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E-mail: font@focusonnature.com
Phone: Toll-free in USA 1-888-721-3555
 or 302/529-1876


Birds of the
Cayman Islands

during Focus On Nature Tours

1999 thru 2014

during the months of February, 
April, May, June, and December

A Cayman Islands Bird List compiled by Armas Hill

In the upper right illustration is the "CAYMAN PARROT", Amazona leucocphala caymanensis, one of two subspecies in the Caymans. There are also other subspecies in Cuba and the Bahamas.
This parrot, also known now as the Rose-throated Parrot, is 1 of 87 species of birds cumulatively found during FONT tours in the Cayman Islands.   


GC:  on Grand Cayman Island
:   on Little Cayman Island

(i): introduced species
(t): a globally threatened or rare species, designated by Birdlife International
(t1): critical (t2): endangered (t3): vulnerable
(nt): a near-threatened species globally

(WIe): West Indian endemic to the Cayman Islands & Swan Island
(WIo): in the West Indies only in the Cayman Islands

Some local bird-names of the Cayman Islands follow the English names in the list.


A List & Photo Gallery of Caribbean Birds, in 2 Parts:
Part #1: Guineafowl to Hummingbirds     Part #2: Trogons to Buntings

Rare Birds of the Caribbean today & those that have gone extinct 

Upcoming FONT Birding & Nature Tours in the Caribbean


  1. Red Junglefowl  ______  GC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec  (feral on Grand Cayman Island) 
    Gallus gallus

  2. West Indian (or Black-billed) Whistling-Duck (t1)  ("Whistler")______ GC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec  (has also been called West Indian Tree Duck)
    Dendrocygna arborea  (monotypic)
    (an incredible 250 birds in Jun 2000, then even more, over 300 birds, in Feb 2001; nearly 200 birds in Feb 2006, and again over 300 birds in Dec 2010)

  3. Blue-winged Teal ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,dec
    Anas discors 
    (many (hundreds) on ponds on both Grand & Little Cayman Is. in Feb 2001)

  4. Baikal Teal ______ LC  feb
    Anas formosa 
    (Inexplicably one male was in a flock of Blue-winged Teal, on Feb 24, 2001, on a pond on Little Cayman Island, a small, remote place with few people. The behavior of the Baikal Teal was the same as that of the Blue-winged Teal (as a wary, wild bird). The Feb 2001 Baikal Teal was not banded. It was photographed. As far as we know, there was no previous record of this species in the West Indies. The species in Asia has been known to wander on occasion to the south beyond its normal range. It has occurred in North America, particularly Alaska, casually. The Feb 2001 Little Cayman bird may have joined with Blue-winged Teal in western North America and migrated south with them. Conversely, it should be noted, as well, that Baikal Teals have occurred in North America as escapes.)  

  5. Lesser Scaup  ______  GC dec
    Aythya affinis

  6. Pied-billed Grebe  ("Diving Dapper")  _____GC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Podilymbus podiceps antillarum

  7. White Ibis ______ GC  jun
    Eudocimus albus 

  8. Green Heron  ("Mary Perk")______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec  (was for a time considered conspecific with the nearly-cosmopolitan Striated Heron, and was then called Green-backed Heron
    Butorides virescens maculata

  9. Western Cattle Egret ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,dec
    Bubulcus ibis  

  10. Great Blue Heron ______ GC,LC  feb,jun,dec
    Ardea h. herodias

  11. Great Egret ______ GC,LC feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Casmerodius (has beenr Ardea) alba egretta

  12. Snowy Egret  ("White Gauldin") ______ GC,LC feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    (formerly Leucophoyx) thula brewsteri

  13. Little Blue Heron ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    (formerly Florida) caerulea  (monotypic)

  14. Tricolored Heron ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    (formely Hydranassa) tricolor ruficollis

  15. Black-crowned Night-Heron  ______  GC  feb
    Nycticorax nycticorax hoactli

  16. Yellow-crowned Night-Heron  ("Crab-catcher")______ GC,LC  feb,jun,dec
    Nyctanassa violacea bancrofti 
    (the single member of its genus)

  17. Least Bittern ______ GC apr/may,jun,dec
    Ixobrychus e. exilis

  18. White-tailed Tropicbird  ("Boatswain Bird") ______ GC LC  feb,apr/may
    Phaethon lepturus catesbyi 

  19. Magnificent Frigatebird ______ GC,LC feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Fregata magnificens 
    (now said to be monotypic)
    (including males with inflated red sacs at breeding colony)
  20. Brown Pelican ______ GC  feb,dec
    Pelecanus o. occidentalis

  21. Red-footed Booby ______ GC LC  feb
    Sula sula 
    (both light & dark morphs at colony, adults & young) 

  22. Peregrine Falcon  ______  GC dec
    Falco peregrinus

  23. Merlin ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may
    Falco c. columbarius

  24. American Kestrel  ("Killyhawk") ______GC,LC  feb
    Falco sparverius sparveroides 
    (this subspecies is also a resident of Cuba & the southern Bahamas) 

  25. Osprey  ("Fish Hawk") ______ GC LC  feb
    Pandion haliaetus 
    (the single member of its genus)
    2 subspecies occur in the Caribbean: P. h. ridgwayi & P. h. carolinensis 

  26. Northern Harrier  ______  GC dec
    Circus (cyaneus) hudsonius

  27. King Rail  ______  GC dec
    Rallus elegans
    (one found in a small marsh with high reeds, on Grand Cayman on Dec 2, 2010 - a vagrant) 

  28. Purple Gallinule ______ GC  apr/may,jun
    Porphyrula martinica 

  29. Common Gallinule  ("Red Seal Coot") ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Gallinula chloropus cerceris

  30. American Coot ______ GC LC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Fulica a. americana 

  31. Black-bellied Plover ______ GC feb,jun,dec  (also called Grey Plover
    Pluvialis squatarola cynosurae

  32. Semipalmated Plover ______ GC feb,jun
    Charadrius semipalmatus 

  33. Wilson's (or Thick-billed) Plover ______ GC  feb
    Charadrius wilsonia rufinucha 
    (resident subspecies in the Caribbean)
    (this species uncommon in the Caymans)

  34. Killdeer ______  LC  feb
    Charadrius v. vociferus 
    (breeder in North America that winters in the Caribbean) 

  35. Black-necked Stilt  ("Telltale") ______ GC,LC feb,apr/may,jun,dec  
    Himantopus mexicanus

    The Black-necked Stilt has been said by some to be conspecific with Black-winged Stilt of the Old World.

  36. Greater Yellowlegs ______ GC LC  feb,dec
    Tringa melanoleuca 

  37. Lesser Yellowlegs ______ GC,LC feb,dec
    Tringa flavipes 

  38. Solitary Sandpiper ______ GC feb,apr/may
    Tringa s. solitaria

  39. Spotted Sandpiper ______ GC LC  feb,apr/may,dec
    Actitis macularia 

  40. Willet ("Laughing Jack") ______ GC LC  feb
    (formerly Catoptrophorus) s. semipalmatus

  41. Ruddy Turnstone ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may
    Arenaria interpres morinella

  42. Wilson's Snipe ______ GC  feb   
    Gallinago delicata  (monotypic) 

    The Wilson's Snipe was considered part of the Common Snipe of the Palearctic, Gallinago gallinago.  

  43. Semipalmated Sandpiper ______ LC  feb
    Calidris pusilla 

  44. Least Sandpiper ______ GC,LC  feb
    Calidris minutilla 

  45. Laughing Gull ______ GC  jun
    (formerly Larus) a. atricilla

  46. Gull-billed Tern  ______  GC dec
    Gelochelidon nilotica aranea

  47. Least Tern  ("Egg Bird") ______ GC  apr/may,jun
    (formerly Sterna) a. antillarum

  48. Royal Tern ______ GC  feb,apr/may,jun
    (formerly Sterna) m. maxima

  49. Feral (or Rock) Pigeon (i) ______ GC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Columba livea

  50. White-crowned Pigeon ______ GC  feb,apr/may,jun
    (formerly Columba) leucocephala  (monotypic)

  51. Eurasian Collared Dove (i)  ______  GC dec
    Streptopelia decaocto

  52. Zenaida Dove ______ GC LC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Zenaida aurita zenaida 
    (resident subspecies of the northern Caribbean)

  53. White-winged Dove ______ GC feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Zenaida a. asiatica

  54. Common Ground Dove ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Columbina passerina insularis 
    (this subspecies of the Caymans, Cuba, and Hispaniola)

  55. Caribbean (or White-fronted) Dove ______ GC  feb,apr/may
    Leptotila jamaicensis collaris 
    (this subspecies endemic to the Cayman Islands)

  56. Rose-throated Amazon (or Parrot) (nt) ______ GC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec  (also called Cuban Amazon (or Parrot), or Bahama Amazon (or Parrot))
    Amazona leucocephala caymanensis 
    (on Grand Cayman Is., where it's an endemic subspecies) (Another subspecies occurs in the Caymans, A. l. hesterna, endemic to Cayman Brac Island.) 

  57. Monk Parakeet (i) ______ GC  feb
    Myiopsitta monachus

  58. Mangrove Cuckoo  ("Rain Bird") ______ GC feb,apr/may,jun
    Coccyzus minor 
    (now said to be monotypic)

  59. Smooth-billed Ani  ("Old Black Arnold")______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Crotophaga ani 

  60. American Barn Owl ______ GC  apr/may,dec
    Tyto f. furcata 
    (this subspecies of the Caymans, Cuba, and Jamaica)

    The American Barn Owl has been part of the Barn Owl of Eurasia & Africa, Tyto alba.
    But Tyto furcata is a heavier bird, with a larger and stouter head and body, and with much more powerful talons.

  61. Antillean Nighthawk  ("Rickery-Dick") ______ GC apr/may,jun
    Chordeiles g. gundlachii

  62. Eastern Whip-poor-will  ______  GC dec
    (formerly Caprimulgus) vociferus

    An Eastern Whip-poor-will was seen at dusk on December 2, 2010 during a FONT tour; a rare sighting on Grand Cayman.

  63. Belted Kingfisher  ("Kingfisherman") ______ GC,LC feb,dec 
    Megaceryle (formerly Ceryle) alcyon  (monotypic)

  64. "Yellow-shafted " Northern Flicker ("Black-Heart") ______ GC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Colaptes auratus gundlachi 
    (on Grand Cayman Is., where it's an endemic subspecies)

  65. West Indian Woodpecker  ("Red-Head") ______ GC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Melanerpes superciliaris caymanensis 
    (on Grand Cayman Is., where it's an endemic subspecies)

  66. Yellow-bellied Sapsucker ______ GC  feb 
    Sphyrapicus varius 

  67. Gray Kingbird ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,jun
    Tyrannus d. dominicensis 
    (one seen on Little Cayman Is. Feb 24, 2001 - an early arrival)

  68. Loggerhead Kingbird  ("Tom Fighter") ______ GC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Tyrannus caudifasciatus caymanensis 
    (this subspecies endemic to the Cayman Islands)

  69. LaSagra's Flycatcher  ("Tom Fool") ______ GC feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Myiarchus s. sagrae 
    (this subspecies of the Caymans & Cuba)

  70. Eastern Wood-Pewee ______ GC  apr/may,dec
    Contopus virens 

  71. Caribbean Elaenia  ("Top Knot Judas") ______ GC,LC feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Elaenia martinica caymanensis 
    (this subspecies endemic to the Cayman Islands)

  72. Thick-billed Vireo  ("Shear-Bark") ______ GC  feb,apr/may,jun
    Vireo crassirostris alleni 
    (this subspecies endemic to the Cayman Islands)

  73. Black-whiskered Vireo ______ GC  feb
    Vireo a. altiloquus

    (one bird, heard & seen, at the north end of Grand Cayman Is. Feb 25, 2001; this species rare in the Caymans)  

  74. Yucatan Vireo (WIo)  ("Sweet Bridget") ______ GC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Vireo magister caymanensis 
    (on Grand Cayman Is., where it's an endemic subspecies; the only subspecies on an West Indian island, although 2 subspecies occur on islands off Belize & Honduras)

  75. Purple (or possibly Cuban) Martin ______ GC  apr/may  (both species could migrate thru the Caymans in the spring)   
    Progne s. subis

  76. Barn Swallow ______ GC LC   feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Hirundo rustica erythrogaster

  77. Northern Mockingbird  ("Nightingale") ______ GC,LC feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Mimus polyglottos orpheus 
    (resident subspecies of the Caribbean)

  78. Gray Catbird  ______ GC  feb
    Dumetella carolinensis 
    (monotypic, and the single member of its genus)

  79. Black-and-white Warbler ______ GC LC  feb,apr/may
    Mniotilta varia 
    (monotypic, and the single member of its genus)

  80. Northern Parula (Warbler) ______ GC LC  feb,dec
    Parula americana 

  81. Golden Warbler ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,jun  (considered distinct by some from the migratory Yellow Warbler, which breeds in North America & winters in the Caribbean, Dendroica aestiva)   
    Dendroica petechia eoa 
    (this resident subspecies in the Caymans & Jamaica)

  82. Yellow Warbler ______ GC,LC  feb
    Dendroica aestiva

  83. Black-throated Blue Warbler ______ GC  feb,dec
    Dendroica caerulescens cairnsi 

  84. Yellow-throated Warbler ______ GC LC  feb
    Dendroica dominica
     (3 subspecies occur in the Caribbean)

  85. Prairie Warbler ______ GC,LC  feb
    Dendroica discolor  
    (2 subspecies occur in the Caribbean) 

  86. Vitelline Warbler (nt) (WIe)  ("Chip Chip") ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Dendroica v. vitellina
    (on Grand Cayman Is., where it's an endemic subspecies)
    Dendroica vitellina crawfordi
    (on Little Cayman Is., where it's am endemic subspecies)

  87. "Myrtle" Yellow-rumped Warbler  ______  GC dec
    Dendroica c. coronata

  88. Palm Warbler ______ GC,LC  feb,dec
    Dendroica p. palmarum
    (apparently the most common bird on the Caymans in February; quite common in December too) 

  89. Ovenbird  ______  GC dec
    Seiurus aurocapillus

  90. Northern Waterthrush ______  GC,LC  feb
    (formerly Seiurus) noveboracensis  (now said to be monotypic) 

  91. Common Yellowthroat ______ LC
    Geothlypis t. trichas

  92. American Redstart ______ LC feb,apr/may,dec
    Setophaga ruticilla 
    (monotypic, and the single member of its genus) 

  93. Greater Antillean Grackle  ("Ching Ching") ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Quiscalus niger caymanensis 
    (on Grand Cayman Is., where it's an endemic subspecies)
    Quiscalus niger bangsi
    (on Little Cayman Is., where it's an endemic subspecies)

  94. Bananaquit ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Coereba flaveola sharpei
      (subspecies endemic to the Caymans) (In all, there are 41 subspecies throughout Latin America & the Caribbean. 24 of those subspecies are on islands in the Caribbean including some off the coasts of Mexico & Venezuela, & on Trinidad & Tobago.)  

  95. Western Spindalis ______ GC,LC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec  (formerly called (Western) Stripe-headed Tanager)
    Spindalis zena salvini  (on Grand Cayman Is., where it's an endemic subspecies)  (Other subspecies occur in the Bahamas, Cuba, and Cozumel Is., Mexico; in all, there are 5 subspecies.)

  96. Cuban Bullfinch  ("Black Sparrow") ______ GC  feb,apr/may,jun,dec
    Melopyrrha nigra taylori 
    (on Grand Cayman Is., where it's an endemic subspecies)

  97. Yellow-faced Grassquit ______  GC,LC  feb,jun,dec
    Tiaris o. olivaceus 
    (this subspecies of the Caymans, Cuba, and Jamaica)

Birds of the Caymans that are otherwise found in the West Indies exclusively (or primarily) in Cuba (and the Bahamas):

Cuban/Rose-throated Parrot

Northern (Yellow-shafted) Flicker

West Indian Woodpecker

LaSagra's Flycatcher

Thick-billed Vireo

Western Spindalis  

Cuban Bullfinch