern Rough-winged " " C - C C
Barn Swallow C - C U
Cliff Swallow C - C C
Mountain Chickadee U U - -
Back to Top Fall Winter Spring Summer
Bushtit C C C C
Red-breasted Nuthatch S - - -
White-breasted Nuthatch U U - -
Brown Creeper R R - -
Rock Wren C C C C
Canyon Wren C C C C
Bewick's Wren C C C C
House Wren C C C C
Winter Wren - S - -
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher U C U R
California Gnatcatcher R R R R
Ruby-crowned Kinglet C C C -
Western Bluebird C C C -
Swainson's Thrush - - C S
Hermit Thrush R R R R
American Robin C C C -
Varied Thrush - R R -
Back to Top Fall Winter Spring Summer
Wrentit U U U U
Mockingbirds & Thrashers
Northern Mockingbird C C C C
Sage Thrasher - S S -
California Thrasher U U U U
European Starling C C C C
American Pipit C C C -
Cedar Waxwing C C C -
Phainopepla R - R U
Orange-crowned Warbler U U C -
Nashville Warbler U R U -
Virginia's Warbler - R - -
Northern Parula - - S -
Yellow Warbler C R C -
Magnolia Warbler S - R -
Yellow-rumped Warbler C C C -
Black-throated Gray " " U R U -
Townsend's Warbler U R U -
Hermit Warbler R - R -
Blackburnian Warbler S - - -
Black-and-White Warbler R S - -
Worm-eating Warbler S - - -
Ovenbird - S - -
MacGillivray's Warbler R - R -
Common Yellowthroat R - R -
Hooded Warbler - - S -
Wilson's Warbler C R C -
Back to Top Fall Winter Spring Summer
Summer Tanager S -   -
Western Tanager C R C -
Spotted Towhee C C C C
California Towhee C C C C
Rufous-crowned Sparrow U U U U
Chipping Sparrow C U C R
Brewer's Sparrow - R - -
Black-chinned Sparrow - - U R
Vesper Sparrow - U - -
Lark Sparrow U U U U
Sage Sparrow U R U U
Savannah Sparrow C C C -
Fox Sparrow U U U -
Song Sparrow C C C C
Lincoln's Sparrow C C C -
White-crowned Sparrow C C C -
Golden-crowned sparrow C C C -
Dark-eyed Junco U U U -
Black-headed Grosbeak C - C U
Blue Grosbeak - S U U
Lazuli Bunting R - U U
Back to Top Fall Winter Spring Summer
Blackbirds & Orioles
Red-winged Blackbird C C C C
Tricolored Blackbird - R - -
Yellow-headed Blackbird S - - -
Brewer's Blackbird C C C C
Brown-headed Cowbird C C C C
Hooded Oriole U - C C
Bullock's Oriole U S C C
Fringilline Finches
Purple Finch U U U -
House Finch C C C C
Red Crossbill - R - -
Pine Siskin U U U -
Lasser Goldfinch C C C C
Lawrence's Goldfinch R R U U
American Goldfinch C C C -
Old World Sparrows
House Sparrow C C C C

Please report your new bird sightings by contacting us, or drop a note in the Gatehouse lockbox at the Gardens entrance. Be sure to record your name, daytime phone and e-mail address when reporting a siting. THANK YOU!

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Riverside, CA 92521
Tel: (951) 827-1012

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Botanic Gardens
University of California
Riverside, CA 92521-0124