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San Francisco County Birding

Ross's Geese ©  Hugh Cotter

San Francisco City Cumulative Species List 2018

Year Total


as of Dec 31, 2018

Each year since 1998 a cumulative species list has been maintained for San Francisco City.
The City is defined at the peninsular part of San Francisco county.

December 2018
With the addition of four species in December the previous highest cumulative year total was surpassed by six species. Additions this month included Lapland Longspur, a Laysan Albatross corpse and Black-vented Shearwaters. The undoubted highlight was a Harris's Sparrow at Candlestick Point; seen for only one day, the first record in the City in over 20 years.
End of Month/ End of Year Total - 301 species.

November 2018
With the already excellent year winding down four species were added to the cumulative list this month. These included the first records of Lesser Black-backed Gulls for the City, Rough-legged Hawk, Mountain Bluebird and a rescued Cassin's Auklet. The previous highest year total of 295 has already been surpassed.
End of Month Total - 297 species.

October 2018
Another excellent month with the highlight potentially the City's first confirmed Blue-headed Vireo, pending CRBC evaluation.  Other highlights included Sandhill Crane, Philadephia Vireo and Lewis's Woodpecker. This is the highest total ending October ever and only two behind the highest annual total ever.
End of Month Total - 293 species.

September 2018
Typically the biggest month of the fall for additions, September 2018 was no exception with 18 species added. Landbird passerienes were among the highlights including Green-tailed Towhee, first since 2010; Calliope Hummingbird, first since 2011; Gray Catbird, Black-throated Sparrow and Blue Grosbeak among other highlights.
End of Month Total - 280 species.

August 2018
Additions for this month included typical early fall species on the ocean and the land. Highlight for the month was White-breasted Nuthatch; the first in the CIty since 2012.
End of Month Total - 262 species.

July 2018
Four species were added this month with the highlight being the return of the Parakeet Auklet for the third year in a row. A Semi-palmated Sandpiper was the first in six or so years while a Tufted Puffin was the first from shore since 2011. Least Terns rounded out the list for the month.
End of Month Total - 254 species.

June 2018
Five species were added to the cumulative list this month bringing the total to 250 for the year, the highest ever total by the end of June. Added species this month had an eastern feel and included, Common Tern, Eastern Kingbird, Lawrence's Goldfinch, Magnolia Warbler and Northern Parula.
End of Month Total - 250 species.

May 2018
Migrants continued to move through in May including a number of irregular San Francisco species. Highlights included Fork-tailed Storm Petrel, Brown Booby and White-faced Ibis. The first Dusky Flycatcher in six years was found at Candlestick Point. Phainopepla showed up in the Presidio as did an Evening Grosbeak later in the month.
End of Month Total: 245 species.

April 2018
Spring migrants continued to show up in April including typical flycatchers, grosbeaks and buntings. Early Elegant Terns have beceome standard the last few years. Surprises included a singing Black-throated Green Warbler at Stow Lake, a daytime Long-eared Owl on Mount Davidson and a Pileated Woodpecker at Marina Green, this species becoming a little more regular in spring.
End of Month Total: 230 species.

March 2018
As expected the main push of spring migrants started showing up including Pigeon Guillemots , Caspian Terns, Warbling Vireos, Hooded Orioles etc. Some of the species highlights included a Hammond's Flycatcher in early March in the Arboretum in Golden Gate Park, Tropical Kingbird in the Outer Sunset, the continuing presence of California Thrasher, A Townsends Solitaire on Mount Davidson and a Tennessee Warbler on Sutro Tower.
End of Month Total - 211 species, 11 ahead of March 2017 total

February 2018
The definite highlight for the month was the first City and County record of Broad-billed Hummingbird found coming to a feeder in the outer Richmond district of San Francisco. The bird remained until March 19th and seen by many appreciative obervers. Many thanks to the finder and her neighbors for allowing so many to see this bird.  Other highlights included Yellow-bellied Sapsucker in McClaren Park and Black & White Warbler being refound in the Golden Gate Arboretum.
End of Month Total - 194 species

January 2018
Highlights for the month included the returning Eastern Phoebe, now in its third winter. a large easterly flow Jan 13 and 14th brought many waterfowl to the coast including Ross's and Snow Geese, Canvasback, Redhead and many other duck species. The Ridgeway's Rail continued at Heron's Head End of Month Total - 189