Searchable Bird Sighting Database

Almost 300,000 records of birds in Delaware dating back to 1794

YOU CAN search this database

Comprehensive Database of Delaware Bird Sightings from Multiple Sources

Gene Hess created a database of bird sightings to use when he was writing the Birds of Delaware (Hess et al, Univ. of Pittsburg Press, 2000) and he has kept the database continuously updated.  It contains almost 300,000 records of 468 species, 8 subspecies, and 4 species pairs dating back as far as 1794.

He is now making this database available for you to search.  If you are doing research or are just curious about bird sightings in Delaware, submit your query below and Gene will respond with the results.

This database combines data from multiple sources and contains sightings not available anywhere else including older sightings not well represented on sources like eBird.  See the list of sources below.

Click here for sample PDF output.  Spreadsheet also available.  More detailed output avaialble on request.


Fill out and Submit this form to Query the Database

    * Required Field

    Your Name *

    Your Email *


    Species *

    Begin date (optional)

    End date (optional)

    Location (optional)

    Type of Search: *

    Output Desired (check one or both): *

    Additional Comments: (optional)


    Whenever a species is mentioned in one of these sources, it is entered as a record in the databae.

    • National and regional journals, including the Delaware Ornithologist "Passing Scene" articles
    • Unpublished data contributed by individuals
    • Museum specimens (limited, not all specimens from the Delaware Museum are entered)
    • Publicly available data from government agencies like USFWS and USGS
    • DE-Birds listserv from 1996
    • eBird alerts from 2020
    • Delaware Facebook Groups from 2021

    Volunteers are needed to help with data entry of the text files. It would make those data easily searchable.  Click here to email Gene if you are willing to help.