INTRODUCTION TO SAINT LUCIA BIRDS

Saint Lucia is blessed with a bounty of indigenous fauna and flora. Our landscapes: hills, valleys, wetlands, dry lands and coat lines creates opportunities for bird species to thrive. St. Lucia houses approximately 176 bird species. 

Endemic Birds of St. Lucia

Our national bird, the Saint Lucia Parrot (Amazona versicolor), unique only to Saint Lucia, represents our island nation and its spectacular natural beauty to the world. This bird may well stand for our nation’s resilience and ability to stand up against adversity having recovered from dangerously low population numbers in the early 1980’s. The Saint Lucia Parrot is not the only endemic bird to the island. To date, it is only one of six species that are identified as unique to Saint Lucia. The other endemics are the St. Lucia Pewee (Contopus oberi), St. Lucia Warbler (Dendroica delicate) St. Lucia Oriole (Icterus laudabilis), St. Lucia Black Finch (Melonospiza richardsoni), Semper’s Warbler (Leucopeza samperi).

This number already gives Saint Lucia the distinction of having the highest number of endemic birds amongst the islands of the Eastern Caribbean. There are yet other potential species which may one day join the ranks of birds recognized as distinctly Saint Lucian when the conservation biologists and geneticists turn their attention to them.

Regional Endemic Birds in St. Lucia Species

Saint Lucian avifauna also includes a number of regional endemics including our own race of the White breasted Thrasher, Rufous Nightjar and House Wren. These are our gems to treasure amongst approximately 50 resident species which are attractive to birdwatchers local and foreign alike.

Migrant Birds Spices in St. Lucia

The migrant birds also constitute an enriching and yet transient element to Saint Lucia’s avifauna biodiversity. For the fortunate few who are aware of Saint Lucia’s “native” birds, the migratory birds add an interesting and somewhat mysterious element to our wildlife. Their stopover appearances around home gardens, shorelines or water treatment ponds during their southbound journeys from North America to the Caribbean and beyond has prompted the occasional curious phone call to the Forestry Department by individuals seeking to identify them.

Far from being considered a foreign element, such migratory birds should be regarded as an indigenous part of St. Lucia’s wildlife and appreciated as such. Very few Saint Lucians are aware of the swallows, sandpipers, warblers and the wild ducks that journey over thousands of miles from their summer breeding range to our shores to escape the cold northern winters.

Many strictly associate such birds with North America or Europe and yet our local names such as “canard sauvage” for the wild ducks, and the various “becassine” (sandpipers) seen along the beaches reflect our longstanding knowledge of these birds as part of our natural heritage. In the last century almost a hundred migratory species have been recorded in St. Lucia and therefore they constitute the majority of our avian diversity. Many of these birds are either fully protected or partially protected under the Wildlife Protection Act (1980).

Challenges

St. Lucia is no different from the rest of the region in its efforts at confronting the challenge of achieving sustainable development while securing its natural resources. However, sustainable development can only be achieved on the basis of informed decision making. Decision making under circumstances where there is a lack of data leads to an uninformed position and a lack of an awareness of possible options. This is particularly crucial to the decision making process relating to land use and land use change. In many instances, land use decisions seldom take into account the ecological value of such lands. Very often areas that are deemed suitable for “development” have been targeted because development interests and authorities generally perceive them to be “wasteland.” Regionally, this has resulted in reduced habitat for birds as mangroves and other forms of wild spaces are put into alternate land use.

Generally public interest in the wild spaces and wildlife of St. Lucia has waned and there is a need to rekindle it or else a generation will arise that will underestimate the value of these resources and jeopardize their existence. St. Lucia’s wildlife constitutes a rich part of the nation’s heritage and the loss of these resources can only serve to impoverish all.

This beautiful island is also called the “Helen of the West Indies”, for being the most beautiful island in the Caribbean chain of islands. This still hold true today and epitomizes everyone’s image of the Caribbean, lush tropical rainforest with an amazing array of unique and beautiful wildlife, birds, plants, flowers, butterflies.

This sun-drenched tropical island also possessed some spectacular coves and hidden beaches along its cost. 

The beautiful island scenery, botany, geology, and history are of equal appeal

St. Lucia Birding Wildlife Ambassadors will give you an opportunity to visit the rain forest, beautiful coastal areas and all the important bird areas on the island.

Learn more about St. Lucia Birds

Saint Lucia has an impressive variety of forest types in turn provides a rich diversity of habitats for numerous animal and plant species.  2537 known wildlife species

St. Lucia hosts five single-island endemics – the St. Lucia Parrot, St. Lucia Pewee, St. Lucia Oriole, St. Lucia Warbler, and St. Lucia Black Finch

  • Seeds bearing plants 1,291
  • Ferns 145
  • Mamals 17
  • Birds 176
  • Reptiles 19
  • Amphibians 5
  • Beetles 816
  • Dragonflies 26
  • Flies 134

List of Birds in St. Lucia

SPECIES, PHOTO, AND TEXT LIST, SAINT LUCIA, WEST INDIES

 Download our Birds guide and St. Lucia birds checklist

Endemic species:   BOLD      Endemic subspecies:  *

Lesser Antillean regional endemic: **

            Common — often seen or heard in appropriate habitat

            Uncommon — usually present; may not be seen or heard on every visit to appropriate habitat

            Rare — present in appropriate habitat, but only in small numbers; seldom seen or heard

            Very rare or Vagrant — very small numbers, or very sporadic occurrence; once in a while

            ? — status unknown

 

Common Name

Scientific Name

Abundance

Time of Year

  1.  

Pied-billed Grebe                        

Podilymbus podiceps

R

Oct.-March

  1.  

Greater Shearwater                    

Puffinus gravis

R

May-July

  1.  

Sooty Shearwater                        

Puffinus griseus

R

May-July

  1.  

Audubon's Shearwater               

Puffinus lherminieri

U

Resident

  1.  

Red-billed Tropicbird                  

Phaethon aethereus mesonauta

C

Residient

  1.  

White-tailed Tropicbird               

Phaethon lepturus catesbyi

C

Resident

  1.  

Brown Pelican                            

Pelecanus occidentalis occidentalis

R

Resident

  1.  

Masked Booby                           

Sula dactylatra dactylatra

R

Resident

  1.  

Red-footed Booby                      

Sula sula sula

U

resident

  1.  

Brown Booby                             

Sula leucogaster leucogaster

C

Resident

  1.  

Anhinga

Anhinga anhinga

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Magnificent Frigatebird              

Fregata magnificens

C

Resident

  1.  

Great Blue Heron                       

Ardea herodias occidentalis

U

Oct-April

  1.  

Great Egret                                

Ardea alba egretta

U

Sept-April

  1.  

Tricolored Heron                         

Egretta tricolor ruficollis (occidentalis)                                        

R

Resident

  1.  

Little Blue Heron                         

Egretta caerulea

C

Resident

  1.  

Snowy Egret                               

Egretta thula brewsteri

C

Resident

  1.  

Little Egret                                  

Egretta garzetta

R

Sept.-June

  1.  

Western Reef-Heron                    

Egretta gularis

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Cattle Egret                                 

Bubulcus ibis ibis

C

Resident

  1.  

Green Heron                               

Butorides virescens virescens

C

Resident

  1.  

Black-crowned Night-Heron        

Nycticorax nycticorax hoactli

U

Resident

  1.  

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron      

Nyctanassa violacea bancrofti

C

Resident

  1.  

Glossy Ibis                                   

Plegadis falcinellus

R

vagrant

  1.  

Roseate Spoonbill

Platalea ajaja

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Caribean Flamingo

Phoenicopterus ruber

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Fulvous Whistling-Duck               

Dendrocygna bicolor

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Black-bellied Whistling-Duck       

Dendrocygna autumnalis

R

Vagrant

  1.  

American Wigeon                        

Anas americana

R

Oct-April

  1.  

Gadwall

Anas strepera

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Green-winged Teal                     

Anas carolinensis

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Northern Pintail                           

Anas acuta

R

Sept-April

  1.  

Blue-winged Teal                        

Anas discors

C

Oct-April

  1.  

Northern Shoveler                        

Anas clypeata

R

Oct-May

  1.  

Ring-necked Duck                       

Aythya collaris

R

vagrant

  1.  

Lesser Scaup                              

Aythya affinis

R

Nov-March

  1.  

Masked Duck                              

Nomonyx dominica

U

resident

  1.  

Ruddy Duck                                

Oxyura jamaicensis jamaicensis

R

vagrant

  1.  

Osprey

Pandion haliaetus ridgwayi

U

Sept-April (non-resident spp)

  1.  

Northern Harrier                          

Circus cyaneus

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Common Black-Hawk                   

Buteogallus anthracinus anthracinus

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Broad-winged Hawk                    

Buteo platypterus rivierei

C

Resident

  1.  

Red-tailed Hawk                          

Buteo jamaicensis

R

vagrant

  1.  

American Kestrel                         

Falco sparverius caribaearum

C

Resident

  1.  

Merlin

Falco columbarius columbarius

U

Oct-March

  1.  

Peregrine Falcon                         

Falco peregrinus

R

Oct-April

  1.  

Sora                                             

Porzana carolina

C

Resident

  1.  

Purple Gallinule                           

Porphyrio martinica

R

Resident

  1.  

Common Moorhen                       

Gallinula chloropus cerceris

C

Resident

  1.  

Caribbean Coot                           

Fulica caribaea

R

Resident

  1.  

American Oystercatcher               

Haematopus palliates

U

Resident

  1.  

Black-necked Stilt                        

Himantopus mexicanus mexicanus

U

March-Oct

  1.  

American Golden-Plover              

Pluvialis dominica

R

Aug-Nov

  1.  

Black-bellied Plover                     

Pluvialis squatarola

C

Aug-May

  1.  

Semipalmated Plover                  

Charadrius semipalmatus

C

Aug-May

Sept-Oct

  1.  

Killdeer

Charadrius vociferous vociferous

U

Sept-March

  1.  

Collared Plover                            

Charadrius collaris

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Wilson's Snipe                              

Gallinago delicata

R

 

  1.  

Short-billed Dowitcher                 

Limnodromus griseus

 

Aug-April

  1.  

Hudsonian Godwit                       

Limosa haemastica

R

Sept-Oct

  1.  

Whimbrel

Numenius phaeopus

R

Sept-May

  1.  

Spotted Sandpiper                       

Actitis macularius

C

Aug-May

  1.  

Solitary Sandpiper                      

Tringa solitaria

C

Sept-Oct

Nov-May

  1.  

Greater Yellowlegs                     

Tringa melanoleuca

C

Aug-Oct

Nov-May

  1.  

Willet                                          

Tringa semipalmata semipalmata

R

Aug-Nov

  1.  

Lesser Yellowlegs                      

Tringa flavipes

C

Aug-Oct

March-May

  1.  

Ruddy Turnstone                        

Arenaria interpres morinella

C

Aug-May

  1.  

Red Knot                                    

Calidris canutus

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Sanderling

Calidris alba

C

Sept-Oct

March-April

  1.  

Semipalmated Sandpiper          

Calidris pusilla

C

Aug-May

  1.  

Western Sandpiper                    

Calidris mauri

U

Sept-march

  1.  

Least Sandpiper                        

Calidris minutilla

U

Aug-Oct

Nov-march

  1.  

White-rumped Sandpiper          

Calidris fuscicollis

R

Aug-Oct

March-April

  1.  

Baird's Sandpiper                      

Calidris bairdii

R

Sept-Oct

March-April

  1.  

Pectoral Sandpiper                    

Calidris melanotos

U

Aug -Nov

  1.  

Stilt Sandpiper                           

Calidris himantopus

U

Aug-Nov

  1.  

Buff-breasted Sandpiper            

Tryngites subruficollis

R

Sept-Nov

April

  1.  

Ruff

Philomachus pugnax

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Ring-billed Gull                           

Larus delawarensis

R

Resident

  1.  

Black-headed Gull                      

Larus ridibundus

U

Vagrant

  1.  

Laughing Gull                             

Larus atricilla atricilla

C

April-Sept

  1.  

Black-legged Kittiwake               

Rissa tridactyla

R

Dec-March

  1.  

Brown Noddy                             

Anous stolidus stolidus

C

Resident

  1.  

Sooty Tern                                  

Onychoprion fuscatus fuscatus

C

May-Aug

  1.  

Bridled Tern                                

Onychoprion anaethetus recognitus

C

April-aug

  1.  

Least Tern                                  

Sternula antillarum antillarum

C

Sept-March

  1.  

Gull-billed Tern                          

Gelochelidon nilotica arenea

R

Oct-Aug

  1.  

Caspian Tern                              

Hydroprogne caspia

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Roseate Tern                             

Sterna dougallii dougallii

U

April-Sept

  1.  

Common Tern                            

Sterna hirundo hirundo

C

May-Oct

  1.  

Royal Tern                                 

Thalasseus maximus maximus

C

Oct-April

  1.  

Sandwich Tern                            

Thalasseus sandvicensis acuflavidus

R

Oct-March

  1.  

Pomarine Jaeger                        

Stercorarius pomarinus

U

 

  1.  

Rock Pigeon                               

Columba livia livia

C

Resident

  1.  

White-crowned Pigeon                

Patagioenas leucocephala

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Scaly-naped Pigeon                   

Patagioenas squamosa

C

Resident

  1.  

Eurasian Collared-Dove

Streptopelia decaocto

R

Resident

  1.  

Eared Dove                                

Zenaida auriculata rubripes

U

Resident

  1.  

Zenaida Dove                            

Zenaida aurita aurita

C

Resident

  1.  

Common Ground-Dove              

Columbina passerina antillarum

C

Resident

  1.  

Bridled Quail-Dove                     

Geotrygon mystacea

U

Resident

  1.  

Ruddy Quail-Dove                       

Geotrygon montana martinica **

C

Resident

  1.  

St. Lucia Parrot                  

Amazona versicolor

U

Resident

  1.  

Yellow-billed Cuckoo                  

Coccyzus americanus

R

Sept-Oct

March-April

  1.  

Mangrove Cuckoo                      

Coccyzus minor

C

Resident

  1.  

Smooth-billed Ani                       

Crotophaga ani

R

Resident

  1.  

Common Nighthawk                   

Chordeiles minor

 

Resident

  1.  

Rufous Nightjar                           

Caprimulgus rufus otiosus *

R

Resident

  1.  

Black Swift                                   

Cypseloides niger

U

April-sept

  1.  

Lesser Antillean Swift                 

Chaetura martinica **

C

Resident

  1.  

Alpine Swift                                 

Tachymarptis melba

R

vagrant

  1.  

Purple-throated Carib                  

Eulampis jugularis **

C

Resident

  1.  

Green-throated Carib                  

Eulampis holosericeus holosericeus

C

Resident

  1.  

Antillean Crested Hummingbird        

Orthorhyncus cristatus exilis

C

Resident

  1.  

Belted Kingfisher                         

Megaceryle alcyon

C

Resident

  1.  

Caribbean Elaenia                       

Elaenia martinica martinica **

C

Resident

  1.  

ST. LUCIA PEWEE               

Contopus oberi

C

Resident

  1.  

Gray Kingbird                               

Tyrannus dominicensis vorax

C

Resident

  1.  

Fork-tailed Flycatcher                  

Tyrannus savana savana

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Lesser Antillean Flycatcher          

Myiarchus oberi sanctaeluciae *

C

Resident

  1.  

Bank Swallow                               

Riparia riparia

C

Sep-Oct

April-May

  1.  

Caribbean Martin                          

Progne dominicensis

C

Resident

  1.  

Barn Swallow                               

Hirundo rustica erythrogaster

C

Sept.-Oct

April May

  1.  

Cliff Swallow                                 

Petrochelidon pyrrhonota

U

Aug-Dec

March-May

  1.  

Cave Swallow                               

Petrochelidon fulva

U

Vagrant

  1.  

House Wren                                 

Troglodytes aedon mesoleucus *

U

Resident

  1.  

Tropical Mockingbird                    

Mimus gilvus antillarum

C

Resident

  1.  

White-breasted Thrasher             

Ramphocinclus brachyurus sanctaeluciae *

U

Resident

  1.  

Gray Trembler                              

Cinclocerthia gutturalis macrorhyncha *

C

Resident

  1.  

Brown Trembler                            

Cinclocerthia ruficauda

R

 

  1.  

Scaly-breasted Thrasher              

Allenia fusca schwartzi *

C

Resident

  1.  

Pearly-eyed Thrasher                   

Margarops fuscatus klinikowski *

C

Resident

  1.  

Forest Thrush                               

Cichlherminia lherminieri sanctaeluciae*

R

Resident

  1.  

Rufous-throated Solitaire             

Myadestes genibarbis sanctaeluciae *

U

Resident

  1.  

Bare-eyed Thrush                        

Turdus nudigenis nudigenis

C

Resident

  1.  

Yellow-throated Vireo                   

Vireo flavifrons

R

Sept-April

  1.  

Red-eyed Vireo                            

Vireo olivaceus

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Black-whiskered Vireo                 

Vireo altiloquus barbatulus

C

Resident

  1.  

Antillean Euphonia                       

Euphonia musica flavifrons

C

Resident

  1.  

Northern Parula                           

Parula americana

U

Aug-May

  1.  

Yellow Warbler                            

Dendroica petechia babad *

C

Resident

  1.  

Cape May Warbler                      

Dendroica tigrina

R

Oct-April

  1.  

Yellow-rumped Warbler  (Myrtle)               

Dendroica coronata

R

Nov-March

  1.  

St. Lucia Warbler                

Dendroica delicata

C

Resident

  1.  

Palm Warbler                               

Dendroica palmarum

 

 

  1.  

Blackpoll Warbler                         

Dendroica striata

U

Oct-Nov

  1.  

Black-and-white Warbler              

Mniotilta varia

R

Aug-April

  1.  

American Redstart                       

Setophaga ruticilla

U

Aug-May

  1.  

Prothonotary Warbler                   

Protonotaria citrea

R

Aug-March

  1.  

Ovenbird

Seiurus aurocapilla

R

Aug-May

  1.  

Northern Waterthrush                  

Seiurus noveboracensis

C

Sept-April

  1.  

Louisiana Waterthrush                 

Seiurus motacilla

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Semper's Warbler               

Leucopeza semperi t

?

Resident

  1.  

Canada Warbler                          

Wilsonia canadensis

 

 

  1.  

Bananaquit

Coereba flaveola martinicana  **

C

Resident

  1.  

Scarlet Tanager                          

Piranga olivacea

 

 

  1.  

Black-faced Grassquit                

Tiaris bicolor

C

Resident

  1.  

St. Lucia Black Finch         

Melanospiza richardsoni

C

Resident

  1.  

Lesser Antillean Bullfinch            

Loxigilla noctis sclateri *

C

Resident

  1.  

Grassland Yellow-Finch              

Sicalis luteola

R

Resident

  1.  

Lesser Antillean Saltator             

Saltator albicollis albicollis **

C

Resident

  1.  

Rose-breasted Grosbeak            

Pheucticus ludovicianus

R

Vagrant

  1.  

Bobolink                                      

Dolichonyx oryzivorus

R

Aug-Dec

  1.  

Carib Grackle                              

Quiscalus lugubris inflexirostris *

C

Resident

  1.  

Shiny Cowbird                             

Molothrus bonariensis minimus

C

Resident

  1.  

Baltimore Oriole                          

Icterus galbula

 

 

  1.  

St. Lucia Oriole                    

Icterus laudabilis

C

Resident

Facts
Saint Lucia has an impressive variety of forest types in turn provides a rich diversity of habitats for numerous animal and plant species. St. Lucia hosts five single-island endemics – the St. Lucia Parrot, St. Lucia Pewee, St. Lucia Oriole, St. Lucia Warbler, and St. Lucia Black Finch


Saint Lucian endemic species

Indigenous
species

Alien
species

Total
species

Seed-bearing plants

10

1,009

282+

1,291

Ferns

0

138

7

145

Mammals

1 (+1 subsp.)

10

7

17

Birds

5 (+13 subspp.)

132

2

176

Reptiles

7 (+5 subspp.)

13

6

19

Amphibians

1

2

3

5

Beetles

144

777+

39+

816

Dragonflies

0

26

0

26

Flies

19

?

?

134

Total species

187

>2,107

>346

2,537

 

Join the WildLife Ambassodors for fun and professionally guided birdwatching and natural history trips to the most diverse wildlife habitats, most scenic and pristine natural areas on the island. We provide the best bird watching, natural history, hiking and nature photography tour experience in Saint Lucia.
We take pride in being the wildlife ambassadors Our Guides are
the single most important aspect of Field Guides birding tours. Our experienced leaders are not only highly skilled birders
but also fun-loving people who genuinely enjoy guiding and

 

Join the St. Lucia Birding Wildlife Ambassadors for fun and professionally guided bird watching and natural history trips to the most diverse wildlife habitats, most scenic and pristine natural areas on the island. We provide the best bird watching, natural history, hiking and nature photography tour experience in Saint Lucia.

 

My love for nature began at a very tender age. Being first a cub, then a scout, and later becoming a cadet and a member of the Duke of Edinburgh award scheme was when the seed was planted. My experience with the above mentioned groups taught me how to push myself out of my comfort zone and to enjoy the outdoors.

Adams lives and breathes forests and wildlife; his first and only job was with the Saint Lucia Forestry Department where he started as a Forest Ranger in 1980 and where he retired as The Chief Forestry Officer in July 2018.

About us

Our Company

St. Lucia Birding & Wildlife Ambassadors offer professional and skilled guiding service throughout Saint Lucia. We provide up to date information, local expertise, including an opportunity to know about the history, the people, and the places and enjoy great local food and drinks. Moreover, we take great pleasure in bringing good company, fun, educational, having great conversation, and ensure a soul satisfying experience on our trips. 

We are established in response to the increasing request for high quality, professional and specialized expert guides in this niche tourism market. As our name suggests we organize and conduct wildlife tours including, bird watching, insects and reptiles tours; natural history tours, wildlife photography tours and specialize hiking tours

We can cater to a group of any size, minimum 1 to maximum 15 people. We offer customised tours for birders of all ages and skills, from a few hours of one-on-one bird identification lessons, basic techniques in the use of binoculars and spotting scopes. We will cater to your needs and the spectacular birds and other wildlife on St. Lucia you must see and enjoy. 

The company ethos is basically to ensure you enjoy the birds, wildlife, plants, rain forest, mangrove, and the tropical ecology of Saint Lucia. 

Our Mission is to go wild and enjoy the nature of Saint Lucia.

We try and place the emphasis on being experts naturalist guides equipped with premium Vortex spotting scopes and binoculars; state of the art technology and tools to facilitate the viewing of our wildlife in their natural environment, promoting responsible and sustainable tourism in Saint Lucia.
Our tour leaders who are all Saint Lucians each have over 15 years’ experience guiding and have accumulated a pretty extensive knowledge of flora fauna and avifauna of the Island.

We take pride in being the wildlife ambassadors of Saint Lucia.

Our Guides/trip leaders are the single most important aspect of our birding tours. Our experienced leaders are not only highly skilled birders but also fun-loving people who genuinely enjoy guiding and
take pride in making your tour an enjoyable, educational, pleasant and indelible experience.

 Our Leaders

About Us

Wildlife Ambassadors offer professional and skilled guiding service throughout Saint Lucia.

Phone: (1758) 518 8678 

Fax: (000) 000 0000 

Email: birding@stluciawildlife.com

Popular Tours

Some of our Birds