Bird Status & Distribution


The notes below indicate the current status of these birds to the best of my knowledge. Information has been gleaned from various sources including eBird, Records of NJ Birds, and personal communications. …. For a more detailed status of each species state-wide, see Bill Boyle’s book. Any updates and corrections to the information below are appreciated. If a species is not listed, it is because I have found no records of sightings in the county.

Need status descriptions – put on bottom

<<WORK IN PROGRESS - Only done with ducks, geese, and swans so far.>>


Ducks, Geese, and Swans

Greater White-fronted Goose – very rare fall migrant and winter visitor. Usually found in large fields among other goose species.

Snow Goose - Uncommon migrant usually seen in large flocks overhead. Large fields in the more rural parts of the county may house winter populations.

Ross's Goose- No known recent county sightings. Flocks of Snow Geese are worth checking in winter.

Brant – Common to abundant in late fall, winter, and early-mid spring along Raritan Bay and the Arthur Kill. Rare away from the coast.

Cackling Goose – Rare winter visitor typically found in flocks of Canada Geese.

Canada Goose – Common to abundant at all seasons. Resident populations are supplemented by migrants in winter.

Mute Swan – Uncommon resident with numbers increased in winter by migrants. The Raritan River has small populations as well as some ponds and lakes in the county.

Tundra Swan – Rare migrant. One recent sighting of 2 birds from March 2011 in a large field in Monroe.

Wood Duck – Common summer resident on wooded wetlands and ponds. Uncommon winter resident.

Gadwall – Common spring and fall migrant and winter resident. Gadwall is a possible future breeding species in the county.

American Wigeon - Uncommon spring and fall migrant and winter resident.

American Black Duck – Permanent resident, common in winter and migration, uncommon summer resident.

Mallard – Abundant year-round resident.

Blue-winged Teal – Uncommon to rare migrant and very rare winter resident.

Northern Shoveler – Very rare summer resident. Uncommon migrant and winter resident.

Northern Pintail – Uncommon migrant and winter resident.

Green-winged Teal – Uncommon migrant and winter resident. Very rare summer resident.

Canvasback – Rare winter resident on Raritan Bay and along the Raritan River.

Redhead – Rare winter visitor on Raritan Bay and at inland lakes. In March 2011, a few were present on Duhernal Lake in East Brunswick.

Ring-necked Duck – Uncommon migrant and winter resident on the Raritan River and other inland bodies of water. Rare on Raritan Bay.

Greater Scaup – Common to abundant winter resident on Raritan Bay. Rare elsewhere.

Lesser Scaup – Uncommon to rare along Raritan Bay and Raritan River.

Harlequin Duck – Very rare winter visitor on Raritan Bay. Last sighting from Perth Amboy waterfront in

Surf Scoter – Uncommon on Raritan Bay in winter and during migration. Possible on other bodies of water, but there are no reports in eBird away from Raritan Bay.

White-winged Scoter – Rare on Raritan Bay during winter and migration. Very rare on the Raritan River with one known sighting of 4 birds in May 2011.

Black Scoter - Uncommon on Raritan Bay in winter and during migration. Possible on other bodies of water, but there are no reports in eBird away from Raritan Bay.

Long-tailed Duck – Uncommon winter resident on Raritan Bay.

Bufflehead – Common winter resident on Raritan River, Raritan Bay, and other larger bodies of water.

Common Goldeneye – Uncommon winter visitor on Raritan Bay and the Raritan River.

Hooded Merganser – Uncommon winter resident along the Raritan River and at other lakes and ponds throughout the county.

Common Merganser – Common winter resident on Raritan River and other large bodies of water. Uncommon spring migrant.

Red-breasted Merganser – Common winter resident on Raritan Bay. Rare winter resident inland along the river. Very rare elsewhere. Individuals typically linger into April and even into May.