Whether you’re an avid birder or simply interested in learning more about bird species, there are plenty of species you should know about and enjoy watching out for as they go about their daily lives.
Birds are beautiful and fascinating creatures, with over 8,000 species in existence all around the world. Birds play an important role in our ecosystem as pollinators and seed dispersers, so it’s important to learn about them and the roles they play in the environment that surrounds us.
They are an important part of nature, and if you spend much time outdoors, you’re bound to see some at some point. Unfortunately, not everyone understands bird species well enough to identify them or know what types of behavior to expect from the birds around them.
That’s why we put together this list of 10 popular bird species that you need to know about; it includes both common species that many people will encounter in their daily lives as well as rarer ones that people may never have heard of but which are still important to protect.
With that in mind, here are 10 of the most popular bird species you should know about, along with some interesting facts about each one of them!
Popular bird species
Waterfowl are types of bird species that typically live near water. Some common waterfowl include ducks, geese, and swans. These birds are generally web-footed, which helps them swim.
Waterfowl are often hunted for their meat and feathers. The Great White Heron is one species of waterfowl and can be found in Florida or the Caribbean. Ducks are another type of waterfowl; they have an omnivorous diet and are more social than other types of waterfowl.
There are many different types of swans and geese, but the most popular ones are the Mute Swan, Trumpeter Swan, and Tundra Swan. These birds are known for their beautiful white feathers and graceful necks. They typically live in cold climates and spend their winters in the south.
Swans and geese are often seen together in flocks, as they share similar habits and habitats. However, these birds have a few things that make them unique from one another. Geese tend to fly more than they swim while swans spend more time in the water. Geese also migrate long distances, but it is less common for swans to do so.
There are more than 50 species of warblers, and they’re found all over the world. Many of them are brightly colored, making them a favorite among birders. These little birds are known for their vocalizations, which can include a variety of chirps, trills, and even songs.
Warblers eat insects, so they’re often seen near trees and bushes. Some of the most popular warblers include the yellow warbler, American redstart, and black-throated green warbler.
The Wilson’s warbler is a North American subspecies that has been on the endangered list since 1967. The boreal forest in Canada is home to many populations of this beautiful little creature.
The Northern cardinal also belongs to this family, Cardinalidae, and it’s one of the most common backyard birds in America. Cardinals usually have bright orange or scarlet feathers with an olive-green back, but they’ve also been observed with gray feathers or streaked breasts instead.
There are many different types of owls, but some of the most popular include the great horned owl, the barn owl, and the snowy owl. Owls are nocturnal creatures, which means they are most active at night. They have excellent vision and hearing and use these senses to hunt for their prey.
Owls typically eat small mammals, such as mice or voles, but some larger owls will also prey on birds. One of the best-known predators is the great horned owl, which is capable of hunting large animals like deer.
The female usually hunts while perched in a tree during twilight hours before she leaves her nest to hunt for food for her young. The male does most of his hunting from elevated perches near his nest in order to protect it from predators like other raptors (birds that prey on other birds).
Buntings and finches
Buntings are small, plump songbirds with short necks and tails. They are found in woodlands, meadows, and fields. Finches are small, seed-eating birds with thick beaks.
They come in a variety of colors, including red, yellow, and green. The common American goldfinch is one of the most well-known finches. The American robin is another popular bunt; it has a distinctive white belly, black head and back, red breast, and brown wings that look like they have black stripes.
Robins spend their days on the ground or on low branches, where they hop around looking for food. They nest in crevices in trees, on cliff ledges, or under eaves at houses or barns.
Other common bird species
If you’re lucky enough to spot a killdeer, you’re in for a treat. These beautiful birds are native to North America and are easily identified by their striking plumage. They’re also incredibly interesting creatures, so here are five things you should know about them:
- Killdeers are known for their loud, distinctive calls. If you hear a killdeer crying out, it’s probably trying to warn other birds (or humans) of danger. Their calls can be more than 100 decibels — about as loud as heavy construction equipment!
- Some people think that the killdeer might be named after its call because the ‘kill’ part could come from the Scottish word kilderkin, which means barrel or cask.
- The deer part of the name is believed to have come from the Dutch word dijken, meaning dike or embankment.
- In Japan, this bird is called gama and is considered a symbol of good luck if seen during hunting season.
- There are four subspecies of this bird around the world, each with slightly different coloration based on where they live.
The European Starling is a small to medium-sized bird that is native to Europe, Asia, and North Africa. This bird has glossy black feathers with white spots and a long, slender beak.
The European Starling is a very adaptable bird and can be found in a variety of habitats including forests, meadows, and urban areas. This bird is also known for its vocal abilities and can imitate the sounds of other birds and animals. As one of the most successful introduced species in North America, it competes with native birds and spreads disease.
Another famous example is the Common Pheasant which lives throughout Eurasia. It’s a large size, heavy head plume feathers and brown coloration help distinguish it from other types of pheasants like Ring-necked Pheasants or Brown Pheasants.
The Tufted Titmouse is a small songbird that is native to North America. This little bird has a round body, a long tail, and a conspicuous tuft of feathers on its head. The Tufted Titmouse is grayish-brown with a white belly and rusty-orange flanks.
This bird is a common sight at backyard feeders and will often come right up to humans. The Tufted Titmouse is an important part of the ecosystem as it helps control insect populations.
If a Tufted Titmouse comes too close to your window, be careful not to disturb or scare it away. Your best bet is to move outside or open the window slightly so it can fly in for some food.
The Chipping Sparrow is a small sparrow with a brown-streaked body and a grayish brown cap. It is found in open woodlands, brushy areas, and gardens throughout North America.
The Chipping Sparrow feeds mainly on insects but will also eat seeds. The male Chipping Sparrows sing a repetitive trill that sounds like chip-chip-chip. Chipping Sparrows can often be seen at backyard feeders, where they eagerly snatch up sunflower seeds. They are common across the United States.
Northern Cardinals are native to North America and are one of the most familiar birds in the eastern United States. They have a bright red body, crest, face mask, wings, and tail feathers that make them unmistakable in the winter months when they gather together for mating rituals or before migration south for winter.
They range from Texas through Canada into Alaska (to Siberia). They can live for 12 years or more.
The House Wren is a small songbird with a brown back and buff underside. This little bird is often found near human habitation and can be seen perched on wire fences or clinging to tree bark.
The House Wren’s song is a series of high-pitched notes that can sound like teakettle, teakettle, teakettle. These birds are known for their nesting habits; they will build their nests in all sorts of places, including flowerpots, boots, and even mailboxes!
The male wrens provide more parental care to their offspring than their female counterparts. They may also offer protection to other birds’ eggs in their territory by using their own egg as a decoy when predators come around.