IOC Naming Home ยป content uses English names suggested by International Ornithologist's Union (IOU, formerly International Ornithological Congress IOC) and available at Recently we changed all of our names to this format, rather than maintain two databases (although you can still see an alternate name by clicking "More Info" on the photo page). So we changed names like "Gray Jay" to "Grey Jay", and "Rock Pigeon" to "Common Pigeon", and "Yellow-crowned Night-Heron" to "Yellow-crowned Night Heron". A few changes were less intuitive: The "Black-bellied Plover" became the "Grey Plover", the "Snowy Plover" became the "Kentish Plover", and the "Rainbow Lorikeet" became the "Coconut Lorikeet".

Recently we added information from the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) Red List to our database. Now "More Info" shows the bird's status with values like "Least Concern" or "Endangered". Aside from the naming issues described above, we still find inconsistencies in these two database and scientific names.

To complicate things even further, birds are always being moved into different taxonimical families, as more scientific data, such as molecular DNA analysis, becomes available. Our site is arranged by taxonomical orders and families in many places (such as Song Birs/Passerines). So we always have a lot of work to do...

July 17, 2008: Web site updated to IOC database 1.6. The following changes were made:

Updated Barn Owl to Western Barn Owl
Updated Blacksmith Plover to Blacksmith Lapwing
Updated Blue Tit to Eurasian Blue Tit
Updated Cattle Egret to Western Cattle Egret
Updated Collared Redstart to Collared Whitestart
Updated Common Loon to Great Northern Loon
Updated Emerald Dove to Common Emerald Dove
Updated European Starling to Common Starling
Updated Fairy Penguin to Little Penguin
Updated Golden-breasted Woodpecker to Green-barred Woodpecker
Updated Great Egret to Western Great Egret
Updated Hooded Plover to Hooded Dotterel
Updated Jackass Penguin to African Penguin
Updated Javan Pond-Heron to Javan Pond Heron
Updated Many-colored Rush-Tyrant to Many-colored Rush Tyrant
Updated Marbled Teal to Marbled Duck
Updated Mountain Chat to Mountain Wheatear
Updated Osprey to Western Osprey
Updated Patagonian Sierra-Finch to Patagonian Sierra Finch
Updated Ruddy Ground-Dove to Ruddy Ground Dove
Updated Slaty-breasted Wood-Rail to Slaty-breasted Wood Rail
Updated Vitelline Masked-Weaver to Vitelline Masked Weaver
Updated White Pelican to American White Pelican
Updated White-cheeked Bulbul to Himalayan Bulbul
Updated Yellow Warbler to American Yellow Warbler
Updated Yellow-streaked Lory to Streaked Lory

IOU 2.5

Tom Friedel, editor 2.5 just installed includes the Blue-crowned Motmot five-way split and the Yellow-rumped Warbler split.