Review List Species

Report Review List species and species new to the state to the New Jersey Bird Records Committee. The Records Committee maintains an “official” list of all birds known to have been seen in the state; it seeks details on birds that are seen for the first time in the state, and species that have been seen only a few times in the past, and it keeps an archive of these reports. The list of species for which documentation is requested is called the review list; the current list can be found on the State & Review Lists page.

Sample forms can be found here as a PDF file or here as a text file. This form is just a sample and is not required. Records should include a complete description of appearance, behavior, and vocalizations. Of particular value are photocopies of field notes taken during or immediately following the observation, photographs, and sound or video recordings. Reports can be sent via email to njbrcreport at gmail dot com or by U.S. Mail to:

Bill Boyle, NJBRC Secretary, 13 Strawberry Lane, Cape May, NJ 08204

Rare or Uncommon Birds

With advances in technology, telephone hotlines (Rare Bird Alerts) are a thing of the past. Listserves (email lists), text alerts, and eBird have taken over the distribution of information about rare or unusual birds. In addition to species on the State Review List, those that are not on the list but which are sought by birders,  should be reported by one of these channels.

Examples of such species are many, of course. Here are a few: “winter finches” (Crossbills, Evening and Pine Grobeaks, Redpolls), shearwaters seen from shore, Harlequin Ducks, eiders, eagles, godwits, phalaropes, jaegers, “white-winged” gulls, Roseate Tern, Sedge Wren, Golden-winged, Mourning, and Connecticut Warblers, Lark and Clay-colored Sparrows.

E-Mail Lists

Please note: There are two birding mailing lists in New Jersey: NJBIRDS and JerseyBirds. They have different functions.


NJBIRDS is an alert-only mailing list. If you join by subscribing to the list, you will receive an email each time a post is made to the list. Post include sightings of Review List species or other rare species.  You will not be able to post to the list, whether you are a member/subscriber or not, because it is moderated. Only the moderator can post messages. To report an extreme rarity for distribution on NJBIRDS, send e-mail to one or both of the moderators. NJBIRDS is sponsored by the NJ Bird Records Committee and hosted at Princeton University’s listserver,


JerseyBirds is a discussion list for sightings, trip reports, identification questions/answers, and any other birding topic of interest to New Jersey birders. All questions are welcome and anyone who subscribes to the list may post (send messages to all list members). Rarity announcements are welcome. The information should also be sent to the New Jersey Bird Records Committee if it is a Review List species. JerseyBirds is also hosted at Princeton University’s listserver,

When you join any birding discussion forum, group or list on the Internet, you are always sent information about the group, including how to join and leave, stop and start your mail, the group’s “netiquette,” and other important facts. Be sure to read and save that information.

Threatened and Endangered Species

Threatened and Endangered species have been determined by scientific studies to be at risk of disappearing from New Jersey unless given legal protection. The laws are administered by the State Department of Environmental Protection. Some species are in danger of complete extirpation and some are in danger of no longer nesting in the state. Examples: Many raptors, owls, and wetland and grassland species are endangered species.

A list of New Jersey Endangered Species is found at

Report Threatened/Endangered (T&E) species to the New Jersey Endangered and Nongame Species Program.

See for reporting procedures. Maps are required for all reports. E-mail reports are also acceptable. See for instructions.

North American Birds

In addition to reports of rarities and unusual species, other useful observations for more regularly occurring species should be directed to the Regional Editors of North American Birds. This journal is part of a long-running effort, almost entirely volunteer-based, to keep a permanent record of the most important observations by amateur birders throughout North America. The record takes the form of Field Notes columns compiled by an Editor with in-depth knowledge of the area he or she covers.Examples: Unusually high or low counts of migrants; dates and composition of major waves of migrants and possible weather influences; first/peak/last dates for migrants; unusual locations for species more regular elsewhere in the state; irruptions; breeding success of scarce species; range expansions and contractions; and long-term trends you have noticed. For more guidance, pay careful attention to reports published in North American Birds for several seasons, and consult the appropriate Regional Editor for your area.You should always try to organize your report in proper taxonomic (checklist) order. Photographs (preferably digital) of interesting species are most welcome; always include date, location, and photographer’s name with submissions.

North American Birds Hudson-Delaware Region Editors as of Jan 2009:

  • Robert O. Paxton, 460 Riverside Drive, Apt. 72, New York, NY 10027. E-Mail,
  • Frank Rohrbacher, 5 Neva Court, Wilmington, Delaware 19810. E-Mail,
  • Spring: Richard R. Veit, Department of Biology, College of Staten Island, 2800 Victory Boulevard, Staten Island, NY 10314. E-Mail,

Subscription information for North American Birds:

Information on reviewed rare bird records in New Jersey.