New York State
Ornithological Association

For the birders and birds of the Empire State

Listing and Reporting Bird Sightings

Reporting NYS / County List Reporting Get a Life List Patch

Black-necked Stilt, photo by Angus Wilson

Reporting Rare Birds

The New York State Avian Records Committee (NYSARC) evaluates all reports of unusual species or unexpected dates or locations. Each report is carefully reviewed before acceptance to the ornithological record.

For reporting instructions and forms (or online submission), see our NYSARC section.

Black-necked Stilt, photo by Angus Wilson

Reporting Not-So-Rare Birds

Birders are encouraged to submit their observations to the appropriate regional editor for inclusion in The Kingbird, NYSOA's quarterly journal. The Kingbird contains field observations, migration data, population and distributional changes, as reported by birders on a regional basis, from all over New York State. Field reports of rarities, often with photographs, are a regular feature.


Brown-headed Cowbird, photo by Brenda Best

Brown-headed Cowbird, photo by Brenda Best


To encourage birding in New York State, NYSOA sponsors two complementary programs, our "200" and "300" patches, and NY county listings.

County Lists

The County Listing project, created by Berna Lincoln in 1992, encourages birding all over the state. Only 2 birders so far have reported lists from all 62 counties, but two others have over 40 county lists and several more have over 20. Several folks have enough in a single county to qualify for the 200 patch. But this isn't just for the few high counters. It's for all who enjoy documenting their experiences this way. And county listing is more than just fun. Birders who keep track of their sightings and submit them to local bird clubs or eBird provide information that is used in a variety of ways that benefit birds and promote habitat conservation. Send us your state, region, and county life list totals each year!

For compilations of past reports submitted, or to submit your own report:
NYS County Listing page


State Life List Patches

NYSOA offers handsome patches for birders whose New York life list exceeds 200 and 300.

The purpose of the 200 and 300 patches is twofold: to encourage New York birders to bird their own state and to encourage out-of-staters to come here and bird New York. We love New York; birds love New York; New York is the place to bird!

Anyone, member or not, can attain a patch by spotting at least 200 species of birds in New York State. There is no time limit. Just send your list of birds, in checklist order of course, to:

Donald A.Windsor
PO Box 604
Norwich, NY 13815.

Our official New York State checklist is ideal, but other checklists or copies of them, can be submitted. Only birds already on NYSOA checklist count. The latest checklist is available on this website. There is no free lunch, so a nominal fee of $2.00 for NYSOA members and $3.00 for non-members is being charged to defray the cost of the '200' patches, and '300' patches are $5.00 (US funds only please).

This page last updated 9/26/12



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