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GAP Analysis Predicted Distribution Map

Black-headed Grosbeak (Pheucticus melanocephalus)

Species Code: PHME

Click to enlarge Range map

= Core Habitat
= Marginal Habitat

Breeding Range Map
The green area shows the predicted habitats for breeding only. The habitats were identified using 1991 satellite imagery, Breeding Bird Atlas (BBA), other datasets and experts throughout the state, as part of the Washington Gap Analysis Project. Habitats used during non-breeding months and migratory rest-stops were not mapped.

Metadata (Data about data or how the map was made)

Click to enlarge distribution map

Map with Breeding Bird Atlas records

Other maps & Information:
  • Breeding Bird Atlas
  • NatureMapping observations
    during breeding season
  • NatureMapping observations
    throughout the year

This Grosbeak is common throughout lower elevations in hardwood forests or shrubby/hardwood habitats within coniferous forests, including riparian (along rivers or streams) corridors and patches of tall shrubs or hardwoods within conifers. In eastern Washington, it is found breeding in riparian growth throughout the steppe zones.

Core zones were those below the Silver Fir zone (west side) and below and including the Grand Fir zone (east side). The Interior Redcedar and Interior Western Hemlock zones were peripheral. In west-side zones and east-side zones from Grand Fir and up, good habitats were wooded parks, agriculture, freshwater/wetlands, forest openings and clearings, hardwood forest, and mixed forest; low-density development and conifer forests were adequate, except in the wettest zones (Sitka Spruce and Western Hemlock), where mid-to late-seral conifer forests were excluded. The Interior Douglas-fir zone was treated similarly to the Grand Fir zone, except that forest openings and clearings and non-irrigated agriculture were excluded. In steppe zones, water/wetlands, hardwood forests, mixed forests, and wooded parks were good; low-density development and conifer forests were adequate.

Two subspecies of the Black-headed Grosbeak breed in Washington, P.m.melanocephalus of eastern Washington and P.m.maculatus of Western Washington. Only a small number of hardwood trees are needed to support a Black-headed Grosbeak. In areas where hardwood trees dominate (such as Garry Oaks in Klickikat County) , this species can be quite common. Riparian (along rivers or streams) corridors in eastern Washington steppe zones are prime habitat for this species, where it can be one of the most abundant singing birds in some areas of the Palouse, for instance, along Union Flat Creek. In western Washington, it has probably benefited from conversion of conifer forests to hardwood second-growth due to logging practices. High-elevation records are rare, though one is known from Stevens Pass at about 4000 feet (King/Chelan Counties). At higher elevations where conifers dominate, this species becomes scarce or absent.

Translated from the Washington Gap Analysis Bird Volume by Uchenna Bright
Text edited by Gussie Litwer
Webpage designed by Dave Lester