Setophaga graciae - (Baird, 1865)
Grace's Warbler
Other English Common Names: Grace's warbler
Synonym(s): Dendroica graciae Baird, 1865
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Dendroica graciae S. F. Baird, 1865 (TSN 178909)
French Common Names: Paruline de Grace
Spanish Common Names: Chipe Ceja Amarilla
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.105898
Element Code: ABPBX03140
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Vertebrates - Birds - Perching Birds
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Craniata Aves Passeriformes Parulidae Setophaga
Genus Size: D - Medium to large genus (21+ species)
Check this box to expand all report sections:
Concept Reference
Help
Concept Reference: American Ornithologists' Union (AOU). 1998. Check-list of North American birds. Seventh edition. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C. [as modified by subsequent supplements and corrections published in The Auk]. Also available online: http://www.aou.org/.
Concept Reference Code: B98AOU01NAUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Dendroica graciae
Taxonomic Comments: Phylogenetic analyses of sequences of mitochondrial and nuclear DNA (Lovette et al. 2010) indicate that all species formerly placed in Dendroica, one species formerly placed in Wilsonia (citrina), and two species formerly placed in Parula (americana and pitiayumi) form a clade with the single species traditionally placed in Setophaga (ruticilla). The generic name Setophaga has priority for this clade (AOU 2011).

May constitute a superspecies with D. dominica, D. adelaidae, and D. pityophila (AOU 1998).
Conservation Status
Help

NatureServe Status

Global Status: G5
Global Status Last Reviewed: 03Dec1996
Global Status Last Changed: 03Dec1996
Rounded Global Status: G5 - Secure
Nation: United States
National Status: N5B (19Mar1997)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Arizona (S5), Colorado (S3B), Navajo Nation (S5B), Nevada (S2B), New Mexico (S3B,S4N), Texas (S3B), Utah (S2S3B)

Other Statuses

IUCN Red List Category: LC - Least concern

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent: >2,500,000 square km (greater than 1,000,000 square miles)
Range Extent Comments: BREEDING: Subspecies GRACIAE from southern Nevada, southern Utah, southwestern Colorado, northern New Mexico, and western Texas south through eastern Sonora and western Chihuahua. Subspecies YAEGERI in west-central Mexico from southern Sinaloa, Durango, and Zacatecas south to Jalisco and Colima. Subspecies REMOTA along the Pacific coast from Michoacan through Guerrero, Oaxaca, and Chiapas into Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and northern Nicaragua. Subspecies DECORA in Belize (AOU 1983). NON-BREEDING: Northern breeders retreat south for winter, generally not occurring north of Nayarit (AOU 1983).

Overall Threat Impact Comments: Little knowledge of direct threats. TIMBER HARVEST: Miller (1992 cited in Hall et al. 1997) reported declines on Breeding Bird Survey routes in managed forests in Arizona and New Mexico, however, studies of response to silvicultural systems show the species is abundant in select-harvest units (Szaro and Balda 1979a, 1979b; Brawn and Balda 1988). Large-scale clearcutting and extensive overstory removal is detrimental. Current pressures to harvest timber at accelerated rates in Mexico and Central America will likely impact the species. FIRE: Fires that kill canopy trees detrimental. Absent from burned and salvage-logged plots in a large wildfire in a northern Arizona ponderosa pine forest, presumably related to loss of the forest canopy (Overturf 1979 cited in Hall et al. 1997 and in Finch et al. 1997). In New Mexico, Johnson and Wauer (1996) studied changes over 14 years after the 1977 La Mesa wildfire and found that abundance declined on plots where scorch or crown fire killed trees. Note, however, that fire plays an important role in ponderosa pine forests and fire patterns in southwestern ponderosa pine have changed dramatically in this century. Ponderosa pine forests evolved with frequent, low intensity fires which created open stands of larger trees. Today, fire suppression has altered the forest structure, allowing the growth of more small-diameter trees per acre, creating "ladder fuels" that carry fire to the forest crown, and leading to larger, more severe or lethal fires (see Moir et al. 1997). May not be significantly affected by understory burns that do not kill the canopy foliage, but the response to different fire regimes and post-fire ecology needs study. URBANIZATION AND RECREATION: No information is available on response to urbanization which can destroy habitat or alter ecosystem processes and forest structure (e.g. change fire patterns, increase brown-headed cowbird (MOLOTHRUS ATER) or avian predator populations) and recreation activities can have local impacts on vegetation. Marzluff (1997) hypothesizes that the abundance or productivity of canopy-nesting warblers may moderately decline from effects of urbanization through increased predation, habitat loss, and road development; and effects of camping and hiking through habitat changes and disturbance. BROOD PARASITISM: Considered a rare cowbird host (Ehrlich et al. 1988); behavioral response to and rates of parasitism unknown.

Short-term Trend Comments: Common in appropriate habitat. Species has expanded its range northward and recent population trends appear stable, but there is some evidence of declines in the southwest. North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) data is probably most reliable for the recent period from 1980 to 1996, for which trends are stable survey-wide (0.0 percent average annual population change, n=29 survey routes); in Arizona (0.0 percent average annual change, n=14); New Mexico (-0.6 percent change not significant, n=13); and the pinyon juniper woodland physiographic region (1.4 percent change not significant, n=21). Thirty-year BBS data, 1966-1996, show steeply negative trends but none are statistically significant. The thirty-year trend estimates may be confounded by low sample sizes for the period 1966-1979 when only 9 routes total were run survey-wide, so they must be interpreted with caution. Trend estimates for 1966-1979 show steep, statistically significant declines but are based on too few samples to be reliable (Sauer et al. 1997). A reanalysis by Miller (1992 cited in Hall et al. 1997), however, found declining trends on selected BBS routes in Arizona (n=5) and New Mexico (n=6) that run through managed ponderosa pine forests. In the 1970s, expanded its range into California and Nevada where it was previously unknown, and breeding populations were established in five mountain ranges in southern Nevada by the early 1970s (Johnson 1994). DeSante and George (1994) suggest populations have increased in Colorado and Nevada due to a northward range expansion. Brawn and Balda (1988) hypothesized that populations in the southwestern U.S. have increased from presettlement times due to an increase in intermediate-aged trees, and hence an increase in foliage productivity. Scurlock and Finch (1997) compared relative abundance descriptions from accounts in 1911, 1928, and 1961 and suggest the species has increased in this century. Of historical note, in the 1860s Dr. Elliott Coues, who first described Grace's for western science, wrote that it was the most abundant bird after the Audubon's warbler (DENDROICA CORONATA) in montane Arizona pine forests (Bent 1953).

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
Help
Global Range: (>2,500,000 square km (greater than 1,000,000 square miles)) BREEDING: Subspecies GRACIAE from southern Nevada, southern Utah, southwestern Colorado, northern New Mexico, and western Texas south through eastern Sonora and western Chihuahua. Subspecies YAEGERI in west-central Mexico from southern Sinaloa, Durango, and Zacatecas south to Jalisco and Colima. Subspecies REMOTA along the Pacific coast from Michoacan through Guerrero, Oaxaca, and Chiapas into Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and northern Nicaragua. Subspecies DECORA in Belize (AOU 1983). NON-BREEDING: Northern breeders retreat south for winter, generally not occurring north of Nayarit (AOU 1983).

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map
NOTE: The maps for birds represent the breeding status by state and province. In some jurisdictions, the subnational statuses for common species have not been assessed and the status is shown as not-assessed (SNR). In some jurisdictions, the subnational status refers to the status as a non-breeder; these errors will be corrected in future versions of these maps. A species is not shown in a jurisdiction if it is not known to breed in the jurisdiction or if it occurs only accidentally or casually in the jurisdiction. Thus, the species may occur in a jurisdiction as a seasonal non-breeding resident or as a migratory transient but this will not be indicated on these maps. See other maps on this web site that depict the Western Hemisphere ranges of these species at all seasons of the year.
Endemism: occurs (regularly, as a native taxon) in multiple nations

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AZ, CO, NM, NN, NV, TX, UT

Range Map
Note: Range depicted for New World only. The scale of the maps may cause narrow coastal ranges or ranges on small islands not to appear. Not all vagrant or small disjunct occurrences are depicted. For migratory birds, some individuals occur outside of the passage migrant range depicted. For information on how to obtain shapefiles of species ranges see our Species Mapping pages at www.natureserve.org/conservation-tools/data-maps-tools.

Range Map Compilers: NatureServe, 2002


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
CO Archuleta (08007), Boulder (08013), Dolores (08033), El Paso (08041)*, Gunnison (08051), La Plata (08067), Larimer (08069), Mesa (08077), Montezuma (08083), Montrose (08085), Pueblo (08101)*, San Miguel (08113), Teller (08119)
NM Los Alamos (35028), Santa Fe (35049)*
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
10 St. Vrain (10190005)+
11 Upper Arkansas (11020002)+, Fountain (11020003)+*
13 Upper Rio Grande (13020101)+*, Rio Grande-Santa Fe (13020201)+
14 Colorado headwaters-Plateau (14010005)+, Upper Gunnison (14020002)+, Lower Gunnison (14020005)+, Upper Dolores (14030002)+, San Miguel (14030003)+, Lower Dolores (14030004)+, Upper San Juan (14080101)+, Piedra (14080102)+, Animas (14080104)+, Middle San Juan (14080105)+, Mancos (14080107)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
Help
Basic Description: A small bird (wood-warbler).
Reproduction Comments: Clutch size three to four (usually three); two broods (Terres 1980; Ehrlich et al. 1988).
Ecology Comments: Often found in association with yellow-rumped warbler (DENDROICA CORONATA) and olive warbler (PEUCEDRAMUS TAENIATUS). Occurs in mixed species flocks (Howell and Webb 1995). Relative abundances range from 1.1 to 4.9 birds per Breeding Bird Survey route (Sauer et al. 1997). In Arizona, recorded breeding densities range from 3.8 to 19.5 pairs per 40 hectares (Szaro and Balda 1979a); and 6.3 to 23.9 pairs per 40 hectares (Brawn and Balda 1988). Recorded breeding territory sizes range from 0.24 to 0.83 hectares (Szaro and Balda 1979a).
Non-Migrant: Y
Locally Migrant: Y
Long Distance Migrant: Y
Mobility and Migration Comments: Migratory in U.S. and northern Mexico and winters from Sonora and Chihuahua south through breeding range; year-round resident from central Mexico southward to north central Nicaragua (AOU 1998; Rappole et al. 1983; Howell and Webb 1995). Spring arrival observed in Sonora early April; New Mexico late April; Arizona, mid-March (Bent 1953).
Terrestrial Habitat(s): Forest - Conifer, Forest - Mixed, Savanna, Woodland - Conifer, Woodland - Mixed
Habitat Comments: Open pine forest, pine-oak association and pine savanna (Tropical to Temperate zones; AOU 1998). Usually nests on outer limb of pine, 6-18 meters above ground.

UNITED STATES: Montane pine and pine-oak forest (Ehrlich et al. 1988). In Arizona, common in Transition Zone throughout state (Phillips et al. 1964). In most of U.S. range, breeds in ponderosa pine (PINUS PONDEROSA); along Mexican border, also uses Chihuahua pine (PINUS LEIOPHYLLA) and Apache pine (PINUS ENGELMANNII). A bird of the high canopy, uses pine stands with or without oak understories (Rosenstock 1998), but in an Arizona study breeding densities were highest (7.9 to 23.9 pairs per 40 hectares) in stands with medium to high oak densities (unquantified), possibly due to higher ambient insect abundance associated with the oaks (Brawn and Balda 1988). Nearly always seen in pine canopy, only occasionally in other vegetation. Szaro and Balda (1979a) recorded between 2.7 percent and 27.3 percent of their observations in Gambel oak; the higher value where pines were severely thinned. At some sites on edge of range (e.g. Nevada) uses white fir (ABIES CONCOLOR; Dunn and Garrett 1997). Cup nest on a horizontal branch or in crown of pine; made of oak catkins, plant fibers, lined with fine materials (Ehrlich et al. 1988).

MEXICO AND CENTRAL AMERICA: Wintering and permanent resident birds found pine savannah, pine forest, and pine-oak woodland, in mid- to upper canopy. Closely associated with pines, generally preferring sparse stands of smaller pines, 5-10 meters high. On Pacific Coastal slope of Mexico from Nayarit to w. Chiapas, in humid yellow pine (spp.?) forests, 800-1,800 meters. On eastern flank of Sierra Madre Occidental, in arid ponderosa pine, Chihuahua pine, Apache pine, and pine-oak woodland 1,800-2,700 meters. Central Michoacan, in humid pine forest and pine-oak woodland, 1,500-2,500 meters. Belize and Caribbean coast of Nicaragua, in humid coastal pine forest near sea level. El Salvador, NW Nicaragua, SE Chiapas, Guatemala and Honduras, in humid pine forests 650-1,500 meters. (Webster 1961; Ehrlich et al. 1988; Howell and Webb 1995). Hutto (1992) described species as a two-zone generalist, using both cloud forest and pine-oak-fir forest.

NON-BREEDING: Migrants and vagrants reported in riparian woodlands, oaks, and tamarisk in addition to pines (Dunn and Garrett 1997).

Adult Food Habits: Invertivore
Immature Food Habits: Invertivore
Food Comments: Usually forages for active, mobile insects high in branches of pines; rarely in oaks and nonconifers. Gleans insects from needles, cones and small branches or darts out and snatches flying insects (Dunn and Garrett 1997). Most often perches on small twigs (Szaro and Balda 1979a).
Adult Phenology: Diurnal
Immature Phenology: Diurnal
Length: 13 centimeters
Weight: 9 grams
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
Help
Management Summary
Help
Stewardship Overview: A high canopy bird, partial to pine forests of the southwest, Mexico, and Central America and relatively common in appropriate habitats. Classified as a species of concern by Partners in Flight in Arizona and New Mexico for the Mogollon Rim, Mexican Highlands, and Colorado Plateau physiographic regions. Current population trends appear stable and there is evidence of range expansion, however one analysis indicates populations are declining in managed forests in Arizona and New Mexico. Research indicates this warbler tolerates selective timber harvest. Habitat loss from accelerated timber harvest may be a concern in Mexico and Central America, home to both wintering and year-round resident populations. Further research needed to determine population status and limiting factors.
Species Impacts: Exclusively an insectivore, may be beneficial in controlling or reducing insect pests in pine forests.
Restoration Potential: Still a common species, and should benefit from pine forest management that maintains pine stands, and possibly shrub (e.g. Gambel oak) understory, with similar structure and configuration to presettlement forests. An international perspective on the impacts of timber harvest in pine forests will be crucial to the long-term viability.
Preserve Selection & Design Considerations: No information on landscape relationships, such as area sensitivity, patch size, habitat configuration. In Arizona and New Mexico, the majority of habitat is on public lands: 62 percent of ponderosa pine forests are on National Forest and other public lands, 36 percent is under private or Tribal ownership (Raish et al. 1997), however, the relative habitat quality by ownership is unknown.
Management Requirements: Primarily uses the upper canopy of pine forests for foraging and nesting. Activities that reduce or clear pine forests or degrade the forest canopy or prey availability would be detrimental. Activities that reduce or remove understory shrubs and other vegetation (e.g. shrub eradication, grazing, fire) may have less impact, but the importance of understory vegetation to this species is poorly understood. Szaro and Balda (1979a) , however, found that Gambel oak on open forest sites was used more often than predicted based on the shrub's availability. In addition, Brawn and Balda (1988) reported higher breeding densities in plots with moderate or high oak density than in plots with no oak or low oak density.

TIMBER HARVEST: Complete removal of pines is detrimental, but occurs in stands ranging from low to high pine densities (Franzreb and Ohmart 1978; Szaro and Balda 1979a; Brawn and Balda 1988). Highest breeding densities reported on silviculturally treated plots, suggesting a preference for more open canopies. In a study on the Mogollon Rim in north-central Arizona (see Szaro and Balda 1979a, 1979b) breeding densities were highest on a "silviculturally cut" plot (two-year average 19.1 pairs per 40 hectares), and in "irregular strip shelterwood " plot (14.3 pairs per 40 hectares). The silviculturally cut plot was thinned to upgrade the stand and Gambel oak was left largely intact (stands with smaller diameter trees (10 inches dbh) were thinned to a growing stock level of 60 square feet per acre of basal area, and stands with trees more than 12 inches dbh and larger were thinned to an actual 70 square feet per acre of basal area). The irregular strip shelterwood plot was harvested in a pattern of alternate cut and leave strips, and Gambel oak was left in the cut strips. Lower breeding densities were recorded on an uncut control plot (9.0 pairs per 40 hectares), and a severely thinned plot (6.8 pairs per 40 hectares). In another analysis in the same study area, highest density (23.9 pairs per 40 hectares) was recorded in a moderately thinned stand with moderate pine density and high Gambel oak density (Brawn and Balda 1988).

No information on reproductive success or survival. Given Miller's (1992 cited in Hall et al. 1997) report of population declines for this species on Breeding Bird Survey routes in managed forests, more research is needed on the species' response to different silvicultural systems over time.

Timber management guidelines for nongame birds in Arizona ponderosa pine communities suggested by Szaro and Balda (1979b) include maintaining Gambel oak; leaving 25 trees/acre of 3-6 inches dbh; minimum 17 trees/acre 6-9 inches dbh; minimum 32 trees/acre >9 inches dbh; several overmature trees/acre for snag recruitment; 2.6 snags/acre; and doing large-scale removal only in strips or small blocks. Information for subtropical and tropical pine forests is lacking.

Monitoring Requirements: A diurnal songbird; sings from treetops with a recognizable song; active and restless. Should be adequately monitored by standard survey methods. See Staicer (1989) for notes on songs related to behavior.
Management Research Needs: Many aspects of species natural history and ecology unknown. Need information on breeding biology; wintering ecology; migratory patterns and location of wintering grounds for migratory populations; lifespan and survivorship; physiology; diet, nutrition and energetics; disease, nest predation and other sources of mortality; rates of and response to brood parasitism; philopatry, territory size; details of habitat relationships; limiting factors. Need better knowledge of the effects of land management activities throughout the species' range, especially Mexico and Central America. Need information on the immediate and long-term effects of current silvicultural systems, particularly effects on reproductive success and survival, and in the subtropical and tropical pine forests of Mexico and Central America. Need quantified information on habitat and landscape relationships, especially in regard to reproductive success. Need an understanding of this warbler's relationship to understory vegetation that may influence levels of insect prey (e.g. effect of oak removal). Also need information on response to fire patterns, insect outbreaks, weather patterns; effects of pesticides used in pine forests.
Population/Occurrence Delineation
Help
Group Name: Passerines

Use Class: Breeding
Subtype(s): Foraging Area, Nest Site, Nesting Colony
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: Evidence of historical breeding, or current and likely recurring breeding, at a given location, minimally a reliable observation of one or more breeding pairs in appropriate habitat. Be cautious about creating EOs for observations that may represent single breeding events outside the normal breeding distribution.

Mapping Guidance: Breeding occurrences include nesting areas as well as foraging areas.

For swallows and other species that have separate nesting and foraging areas, separations are based on nest sites or nesting areas, not to locations of foraging individuals. For example, nesting areas separated by a gap larger than the separation distance are different occurrences, regardless of the foraging locations of individuals from those nesting areas. This separation procedure is appropriate because nesting areas are the critical aspect of swallow breeding occurrences, tend to be relatively stable or at least somwhat predictable in general location, and so are the basis for effective conservation; foraging areas are much more flexible and not necessarily static.

Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Justification: Significant dispersal and associated high potential for gene flow among populations of birds separated by tens of kilometers (e.g., Moore and Dolbeer 1989), and increasing evidence that individuals leave their usual home range to engage in extrapair copulations, as well as long foraging excursions of some species, make it difficult to circumscribe occurrences on the basis of meaningful population units without occurrences becoming too large. Hence, a moderate, standardized separation distance has been adopted for songbirds and flycatchers; it should yield occurrences that are not too spatially expansive while also accounting for the likelihood of gene flow among populations within a few kilometers of each other.

Be careful not to separate a population's nesting areas and foraging areas as different occurrences; include them in the same occurrence even if they are more than 5 km apart. Mean foraging radius (from nesting area) of Brown-headed Cowbird females was 4.0 kilometers in California, 1.2 kilometers in Illinois-Missouri (Thompson 1994). Yellow-headed Blackbirds, Brewer's Blackbirds, and probably Red-winged Blackbirds all forage up to 1.6 kilometers away from breeding colony (Willson 1966, Horn 1968). In one study, Brewer's Blackbirds were found as far as 10 kilometers from nesting area (Williams 1952), but this may be unusual.

For swallows and other parrerines with similar behavioral ecology, separation distance pertains to nest sites or nesting colonies, not to locations of foraging individuals. For example, nesting areas separated by a gap of more than 5 km are different occurrences, regardless of the foraging locations of individuals from those nesting areas. This separation procedure is appropriate because nesting areas are the critical aspect of swallow breeding occurrences, tend to be relatively stable or at least somwhat predictable in general location, and so are the basis for effective conservation; foraging areas are much more flexible and not necessarily static.

Be cautious about creating EOs for observations that may represent single breeding events outside the normal breeding distribution.

Unsuitable habitat: Habitat not normally used for breeding/feeding by a particular species. For example, unsuitable habitat for grassland and shrubland birds includes forest/woodland, urban/suburban, and aquatic habitats. Most habitats would be suitable for birds with versatile foraging habits (e.g., most corvids).

Date: 10Sep2004
Author: Hammerson, G.

Use Class: Migratory stopover
Subtype(s): Foraging Area, Roost Site
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: For most passerines: Evidence of recurring presence of migrating individuals (including historical) and potential recurring presence at a given location; minimally a reliable observation of 25 birds in appropriate habitat.

For swallows: Evidence of recurring presence of migrating flocks (including historical) and potential recurring presence at a given location; minimally a reliable observation of 100 birds in appropriate habitat (e.g., traditional roost sites).

Occurrences should be locations where the species is resident for some time during the appropriate season; it is preferable to have observations documenting presence over at least 7 days annually.

EOs should not be described for species that are nomadic during nonbreeding season: e.g., Lark Bunting.

Be cautious about creating EOs for observations that may represent single events.

Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Justification: Separation distance somewhat arbitrary but intended to define occurrences of managable size for conservation purposes. Occurrences defined primarily on the basis of areas supporting concentrations of birds, rather than on the basis of distinct populations.

For swallows and other species with similar behavioral ecology, the separation distance pertains to communal roost sites rather than to foraging areas; the former tend to be more stable and specific over time than the latter.

Date: 03Sep2004
Author: Hammerson, G., and S. Cannings

Use Class: Nonbreeding
Subtype(s): Foraging Area, Roost Site
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: Any area used traditionally in the nonbreeding season (used for populations that are not resident in a location year-round). Minimally, reliable observations of 10 or more individuals in appropriate habitat for 20 or more days at a time. For G1-G3 species, observations of fewer individuals could constitute an occurrence of conservation value. Sites used during migration should be documented under the 'migratory stopover' location use class.

Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Justification: Separation distance is necessarily arbitrary but attempts to balance the high mobility of birds with the need for occurrences of reasonable spatial scope. Note that a population's roost sites and foraging areas are parts of the same occurrence, even if they are more than 5 km apart.

For swallows and other species with similar behavioral ecology, the separation distance pertains to communal roost sites rather than to foraging areas; the former tend to be more stable and specific over time than the latter.

Date: 03Sep2004
Author: Hammerson, G.

Use Class: Nonmigratory
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: Occurrences are based on evidence of historical presence, or current and likely recurring presence, at a particular location. Such evidence minimally includes collection or reliable observation and documentation of one or more individuals in or near appropriate habitat.

These occurrence specifications are used for nonmigratory populations of passerine birds.

Separation Barriers: None.
Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Justification: Significant dispersal and associated high potential for gene flow among populations of birds separated by tens of kilometers (e.g., Moore and Dolbeer 1989), and increasing evidence that individuals leave their usual home range to engage in extrapair copulations, as well as long foraging excursions of some species, make it difficult to circumscribe occurrences on the basis of meaningful population units without occurrences becoming too large. Hence, a moderate, standardized separation distance has been adopted for songbirds and flycatchers; it should yield occurrences that are not too spatially expansive while also accounting for the likelihood of gene flow among populations within a few kilometers of each other.

Be careful not to separate a population's nesting areas and breeding-season foraging areas as different occurrences; include them in the same occurrence even if they are more than 5 km apart. Blue jays have small summer home ranges but fly up to 4 kilometers to harvest mast (Tarvin and Woolfenden 1999). Flocks of pinyon jays range over 21-29 square kilometers (Ligon 1971, Balda and Bateman 1971); nesting and foraging areas may be widely separated. Tricolored blackbirds forage in flocks that range widely to more than 15 kilometers from the nesting colony (Beedy and Hamilton 1999).

Unsuitable habitat: Habitat not normally used for breeding/feeding by a particular species. For example, unsuitable habitat for grassland and shrubland birds includes forest/woodland, urban/suburban, and aquatic habitats. Most habitats would be suitable for birds with versatile foraging habits (e.g., most corvids).

Date: 10Sep2004
Author: Hammerson, G.
Notes: These specs pertain to nonmigratory species.
Population/Occurrence Viability
Help
U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
Help
Authors/Contributors
Help
Management Information Edition Date: 01May1999
Management Information Edition Author: PAIGE, C; REVISIONS BY M. KOENEN AND D. W. MEHLMAN
Management Information Acknowledgments: Support for the preparation of this abstract was provided by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation's Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Initiative, through challenge grant number 97-270 to The Nature Conservancy. Matching funds for this grant were donated by Canon U.S.A., Inc.
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 21Mar1994
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): Hammerson, G.

Zoological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
Help
  • Allen, C. R., S. Demarais, and R. S. Lutz. 1994. Red imported fire ant impact on wildlife: an overview. The Texas Journal of Science 46(1):51-59.

  • American Ornithologists' Union (AOU). 1983. Check-list of North American Birds, 6th edition. Allen Press, Inc., Lawrence, Kansas. 877 pp.

  • American Ornithologists' Union (AOU). 1998. Check-list of North American birds. Seventh edition. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C. [as modified by subsequent supplements and corrections published in The Auk]. Also available online: http://www.aou.org/.

  • American Ornithologists' Union (AOU). 1998. Check-list of North American birds. Seventh edition. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, DC. [as modified by subsequent supplements and corrections published in The Auk]. Also available online: http://www.aou.org/.

  • American Ornithologists' Union (AOU). Chesser, R.T., R.C. Banks, F.K. Barker, C. Cicero, J.L. Dunn, A.W. Kratter, I.J. Lovette, P.C. Rasmussen, J.V. Remsen, Jr., J.D. Rising, D.F. Stotz, and K. Winker. 2011. Fifty-second supplement to the American Ornithologists' Union Check-list of North American Birds. The Auk 128(3):600-613.

  • Andrews, R. R. and R. R. Righter. 1992. Colorado Birds. Denver Museum of Natural History, Denver. 442 pp.

  • Balda, R. P., and G. C. Bateman. 1971. Flocking and annual cycle of the piņon jay, Gymnorhinus cyanocephalus. Condor 73:287-302.

  • Bent, A. C. 1953. Life histories of North American wood warblers. U.S. Natl. Mus. Bull. 203. Washington, D.C.

  • BirdLife International. 2004b. Threatened birds of the world 2004. CD ROM. BirdLife International, Cambridge, UK.

  • Block, W.M., and D.M. Finch. 1997. Songbird ecology in southwestern ponderosa pine forests: a literature review. USDA Forest Service, General Technical Report RM-GTR-292, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Fort Collins, CO. 152 pp.

  • Brawn, J.D., and R.P. Balda. 1988. The influence of silvicultural activity on ponderosa pine forest bird communities in the southwestern United States. Pages 3-21 in J.A. Jackson, editor. Bird Conservation 3. University of Wisconsin Press, Madison, WI.

  • Colorado Bird Observatory. 1997. 1996 Reference Guide to the Monitoring and Conservation Status of Colorado's Breeding Birds. Colorado Bird Observatory, Colorado Division of Wildlife, Great Outdoors Colorado Trust Fund, and Partners, March 21, 1997.

  • DeSante, D.F., and T.L. George. 1994. Population trends in the landbirds of western North America. Studies in Avian Biology 15:173-190.

  • Dunn, J. L., and K. L. Garrett. 1997. A field guide to warblers of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston.

  • Ehrlich, P. R., D. S. Dobkin, and D. Wheye. 1988. The birder's handbook: a field guide to the natural history of North American birds. Simon and Shuster, Inc., New York. xxx + 785 pp.

  • Finch, D.M., J.L. Ganey, W. Yong, R.T. Kimball, and R. Sallabanks. 1997. Effects and interactions of fire, logging, and grazing. Pages 103-136 in Songbird ecology in southwestern Ponderosa Pine forests: a literature review, W.M. Block and D.M. Finch, technical editors. USFS, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Gen. Tech. Rep. RM-GTR-292.

  • Franzreb, K.E., and R.D. Ohmart. 1978. The effects of timber harvesting on breeding birds in a mixed-coniferous forest. Condor 80:431-441.

  • Griscom, L., and A. Sprunt, Jr. 1979. The warblers of America. Doubleday and Co., Garden City, New York. 302 pp.

  • Hall, L. S., M. L. Morrison, and W. B. Block. 1997. Songbird status and roles. Pp. 69-88 in W. M. Block and D. M. Finch, technical editors. Songbird ecology in southwestern ponderosa pine forests: a literature review. USDA Forest Service, General Technical Report RM-GTR-292, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Fort Collins, CO.

  • Harrison, C. 1978. A Field Guide to the Nests, Eggs and Nestlings of North American Birds. Collins, Cleveland, Ohio.

  • Harrison, H.H. 1984. Wood warblers' world. Simon and Schuster, New York. 335 pp.

  • Horn, H. S. 1968. The adaptive significance of colonial nesting in the Brewer's Blackbird. Ecology 49:682-694.

  • Howell, S. N. G., and S. Webb. 1995. A guide to the birds of Mexico and northern Central America. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK.

  • Hutto, R. L. 1992. Habitat distribution of migratory landbird species in western Mexico. Pp. 221-239 in J. M. Hagan and D. W. Johnston, eds. Ecology and conservation of neotropical migrant landbirds. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC.

  • Johnson, N.K. 1994. Pioneering and natural expansion of breeding distributions in western North American birds. Studies in Avian Biology 15:27-44.

  • Johnson, T., and R.H. Wauer. 1996. Avifaunal response to the 1977 La Mesa fire. Pages 70-94 in C.D. Allen, technical editor. Fire effects in southwestern forests. Proceedings of the second La Mesa fire symposium. USDA Forest Service, General Technical Report RM-GTR-286, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Fort Collins, CO.

  • Ligon, J. D. 1971. Late summer-autumnal breeding of the piņon jay in New Mexico. Condor 73:147-153.

  • Marzluff, J.M. 1997. Effects of urbanization and recreation on songbirds. Pages 89-102 in W.M. Block and D.M. Finch, technical editors. Songbird ecology in southwestern ponderosa pine forests: a literature review. USDA Forest Service, General Technical Report RM-GTR-292, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Fort Collins, CO.

  • Miller, R. 1992. Preliminary results from Breeding Bird Survey data estimates of trends in bird populations in or near managed ponderosa pine in the Southwest. Unpubl. Report, Arizona Dept. of Game and Fish, Flagstaff, AZ.

  • Moir, W.H., B. Geils, M.A. Benoit, and D. Scurlock. 1997. Ecology of southwestern ponderosa pine forests. Pages 3-27 in W.M. Block and D.M. Finch, technical editors. Songbird ecology in southwestern ponderosa pine forests: a literature review. USDA Forest Service, General Technical Report RM-GTR-292, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Fort Collins, CO.

  • Moore, W. S., and R. A. Dolbeer. 1989. The use of banding recovery data to estimate dispersal rates and gene flow in avian species: case studies in the Red-winged Blackbird and Common Grackle. Condor 91:242-253.

  • National Geographic Society (NGS). 1983. Field guide to the birds of North America. National Geographic Society, Washington, DC.

  • Nelson, D. 1993. Colorado Bird Atlas: Manual on Use of Breeding Codes. Denver Museum of Natural History, Denver. 27 pp.

  • Overturf, J.H. 1979. The effects of forest fire on breeding bird populations of ponderosa pine forests of northern Arizona. M.S. thesis, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ.

  • Parker III, T. A., D. F. Stotz, and J. W. Fitzpatrick. 1996. Ecological and distributional databases for neotropical birds. The University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

  • Phillips, A., J. Marshall, and G. Monson. 1964. The birds of Arizona. The University of Arizona Press, Tucson, AZ.

  • Raish, C., W. Yong, and J. Marzluff. 1997. Contemporary human use of southwestern ponderosa pine forests. Pages 28-42 in W.M. Block and D.M. Finch, technical editors. Songbird ecology in southwestern ponderosa pine forests: a literature review. USDA Forest Service, General Technical Report RM-GTR-292, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Fort Collins, CO.

  • Rappole, J. H., E. S. Morton, T. E. Lovejoy, and J. L. Ruos. 1983. Nearctic avian migrants in the neotropics. USDI Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) WR207. Washington, D.C. 646pp.

  • Rosenfield, J. A. 1998. Detection of natural hybridization between pink salmon (Oncorhynchus gorbuscha) and chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) in the Laurentian Great Lakes using meristic, morphological, and color evidence. Copeia 1998:706-714.

  • Sauer, J.R., J.E. Hines, G. Gough, I. Thomas, and B.G. Peterjohn. 1997a. The North American Breeding Bird Survey Results and Analysis. Version 96.3. Online. Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Laurel, MD. Available: http://www.mbr.nbs.gov/bbs/bbs.html.

  • Scurlock, D., and D.M. Finch. 1997. A historical overview. Pages 43-68 in W.M. Block and D.M. Finch, technical editors. Songbird ecology in southwestern ponderosa pine forests: a literature review. USDA Forest Service, General Technical Report RM-GTR-292, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Fort Collins, CO.

  • Sibley, D. A. 2000a. The Sibley guide to birds. Alfred A. Knopf, New York.

  • Staicer, C.A. 1989. Characteristics, use, and significance of two singing behaviors in Grace's Warbler (DENDROICA GRACIAE). Auk 106:49-63.

  • Szaro, R.C., and R.P. Balda. 1979a. Bird community dynamics in a ponderosa pine forest. Studies in Avian Biology 3:1-66.

  • Szaro, R.C., and R.P. Balda. 1979b. Effects of harvesting ponderosa pine on nongame bird populations. USDA Forest Service, Research Paper RM-212, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Fort Collins, CO.

  • Tarvin, K. A., and G. E. Woolfenden. 1999. Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata). No. 469 IN A. Poole and F. Gill, editors. The birds of North America. The Birds of North America, Inc., Philadelphia, PA. 32pp.

  • Terres, J. K. 1980. The Audubon Society encyclopedia of North American birds. Alfred A. Knopf, New York.

  • Thompson, F. R., III. 1994. Temporal and spatial patterns of breeding brown-headed cowbirds in the midwestern United States. Auk 111:979-990.

  • Webb, R. G. 1961. Observations on the life histories of turtles (genus PSEUDEMYS and GRAPTEMYS) in Lake Texoma, Oklahoma. American Midland Naturalist 65:193-214.

  • Williams, L. 1952b. Breeding behavior of the Brewer blackbird. Condor 54:3-47.

  • Willson, M. F. 1966. Breeding ecology of the Yellow-headed Blackbird. Ecological Monographs 36:51-77.

  • Zook, J. L. 2002. Distribution maps of the birds of Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama. Unpublished.

Use Guidelines & Citation

Use Guidelines and Citation

The Small Print: Trademark, Copyright, Citation Guidelines, Restrictions on Use, and Information Disclaimer.

Note: All species and ecological community data presented in NatureServe Explorer at http://explorer.natureserve.org were updated to be current with NatureServe's central databases as of March 2018.
Note: This report was printed on

Trademark Notice: "NatureServe", NatureServe Explorer, The NatureServe logo, and all other names of NatureServe programs referenced herein are trademarks of NatureServe. Any other product or company names mentioned herein are the trademarks of their respective owners.

Copyright Notice: Copyright © 2018 NatureServe, 4600 N. Fairfax Dr., 7th Floor, Arlington Virginia 22203, U.S.A. All Rights Reserved. Each document delivered from this server or web site may contain other proprietary notices and copyright information relating to that document. The following citation should be used in any published materials which reference the web site.

Citation for data on website including State Distribution, Watershed, and Reptile Range maps:
NatureServe. 2018. NatureServe Explorer: An online encyclopedia of life [web application]. Version 7.1. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia. Available http://explorer.natureserve.org. (Accessed:

Citation for Bird Range Maps of North America:
Ridgely, R.S., T.F. Allnutt, T. Brooks, D.K. McNicol, D.W. Mehlman, B.E. Young, and J.R. Zook. 2003. Digital Distribution Maps of the Birds of the Western Hemisphere, version 1.0. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia, USA.

Acknowledgement Statement for Bird Range Maps of North America:
"Data provided by NatureServe in collaboration with Robert Ridgely, James Zook, The Nature Conservancy - Migratory Bird Program, Conservation International - CABS, World Wildlife Fund - US, and Environment Canada - WILDSPACE."

Citation for Mammal Range Maps of North America:
Patterson, B.D., G. Ceballos, W. Sechrest, M.F. Tognelli, T. Brooks, L. Luna, P. Ortega, I. Salazar, and B.E. Young. 2003. Digital Distribution Maps of the Mammals of the Western Hemisphere, version 1.0. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia, USA.

Acknowledgement Statement for Mammal Range Maps of North America:
"Data provided by NatureServe in collaboration with Bruce Patterson, Wes Sechrest, Marcelo Tognelli, Gerardo Ceballos, The Nature Conservancy-Migratory Bird Program, Conservation International-CABS, World Wildlife Fund-US, and Environment Canada-WILDSPACE."

Citation for Amphibian Range Maps of the Western Hemisphere:
IUCN, Conservation International, and NatureServe. 2004. Global Amphibian Assessment. IUCN, Conservation International, and NatureServe, Washington, DC and Arlington, Virginia, USA.

Acknowledgement Statement for Amphibian Range Maps of the Western Hemisphere:
"Data developed as part of the Global Amphibian Assessment and provided by IUCN-World Conservation Union, Conservation International and NatureServe."

NOTE: Full metadata for the Bird Range Maps of North America is available at:
http://www.natureserve.org/library/birdDistributionmapsmetadatav1.pdf.

Full metadata for the Mammal Range Maps of North America is available at:
http://www.natureserve.org/library/mammalsDistributionmetadatav1.pdf.

Restrictions on Use: Permission to use, copy and distribute documents delivered from this server is hereby granted under the following conditions:
  1. The above copyright notice must appear in all copies;
  2. Any use of the documents available from this server must be for informational purposes only and in no instance for commercial purposes;
  3. Some data may be downloaded to files and altered in format for analytical purposes, however the data should still be referenced using the citation above;
  4. No graphics available from this server can be used, copied or distributed separate from the accompanying text. Any rights not expressly granted herein are reserved by NatureServe. Nothing contained herein shall be construed as conferring by implication, estoppel, or otherwise any license or right under any trademark of NatureServe. No trademark owned by NatureServe may be used in advertising or promotion pertaining to the distribution of documents delivered from this server without specific advance permission from NatureServe. Except as expressly provided above, nothing contained herein shall be construed as conferring any license or right under any NatureServe copyright.
Information Warranty Disclaimer: All documents and related graphics provided by this server and any other documents which are referenced by or linked to this server are provided "as is" without warranty as to the currentness, completeness, or accuracy of any specific data. NatureServe hereby disclaims all warranties and conditions with regard to any documents provided by this server or any other documents which are referenced by or linked to this server, including but not limited to all implied warranties and conditions of merchantibility, fitness for a particular purpose, and non-infringement. NatureServe makes no representations about the suitability of the information delivered from this server or any other documents that are referenced to or linked to this server. In no event shall NatureServe be liable for any special, indirect, incidental, consequential damages, or for damages of any kind arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information contained in any documents provided by this server or in any other documents which are referenced by or linked to this server, under any theory of liability used. NatureServe may update or make changes to the documents provided by this server at any time without notice; however, NatureServe makes no commitment to update the information contained herein. Since the data in the central databases are continually being updated, it is advisable to refresh data retrieved at least once a year after its receipt. The data provided is for planning, assessment, and informational purposes. Site specific projects or activities should be reviewed for potential environmental impacts with appropriate regulatory agencies. If ground-disturbing activities are proposed on a site, the appropriate state natural heritage program(s) or conservation data center can be contacted for a site-specific review of the project area (see Visit Local Programs).

Feedback Request: NatureServe encourages users to let us know of any errors or significant omissions that you find in the data through (see Contact Us). Your comments will be very valuable in improving the overall quality of our databases for the benefit of all users.