March 2020

As spring arrives local birds are setting up nest sites and seasonal birds are beginning to move.  On the 1st in Logan County Braden Farris counted Yellow-bellied Sapsucker near Kingfisher and Ross’s Goose near Cashion; and in OKC Dora Webb noticed a Carolina Wren carrying nesting material. At Lake Hefner Jacob Crissup observed Surf Scoter and Yellow-billed Loon, Bill Diffin a White-winged Scoter and Eared Grebe and Brent Barnes a Red-necked Grebe. These winter birds were sighted several times during the month. On the 2nd Daron Patterson reported Sandhill Crane near Okeene in Kingfisher County; and Steve Davis discovered Yellow-headed Blackbird at the Mustang Road Playas.  On the 3rd Curtis Stewart found at least 12 Great Blue Herons with nest sites in one large snag near Skeleton Creek along OK-51 just west of OK-74 in Kingfisher County.  On the 5th Elizabeth & Tim Pratt had Greater Roadrunner at Wes Watkins Lake in Pottawatomie County; and Joe Grzybowski identified Lesser Black-backed Gull at 63rd & Kilpatrick Turnpike in Canadian County. 

On the 7th Zach Poland encountered Lesser Yellowlegs at Stinchcomb WR West in Canadian County.  On the 8th Bruce Neville heard Hermit Thrush at the I-35 Northbound Rest Area in Garvin County; and Braden Farris spotted Long-billed Dowitcher at Stinchcomb WR West.  On the 10th Tim O’Connell heard Fish Crow at OSU.  On the 11th Bruce Neville located Lesser Scaup at Rush Springs Sewage Lagoons in Grady County; and Marisue Hilliard saw Vesper Sparrow at Mitch Park in Edmond.  On the 13th Braden Farris verified Fish Crow at Lake Stanley Draper.  On the 14th Scott Loss photographed Neotropic Cormorant at Boomer Lake Park; and Brian Marra detected Blue-gray Gnatcatcher at the SNU Football Complex in OKC. On the 15th Cody Delano noticed Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Barn Swallow and Cliff Swallow at Kevin Gottshall Memorial Park in Cleveland County.  On the 17th Dan Cowell recognized House Wren and Spotted Towhee in Paul’s Valley; Nick Kiehl recorded Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs at Meridian Technology Center Pond in Stillwater; and Aaron Mechem saw White-winged Dove in Warr Acres. 

On the 18th Jack Olson added Inca Dove in Stillwater; and Dick Gunn got Sandhill Cranes along South Jenkins in Norman. On the 19th Cody Delano came across Pectoral Sandpiper at Ten Mile Flats in Cleveland County; and Zach DuFran described Yellow-crowned Night-Heron sitting on a well-established nest in a sycamore tree in Norman.  On the 20th Caleb McKinney tallied Brewer’s Blackbird at the Ninnekah Softball Fields in Grady County; and Brian Marra documented Gray Catbird at Stinchcomb WR East in Oklahoma County.  On the 21st Jacob Crissup turned up Eastern Meadowlark and Eastern Phoebe near Paul’s Valley; Brian Marra confirmed Baird’s Sandpiper and Pectoral Sandpiper at the Morgan Road Playa; and Braden Farris viewed Lesser Yellowlegs at Ten Mile Flat and Black-and-white Warbler at Lake Thunderbird.    

On the 22nd Northern Rough-winged Swallows and Tree Swallows were reported by Brian Marra at Lake Konawa in Seminole County, and Mary & Lou Truex at Lindsay in Garvin County; while Steve Davis last saw the Lesser Goldfinch at his feeder in OKC.  On the 23rd Jo-Ann Doyle had Savanna Sparrow and Song Sparrow at McLoud Road in Pottawatomie County; D&D Norris found Hairy Woodpecker at Kairworks Garden in Logan County; and Rachel Wrenn discovered Louisiana Waterthrush in Norman.  On the 24th Shane Clark had Northern Shoveler near Chandler in Lincoln County; Joe Grzybowski identified American Golden-Plover at Ten Mile Flat; and Dick Gunn came across Yellow-throated Warbler along South Jenkins.  Scissor-tailed Flycatchers were observed by Larry Mays in Newcastle and Corban Hemphill in Stillwater. 

On the 25th Jacob Crissup encountered Yellow-headed Blackbird along Hwy #33 in Kingfisher County; Joe Grzybowski identified Upland Sandpiper, Pectoral Sandpiper, and Lesser Yellowlegs at Ten Mile Flat; and Tim O’Connell detected Louisiana Waterthrush in Stillwater.  On the 26th Chris Butler saw White-eyed Vireo and Cinnamon Teal at Maud Wetlands in Seminole County; a Northern Parula was photographed along Alameda Drive in Norman; Scott Loss located Swainson’s Hawk, and Lark Sparrow at Whittenberg Park in Stillwater; Braden Farris spotted Snowy Egret and White-eyed Vireo at south Lake Hefner; and Jimmy Woodard verified Black-and-white Warbler at Lake Stanley Draper.  On the 27th Larry Mays recognized Sprague’s Pipit and Horned Lark and Brian Marra noticed Vesper Sparrow at Garrett Farmstead near the Newcastle Public Library in McClain County; and Jerry Vanbebber recorded Cattle Egret at Ten Mile Flat and Yellow-throated Warbler along Mohawk Road in Norman. 

On the 28th Larry Mays confirmed American Pipit, Chestnut-collared Longspur and photographed Sprague’s Pipit at Garrett Farmstead; Rusty Derringer got Eastern Kingbird and Blue-gray Gnatcatcher near Wellston in Lincoln County; Braden Farris came across Little Blue Heron, Snowy Egret and Black-necked Stilt at Rose Lake in Canadian County; Deanne McKinney added Swainson’s Hawk at NW 63rd & Kilpatrick Turnpike; Pat Velte photographed Whooping Crane at Rose Lake; and Esther Key described Clay-colored Sparrow in Moore.  Landon Neumann had Northern Parula at Couch Park in Stillwater; Scott Loss documented Solitary Sandpiper flying over his yard in Stillwater; Braden Farris viewed Peregrine Falcon at Lake Hefner; Dave Woodson photographed Yellow-headed Blackbird in Edmond; Bill Diffin turned up Osprey at Lake Hefner – Prairie Dog Point; and Hal Yocum watched Ruby-throated Hummingbird in Edmond.      

On the 29th Zach DuFran photographed the Whooping Cranes as they left Rose Lake; Logan Carter spotted Barred Owl, and White-throated Sparrow at Maud in the Pottawatomie County side of town; Jason Shaw found Scissor-tailed Flycatcher at Austin Hall in Chickasha in Grady County; Alex Harman counted Scissor-tailed Flycatcher in McLoud in Lincoln County.  Bill Diffin identified Peregrine Falcon, Cinnamon Teal, American Golden-Plover, Black-necked Stilt, Long-billed Dowitcher, and Lesser Yellowlegs at Rose Lake.  Joe Grzybowski reported Sprague’s Pipit at Ten Mile Flats; and Corban Hemphill had Osprey at Boomer Lake Park in Stillwater.   

On the 30th Cassidy Massey confirmed Yellow-headed Blackbird north of Edmond in Logan County; Bridger Arrington located Eastern Bluebird in South Muhall in Logan County.  Scott Loss identified Pine Warbler, Black-and-white Warbler and Yellow-throated Warbler at Lake Carl Blackwell; and Joe Grzybowski documented American Avocets flying over Lake Thunderbird – South Dam looking for a place to land.  While eating lunch in the rain Elizabeth & Tim Pratt noticed Cliff Swallows flying over Lake El Reno.  On the 31st Chris Butler encountered Grasshopper Sparrow and Scissor-tailed Flycatcher at Garrett Farmstead; and Nathan Ukens photographed Ruby-throated Hummingbird at Stinchcomb WR East.

In the Central Oklahoma area during March 2020, 180 species were reported with 38 new species bringing the total for 2020 to 195. I appreciate those who help provide the history of central Oklahoma birds. Information is accessed at:  ebird. 2020 eBird: An online database of bird distribution and abundance [web application]. eBird Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York. Available: (Accessed: March 31, 2020). And occasionally from Facebook and the OKBIRDS List. I can be contacted by e-mail at  Esther M. Key, Editor.


                                                                March   FEB         Jan                                        

Garvin                                   053         037         003

                Lincoln                                  054         047         030

                Kingfisher                            056         021         010

Pottawatomie                   058         035         027        

Grady                                    073         068         048

                Logan                                    088         079         059        

McClain                                094         073         038

                Canadian                             133         104         089

                Cleveland                            149         114         093        

                Oklahoma                           154         133         125

                Payne                                   154         122         111


Number of bird species reported in 2019 according to eBird. Current year, region.