This fully bilingual (Korean and English) Birds Korea 2014 Checklist (posted in April 2014) is based on Version 4.1 of Gill & Donsker (downloaded in March 2014) and on Moores & Park (2009). It contains all species and subspecies of bird considered by Birds Korea to have been recorded up to and including March 2014 in the Republic of Korea, arranged in categories. A separate, less comprehensive checklist for the DPRK remains in preparation.
The Birds Korea Checklist in its present form was originally developed in 2009 by Nial Moores with extensive additional input from Park Jong-Gil. Subsequent versions of the Checklist continue to benefit greatly from comments and input from several Birds Koreans and experts. Thanks are given to all contributors and especially to Ha Jung Mun for work on the 2014 Checklist.
The Birds Korea 2014 Checklist contains more than a hundred revisions from the 2013 Checklist (Moores and Kim 2013). While many are changes in order and taxonomy published by Gill and Donsker (2014) and in global conservation status published by BirdLife International (2014), the majority are the result of new records and an improvement in understanding. Indeed, each version of the Checklist is a work-in-progress, based on ongoing literature review and review of online sources; discussion with experts; and on interpretation of available evidence. It is most likely that valuable information remains unpublished or unknown to us. It is also important to note here too that in the absence of a national rarities committee and with few published studies on population density or abundance known to us, all decisions on categories and status still remain the responsibility of the lead author.
Layout, formatting and links from the Checklist to other website materials have all been developed by Andreas Kim.
The suggested citation is: Moores, N. & A. Kim. 2014. The Birds Korea 2014 Checklist for the Republic of Korea. Accessed [date] at:
Birds Korea, April 2014
- BirdLife International. 2014. IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org/ in March /2014.
- Gill, F & D. Donsker (Eds). 2014. IOC World Bird List (v 4.1). doi : 10.14344/IOC.ML.4.1. Accessed in March 2014 at: http://www.worldbirdnames.org/
- Moores, N., Park J-G. 2009. The Birds Korea Checklist: 2009. Published online in August 2009. Accessed in March 2014 at: http://www.birdskorea.org/Birds/Checklist/BK-CL-Checklist-Aug-2009.shtml
- Moores, N. & A. Kim. 2013. The Birds Korea Checklist for the Republic of Korea: 2013. Accessed in March 2013 at: http://www.birdskorea.org/Birds/Checklist/BK-CL-Checklist-info-2013.shtml
- OSK (2009) Checklist of the birds of Korea. Seoul: Ornithological Society of Korea
Using The Checklist
Category One (Recent and Documented)
Species of bird (and their subspecies) recorded in the Republic of Korea since 1980, documented with identifiable photographs, sound recordings or specimens.
Category Two (Pre-1980 and Documented)
Species of bird (and their subspecies) recorded in the Republic of Korea before 1980, supported by photographs or specimens, which have not been recorded after 1980 with the same level of documentation.
Category Three (Incomplete Documentation)
Species of bird (and their subspecies) recorded in the Republic of Korea seen by multiple observers (including at least one observer with prior experience of the species), or seen on more than one date by an observer with prior experience of the species, unsupported by photographs or sound recordings.
Category Four (Incomplete Documentation)
Species of bird recorded in the Republic of Korea, either seen only by a single observer (with or without prior experience of that species) or seen by several observers without prior experience of the species, or heard by those with prior experience, unsupported by photographs or sound recordings.
Category Five (Established Exotics)
Species of bird recorded in the Republic of Korea that appear to have been introduced and are now widely established.
Category Six (Pending File)
Species reported by competent observers - in some cases supported by poor images or sound-recordings - for which inclusion or exclusion on the national list at this time requires further independent review.
The English name given for each species follows Gill & Donsker (2014), with the following exceptions and additional notes:
Birds Korea “Preferred Alternative” names are marked PA, e.g. Black Woodpigeon is preferred to Gill & Donsker’s Japanese Woodpigeon.
Names used previously in Birds Korea materials which are No Longer in use are marked NL, and these names are placed in brackets, e.g. (Kamchatka Gull).
Additional taxa still recognised by Birds Korea, but not yet by the IOC are denoted with an ●, e.g. Mongolian Gull Larus mongolicus, and the frontalis subspecies of Greater White-fronted Goose.
Finders of the first record of a species in Korea have the responsibility to create a Korean name and publish this name. Some names have yet to be coined and are left blank in the Checklist. In the case where two names are given, the first name is the one coined by the first-finder and preferred by Birds Korea.
Global Conservation Status (GCS)
Codes follow the IUCN and BirdLife International (2014):
With the addition of one further category:
|NR||=||Not-recognised as a valid taxon by either BirdLife International Fact Sheets (2014) or by Gill & Donsker (2014).|
Where data are insufficient under any of the headings, “DD” is used.
Status in the Republic of Korea (Status)
|P||=||Largely a passage migrant|
|S||=||Largely a summer visitor|
|W||=||Largely a winter visitor|
The above four letters are followed by numbers to indicate very approximate abundance:
|1||=||> 100,000 individuals/year|
|2||=||10,000 - 99,999 individuals/year|
|3||=||1,000 - 9,999 individuals/year|
|4||=||100 - 999 individuals/year|
|5||=||10 - 99 individuals/year|
|V1||=||Scarcely recorded, i.e. >10 records in total but <10 records/year|
|V2||=||Rarely recorded, i.e. <10 records in total by April 2014|
In many species, a combination of codes is used to indicate different abundance at different times of the year, e.g. P2,W3,SV2 = Between 10,000 and 99,999 individuals present during migration; between 1,000 and 9,999 individuals present in winter; and fewer than 10 records of the species in the summer months.
There are four codes used in total
|1||=||Confirmed breeding record in the Republic of Korea|
|2||=||Presumed breeding in the Republic of Korea|
|3||=||Historical breeding record (pre-1980, but not subsequently) in the Republic of Korea|