Seasonal Bird Movements in North-Central Texas

The seasons that the authors have outlined are based primarily on the general habits of bird movements within the study area. The nesting season for most birds in North-central Texas is mid-May through July. Naturally, some birds will begin nesting in April and a few birds will be migrating in July. The windows of time outlined here are only meant as a general barometer for understanding the seasonal habits of most of the region’s birds.

Spring - March is perhaps the most peculiar month of the NC-Texas year. Although generally a quiet time for birds, some migrant shorebirds begin to move. By April, most hawks and shorebirds are on the move and passerine migration begins in earnest. The first week in May is the heaviest for Spring migration in general.

Summer - By mid-May there are still some late migrants passing through but most nesters in North-central Texas have already found their new homes. In June there is little long-range movement by the area’s birds. During July, several birds began some post-nesting movement and a few begin their true migration.

Fall - Fall migration for birds in this area stretch out over a much greater window of time than spring migration. Much of the migrant bird life begin fall migration as early as August- particularly the shorebirds and hummingbirds. By October, some waders, hawks, ducks, and eventually sparrows join the migration while the shorebird migration closes.

Winter – November begins to see the largest arrival of sparrows and the first arrival of juncos. Some wintering hawks arrive almost daily. Ducks continue moving into the area. By Thanksgiving, many of the area’s gulls are arriving, and most of the blackbirds begin flocking at this time. The last to arrive are the longspurs in December.

The map of the following area zones better defines how the checklist views designators such as "Far West". This map is only general in nature, and there naturally is some overlap in bird distribution.