Re: [CALBIRDS] Any known Chukar sightings for Kings Co, please?
- Elias -- you may be confusing the "official county list" with county
record keeping. For example, Monterey County has an official county list
that includes all native birds, all vagrants that have acceptable
documentation, and the non-native exotics which have populations within
Monterey County that meet the CBRC definition of "establsihed" here.
However, Monterey has always kept track of all free-flying birds. If you
look at either "Monterey Birds" 2d ed (2003) or the Breeding Bird Atlas
(1993), you will find appendices detailing the facts about pheasants,
chukars, flamingos, parrots, and other non-native that do not qualify
for the official county list. There is no reduction in record keeping
for birds not on the county list.
The county list serves numerous purposes, including as a resource for
the public and governmental agencies to determine what birds have
occurred within the county and that meet long-established guidelines for
official checklists, going back to the AOU lists of the 1800s (and
maintained rigorously today).
Birders use official checklists as guidelines for their own listing
efforts and often birders use them to compare lists with each other.
Those interesting in birding the entire State enjoy comparing the
official lists in each county, and Joe Morlan has an entire website that
features this information.
If we started adding all the free-flying escapes from captivity on these
lists -- I have seen Hyacinth Macaw free-flying in San Francisco and a
peacock-pheasant "in the wild" in Monterey -- the lists would become
meaningless for these birder-friendly comparative purposes.
However, please understand that county record keepers continue to
compile information even about the most unlikely escapees. I have
details on all the flamingos that have escaped in Monterey County, going
back a half-century or more. I also maintain records on Chukars here.
Like Kings County, there is not and never has been an established
population. All records have proved to be from ranches raising and
releasing Chukars for hunting, or escapes from private aviculturalists.
County record keeper for Monterey County