Restart Bird Identification Expert

What SHAPE was the bird you saw in North Carolina?

Black-bellied Whistling-Duck: Large, colorful duck with bright red bill, pink-red legs and feet. Shows white wing patch, black belly, reddish-brown breast, neck and back. Face, foreneck are gray, white eye ring. Feeds on aquatic plants, cultivated grains, seeds. Direct flight on rapid wing beats.
Fulvous Whistling-Duck: Large, long-legged, long-necked duck with dark brown back and white V-shaped rump patch. Head and underparts are buff to cinnamon with white throat and vent. The white-edged side and flank feathers form a striking border between sides and back. Tail is black with white undertail coverts.
Greater White-fronted Goose: This medium-sized goose has a dark-brown body and the underparts are barred and flecked with black. The belly and under tail coverts are white. The front of the face has a white patch and the bill is usually pink-orange. The legs are orange. It feeds on seeds, grain, grasses and berries. It has a steady direct flight with rapid wing beats. The sexes are similar.
Ross's Goose: Small, white goose with black primary feathers and stubby gray-based red-orange bill. Red-orange legs and feet. Eats mostly fresh grasses and grains, often in the company of Snow Geese. Rapid direct flight with strong wing beats. Flies in a V formation. North America's smallest goose.
Cackling Goose: This small to medium-sized goose has a mottled gray-brown body, black legs, tail, neck, head and face, with a white chin strap stretching from ear to ear and a white rump band. The bill is small and triangular. It eats a variety of plant species and parts, especially grasses, sedges, grain and berries. Strong deep wing beats. Sexes are similar; the male is larger.
Mute Swan: Aggressive bird, entirely white, orange bill with large black basal knob and naked black lores. Curved neck is often stained with pigments from iron or algae. Legs and feet are black. Feeds on aquatic plants collected from bottom. Direct flight with strong steady wing beats.
Trumpeter Swan: Largest swan in the world, completely white but with head and neck often stained rust-brown from contact with ferrous minerals in wetland soils. Bill, legs, and feet are black. Feeds on aquatic plants. Strong direct flight on steady wing beats. Flies in straight line or V formation.
Mottled Duck: Medium dabbling duck with dark brown mottled body, feathers usually show distinct multi-toned chevrons, buff-brown face and unmarked neck, darker crown and eye line. Speculum is blue-green bordered with black and fine white bars. Bill is bright yellow; legs and feet are orange.
Cinnamon Teal: This small duck has scaled dark brown upperparts, cinnamon-brown underparts, head and neck, red eyes, long dark bill and yellow-gray legs. White line divides green speculum and pale blue shoulder patch on wing. Female is brown-scaled overall with dull blue shoulder patch, dark eyes and pale edged upper mandible. Feeds on seeds and insects. Swift direct flight with rapid wing beats.
Greater Scaup: This large diving duck has a glossy green-black head, white sides and belly, black tail, neck and breast, barred gray flanks and back. The eyes are yellow and the bill is blue-gray with a black tip. The diet includes aquatic insects and plants. It has a rapid direct flight with strong, quick wing beats. The female is dull brown with a white patch on the face at base of bill.
Common Merganser: Large, sleek diving duck with black upperparts and white underparts. Head and upper neck are green-black with head crest usually not visible. Long, thin bill is bright red. Wings are black with extensive white patches. Feeds on fish, mollusks, crustaceans, insects and plants.
Masked Duck: Small stifftail duck with black-tipped blue bill and black mask with thin white eye-ring. Body is rufous-brown with black streaks on the back and sides; white wing patches are visible in flight. Feeds on aquatic plants, insects and crustaceans. Direct flight with rapid wing beats.
White-tailed Ptarmigan: Small grouse, mottled brown overall, white on wings, breast, belly, red eye comb, white-edged brown tail, legs covered with white feathers. It is the smallest of the ptarmigans, and the only one that nests south of Canada. Lives most of its life above timberline.
Pacific Loon: This medium-sized loon has a black-and-white checkered back and white underparts. It has a gray crown and nape, red eyes and a slender black bill. Iridescent throat patch can appear purple, green or black. Feeds mostly on fish, some crustaceans and insects. Flight is direct with rapid wing beats. Sexes are similar.
Eared Grebe: This small grebe has black upperparts, dark chestnut-brown flanks and white underparts. The head and neck are black. There are orange feathers on the face, the eyes are red, and the legs and feet are black. It feeds on aquatic insects and crustaceans. It has a direct flight with rapid wing beats. The sexes are similar in appearance.
Western Grebe: Large, long-necked grebe with dark gray upperparts, white underparts, gray sides and flanks. Lower face and front of neck are white; black cap extends below eye. Back of neck is black. Eyes are red. Bill is long, thin, and dull olive-yellow. Winter birds are duller gray and juveniles are light gray overall. Wings have white stripes visible in flight.
Clark's Grebe: Large grebe, gray-black upperparts, white underparts, and slender neck with white on front and black on back. White face, black cap extends nearly to red eyes. Bill is yellow-orange. Until the 1980's thought to be a pale morph of the Western Grebe. Direct flight on rapid wing beats.
Yellow-nosed Albatross: Pelagic albatross with pale gray head, neck, rump, black back, upperwings, white underparts and black margin around white underwings. Red-tipped black bill has yellow patch on upper mandible. Gray legs, feet. Glides and soars for hours with minor adjustments to wing position.
Herald Petrel: Medium petrel, three color morphs: light, intermediate, dark. Dark morph is dark gray overall, silver-gray to white base on underwing flight feathers. Light morph has white breast, belly and dark gray upperparts. Intermediate forms exist between light and dark morphs. Gray legs, feet.
Bermuda Petrel: Medium petrel, gray-brown upperparts shading to black on rump; white underparts except for dusky sides of upper breast. Base of tail has white band. White face, forehead. Black-brown cap goes to eyes. In flight shows black-gray upperwings, white underwings with black margins, tips.
Black-capped Petrel: Large petrel with white underparts, dark brown to black back and upper wings, black cap, and white collar (this field mark is missing in some birds). Tail is long, dark, and wedge-shaped; underwings show broad dark margins. Hooked bill is dark, legs are pink. High arcing flight.
Fea's Petrel: Medium petrel, gray-brown upperparts, white belly. White breast with partial gray-brown breast band. Wings bend back at the wrist, have a dark M pattern across upperwings and lower back. Underwings are mostly dark. White face, dark mask around eyes. Gray tail, pale uppertail coverts.
Bulwer's Petrel: This medium-sized petrel is dark brown overall with pale diagonal bars across secondary coverts. The long tail is usually held in a point; wedge shape visible when fanned. It has a black hooked bill and black legs and feet. Feeds on squid and small fish. It picks food from the surface while in flight. Makes a series of stiff flaps before each short twisting glide. Sexes are alike.
Cory's Shearwater: Large gray-brown shearwater, white underparts, pale yellow bill. Feeds at night on crustaceans and large sqiud it takes from the surface. Best identified by its relatively slow, languid flight compared to other shearwaters. Wings held downward. Soars on fixed wings if wind is up.
Cape Verde Shearwater: Large seabird with gray-brown upperparts, dark brown flight feathers, and white underparts. Light pink bill is fairly long and thin with a dark ring near the slightly hooked tip. The wings are long and the tail is medium in length. Flies with rapid stiff wing beats alternated with short glides.
White-faced Storm-Petrel: The only Atlantic storm-petrel with the combination of dark gray upperparts and white underparts with a dark cap and eyeline. Long black legs trail behind squared tail in flight. Webbing between toes is yellow. Alternates rapid, shallow wing beats with stiff-winged glides.
Band-rumped Storm-Petrel: This is a black-brown storm-petrel with gray-brown wing bars and a conspicuous white band across the rump and large, slightly notched tail. It has a black bill, legs and feet. It has a buoyant, zigzag flight, alternating several rapid wing beats. It feeds on invertebrates, small vertebrates and sometimes carrion from the water's surface. The sexes are similar.
White-tailed Tropicbird: This large white bird has a long black bar on upperwing coverts and outer primaries, black loral mask which extends through and past the eye, yellow-orange bill, white tail streamers, yellow legs and feet and black webbed toes. Feeds on fish and squid. Buoyant, graceful pigeon-like flight with fluttering wing strokes alternating with soaring glides. Sexes are similar.
Red-billed Tropicbird: This slender, white, gull-like seabird is the largest tropic bird. It has long white tail streamers, a white back that is finely barred in black, a black eye stripe curves that upward behind the eye, black primaries, and a red bill. Female resembles the male but is less tinged with red. Feeds on fish and squid. Direct, rapid flight; pigeon like, stiff, shallow wing beats.
Magnificent Frigatebird: Large black seabird, orange throat patch inflates into a huge bright red-orange balloon when in courtship display. Long bill is gray, hooked. Wings are long and narrow. Tail is forked; legs and feet are dark gray. Eats fish, crustaceans, jellyfish. High soaring flight.
Brown Booby: This large seabird is mostly dark brown with white under wing coverts, belly and vent. It has a blue-gray to yellow bill and yellow legs and feet. To acquire food, it plunge dives from 30 to 50 feet. It feeds on parrot fish, flatfish, mullets and other fish. It has alternating strong rapid wing beats and glides. The sexes are similar.
Northern Gannet: Very large seabird. White overall with black primaries and long pointed wings. Light buff-yellow wash on crown of head extending down nape may be visible. Bill, legs, and feet are gray. Dives for fish and squid. Alternates rapid wing beats with short glides. Soars to great heights.
Great Cormorant: Largest North American comorant. Black with bright yellow throat pouch bordered with white feathers. Expert swimmer, dives for fish, crustaceans. When wet holds wings in spread eagle position to dry. Strong direct flight with steady wing beats. Flies in V or straight line formation.
Roseate Spoonbill: Large ibis, pink body, white upper back, neck. Long bill, gray and spatulate. Head is bare and olive-green. Feeds while wading in shallow water, sweeping its bill back and forth. Sensitive nerve endings snap bill shut when prey is found. Alternates steady wing beats, short glides.
Swallow-tailed Kite: The largest of North America kites, has black upperparts which contrast with white head and underparts. In flight it shows long pointed wings with black flight feathers and white wing linings. Has a 15-16 inch-long black tail with deep fork. The neck, breast and belly are white.
Swainson's Hawk: Large hawk, dark brown upperparts, white throat, rufous upper breast, pale buff underparts. Tail is gray with faint bars, dark terminal band, and white trailing edge. Yellow legs, feet. Alternates series of powerful deep wing beats with long glides. Soars on thermals and updrafts.
Purple Gallinule: Medium, chicken-like marsh bird with purple-blue upperparts washed with iridescent green, deep blue underparts. Forehead is pale blue; bill is red and yellow-tipped. Undertail coverts are white. Legs are yellow with very long toes. The flight is labored and slow with dangling legs.
Limpkin: Large, unique marsh bird, dark brown body, white streaks on neck, back, wings, breast. Bill is slightly decurved. Neck and legs are long. Vaguely resembles an ibis. Feeds on freshwater snails, mussels, frogs, crustaceans and insects. Direct flight with quick upstrokes and slow downstrokes.
American Oystercatcher: Large shorebird with white underparts, brown upperparts, black hood, long, bright red-orange needle-shaped bill. White wing patches visible in flight. Yellow eyes surrounded by orange eye-rings. Legs and feet are pink. Feeds on mussels and other bivalves. Rapid direct flight.
Northern Lapwing: Large, unique plover with black breast, face, crown, and long upright head plumes; back is green-tinged purple and copper. Belly and sides are white, uppertail is white with a black tip, and undertail coverts are rich rufous-orange. Wings are dark with white tips; legs are pink.
Snowy Plover: Small plover, pale brown upperparts, white underparts. Dark patches on either side of upper breast (partial breast band), behind eye, and on white forehead. Bill, legs, and feet are black. Wings have white stripes visible in flight. Dark tail has white edges. Dark gray legs and feet.
Long-billed Curlew: Very large sandpiper with brown mottled upperparts, buff-brown underparts with dark streaks and spots. Bill is very long, decurved. Cinnamon-brown underwings visible in flight. Feeds by probing mud with bill or dunking head under water. Direct flight, steady, strong wing beats.
Black-tailed Godwit: Large, tall godwit with black-barred, orange-brown body. Orange-brown head and neck, and white mark between eye and bill; combination of prominent white rump, white wing bar, and pure white underwings is unique among the godwits. Black-tipped yellow bill is long and straight.
Bar-tailed Godwit: This large shorebird has a long upcurved bill, scaled brown, black and gray mottled upperparts and pale red-brown underparts. The tail is white with dark bars and the legs and feet are dark gray. It has a direct flight with steady wing beats. The female is larger than the male with a longer bill and has a little red-brown color. It feeds on mollusks, worms and aquatic insects.
Red Knot: This medium-sized sandpiper has black, brown and gray scaled upperparts, a red-brown face, neck, breast and sides, and a white lower belly. It has a slightly curved black bill. The wings show white bars in flight. Diet includes insects, larvae, mollusks and crabs. It has a swift direct flight with rapid wing beats. Sexes are similar.
Purple Sandpiper: Medium sandpiper, upperparts are scaled gray-brown, crown is dark, and white underparts are streaked. Bill is dark with a yellow base and slightly decurved. Wings have large white stripes visible in flight; tail has dark central stripe above and is white below.
Baird's Sandpiper: This medium-sized bird has scaled gray-brown upperparts, white underparts and a dark-spotted gray-brown breast. The crown, face and neck are buff with fine brown streaks. It has a white rump with a dark central stripe and black legs and feet. Feeds on insects and spiders. Swift direct flight with rapid wing beats; long wings allow them to make long flights. Sexes are similar.
Buff-breasted Sandpiper: This medium-sized sandpiper has a buff wash over the entire body except for the white vent. It has black-spotted and streaked upperparts, slightly scaled underparts, a white eye ring, black bill and yellow legs. It feeds mostly on insects. It has a swift direct flight with rapid wing beats. It shows white wing linings in flight. The sexes are similar.
Wilson's Phalarope: This medium-sized sandpiper has gray-brown upperparts, red-brown streaks on back and shoulders, red-brown markings on white underparts, gray crown, white face, black eye-line, a black needle-like bill, gray wings and a white tail and rump. Female is brighter; paler crown and grayer upperparts. Feeds on crane flies and brine shrimp. Swift direct flight with rapid wing beats.
Great Skua: Large, heavy-bodied seabird, prominent white patch in primary feathers. Body color ranges from a light bleached to dark brown, all have a cinammon wash that makes the bird look red-tinged. Strong direct flight with constant shallow wingbeats. Hugs wave contours or flies up to 150 feet.
South Polar Skua Dark: This small, gull-like skua occurs in two color phases. Dark phase adult has a dark brown body with a large white patch at base of primaries visible in flight. Dark bill, thick and heavy; short, broad tail. Light phase adult has pale gray-brown head and underparts. Feeds on fish, krill and squid. Strong direct flight with shallow wing beats. Sexes are similar.
Common Murre: Medium seabird with brown-black upperparts, throat, white underparts, and long dark bill. Tail is short. Some Atlantic birds have a narrow white eye-ring and stripe extending past the eye. Can dive to depths of more than 240 feet. Feeds on fish and invertebrates. AKA Common Guillemot.
Thick-billed Murre: Medium-sized seabird with black upperparts, head and neck, and white underparts. A thin, white stripe extends from bill to cheek. The bill is short and black. Legs and feet are black. Feeds on fish, marine worms, crustaceans and squid. Strong swift flight low over water.
Black Guillemot Adult: Medium-sized seabird, black body with a large white wing patch and a dark, pointed bill. In flight white auxillaries and underwing linings are visible. Legs and feet are red. It flies low over the water with rapid wing beats. The inside of their mouth is bright orange.
Long-billed Murrelet: Small seabird with dark brown upperparts and darker brown barring, paler throat and white eye-ring. Underparts are lighter brown with brown barring. Straight black bill. Legs and feet are brown. Strong fast direct flight, often close to the water on rapid wing beats.
Sabine's Gull: Small gull with gray back and white nape, rump, and underparts. Hood is solid black and eye-ring is dark red. Bill is black with yellow tip; legs and feet are black. The upperwings are gray with black primaries and white secondaries. Tail is slightly forked when folded.
Franklin's Gull: This medium-sized gull has a gray back and white underparts. It has a black head, white eye ring, orange bill with a black spot near the tip, and red-orange legs. The wings are short with white spotted black tips. It has a strong direct flight with deep wing beats. It feeds mostly on terrestrial and aquatic insects. The sexes are similar; males are slightly larger.
Black-tailed Gull: Large gull with white head, neck, breast, and underparts; light charcoal-gray wings and back; large yellow bill with black ring above red tip; pale yellow eyes with red orbital ring; short yellow legs and feet; long wings; telltale short black tail with white edge.
Mew Gull: Medium-sized gull with gray back and upperwings, and white head, neck, breast, and belly. Bill is bright yellow. Wings have white-spotted black tips; tail is white. Feet and legs are dull yellow. Graceful, bouyant flight. Undulating, with several rapid wingbeats and a pause.
California Gull: This is a medium-sized gull with a white head and underparts, gray wings and black wing tips. The bill and legs are yellow, and it has a red eyering. It has a strong direct flight with deep wing beats. It feeds on worms, mice, other birds and their eggs, and garbage. The sexes are similar, but the males are usually larger than females, with a larger bill, head and tarsi.
Yellow-legged Gull: Large white gull, medium gray upperparts and red spot on bright yellow bill; legs and feet are yellow. Tail is white. Wades or makes shallow dives to catch food, steals, scavenges. Strong, direct flight with deep, steady wing beats. Rides thermals and updrafts, sometimes hovers.
Thayer's Gull: Large gull, gray upperparts, white head, tail, underparts. Bill is yellow with red spot near the end of the lower mandible. Wings are gray with white-spotted, dark gray tips. Legs are dark pink. Direct flight, strong, steady wing beats, soars on thermals or updrafts.
Slaty-backed Gull: This large gull has a slate-gray back, white head, belly, tail, and upper wings; dark outer primaries separated from mantle by row of white spots. Gray underside of primaries; broad white trailing edge to wings. It has pink legs and feet, yellow eyes with red orbital ring and a yellow bill with red spot near tip. Diet includes fish, crustaceans and insects. Sexes are similar.
Brown Noddy: This medium-sized tern is brown except for the white forehead blending to a gray nape and a small white lower half-eye ring. Its wedge shaped tail has a small notch at the tip. It has black legs and feet and a long slender bill. It has a strong swift flight with steady wing beats. It often flies with erratic changes of direction. It feeds mainly on fish and squid. The sexes are similar.
Sooty Tern: This medium-sized tern has long wings, a deeply forked tail, black crown, nape, and upperparts and a broad triangular white forehead patch. The underparts are white; upper tail is black with white outer edges. It has a direct flight with strong, shallow wing beats. It hovers before dipping for prey. It feeds on squid and fish. Sexes are similar.
Bridled Tern: Medium pelagic tern. Black crown, nape separated from gray-brown upperparts by whitish collar. Chevron-shaped white forehead patch extends behind eye. Long pointed wings and deeply forked tail. Whitish underparts; underwings have brown trailing edge. Black bill, legs.
Gull-billed Tern: Lightest North American tern. Black cap that extends below eyes, down nape; pale gray upperparts that are darker at the wingtips; short, stout black bill and black legs, feet; long wings with very long outer primaries. Direct flight with graceful, shallow wing beats.
Roseate Tern: White below with slight, variable pinkish cast visible in good light; pale gray above with black cap, nape and deeply forked tail that projects well beyond wingtips at rest. Bill mostly black with some red at base; legs and feet are red-orange. Graceful, direct flight.
Arctic Tern: This is a medium-sized, slim tern with gray upperparts, black cap, a white rump and throat, and pale gray underparts. The tail is deeply forked and white with dark edged outer feathers. The bill is dark red. The legs and feet are red. It has a buoyant, graceful flight with steady wing beats. It feeds on small fish, crustaceans and insects. Both sexes are similar in appearance.
Band-tailed Pigeon: Large dove, small, purple-gray head and broad neck with distinctive, thin white band on nape. Back and wings are purple-gray, underparts grade from purple-gray neck and breast to white belly. Tail is pale gray, dark band at base. Bill, legs,feet are yellow. Swift direct flight.
Common Ground-Dove: Small, rounded dove with plain gray-brown back and scaled pink-gray head and breast. Eyes are red and bill is orange-red with black tip. The wings show rufous primaries in flight. Tail is short. Legs and feet are pink. Forages on ground. Swift direct flight with rapid wing beats.
Smooth-billed Ani: Medium-sized, shaggy bird, black overall with bronze overtones, thick bill and long tail, often bobbed, wagged, and held beneath body. Feathers on upper breast and back are lined with iridescent silver and are scaled. Flight is slow and weak,often low to the ground.
Groove-billed Ani: Medium-sized black bird with iridescent blue and green overtones, with a very long tail (half the length of the bird). Bill is huge, with arched ridge and narrow grooves. Feeds on insects, ticks, spiders, lizards, fruits, berries and seeds. Flies low to the ground.
Snowy Owl: Large, white owl with variable black bars and spots. The head is round and lacks tufts, eyes are yellow, and the bill is black. Feathered feet and toes provide protection from the arctic cold. Direct flap-and-glide flight with powerful, deep wingbeats. North America's only all-white owl.
Burrowing Owl: Small ground-dwelling owl, mostly brown with numerous white spots and no ear tufts. Eyes are yellow. White chin and throat. Tail is short, and legs are long. Bouyant, erratic flight with slow, silent wingbeats. May hover briefly above prey. The scientific name means "little digger."
Lesser Nighthawk: Medium-sized nightjar with gray and white mottled upperparts, white throat, and brown and white mottled underparts with dark belly bars. Wings are dark with conspicuous pale patches visible in flight. Tail is dark brown and has thin white bars across top. Darting erratic flight.
Antillean Nighthawk: Large nightjar, buff to pale cinnamon-brown overall with fine, dark bars and conspicuous white throat. White patches on long, pointed wings visible in flight. Tail is long, slightly notched with white subterminal tail band. Bill is tiny, bordered with bristles. Mothlike flight, frequent changes of direction.
Green-breasted Mango: Medium-sized hummingbird, glittering green overall with decurved, black bill, and purple chin. The slightly notched brown-purple tail has two bronze-green central tail feathers. Feeds on nectar and insects. Direct and hovering flight with very rapid wing beats.
Black-chinned Hummingbird: Medium hummingbird with metallic green upperparts, gray underparts, white breast, green-washed flanks. Head appears black overall with white spot behind eye; cap is very dark green. Throat is iridescent violet; bill is long and slightly decurved. Forked tail is dark green with black outer tail feathers.
Anna's Hummingbird: Medium hummingbird; male has bronze-green upperparts, dull gray underparts. Hood and throat are iridescent red, may appear black or dark purple in low light; broken white eye-ring is usually visible. Tail is dark green with black outer tail feathers. Feeds on nectar, insects, spiders, and sap.
Broad-tailed Hummingbird: Medium hummingbird with green upperparts and flanks, iridescent red throat, and gray underparts. Dark green tail may show some rufous. Black bill is long and straight. Black legs, feet. Feeds on nectar, spiders, sap and insects. Direct and hovering flight with very rapid wing beats.
Calliope Hummingbird: Very small hummingbird, metallic green upperparts and flanks, white underparts. Throat feathers are long, purple-red, appearing as streaks on a white background, whiskers when fluffed out, or dark, inverted V when folded. Direct and hovering flight with very rapid wing beats.
Broad-billed Hummingbird: Medium-sized hummingbird with metallic green body and vibrant blue throat. Bill is bright red with black tip. Tail is black, forked, and has white undertail coverts. Legs and feet are black.Feeds on nectar and insects. Direct and hovering flight with very rapid wing beats.
Buff-bellied Hummingbird: Medium-sized hummingbird with iridescent green upperparts, head, throat, and upper breast, and buff lower breast and belly. Slightly forked tail is dark chestnut-brown with cinnamon-brown undertail coverts. Bill is slightly decurved and red with a black tip.
Gyrfalcon: Large northern falcon with three color morphs: dark, white, and gray. Dark morph is dark gray with pale streaks on throat and upper breast. White morph is white with dark spots and markings on wings, nape, and sides. Gray morph is a mix. The eyes, bill, and legs of all morphs are yellow.
Gray Flycatcher: Small flycatcher with gray or olive-gray upperparts and pale gray underparts. Eye-ring is white. Upper mandible is dark gray, while lower mandible is pale pink with black tip. Wings are dark with two white bars. The tail is long, dark, and has white edges. Legs and feet are black.
Vermilion Flycatcher: Small, stocky flycatcher, gray-black upperparts and scarlet-red crown, throat, and underparts. Face has thick, black eye-line. Wings and tail are gray-black; tail has thin white tip. Female has gray-brown upperparts, white underparts with brown streaks, and a light to dark salmon colored belly and vent. Weak fluttering flight on shallow wing beats. Hovers in display flight and when foraging.
Ash-throated Flycatcher: Medium flycatcher with gray-brown upperparts, pale gray throat and breast, and gray-brown tail with rufous highlights. The pale yellow belly distinguishes this species from other Myiarchus flycatchers. Bill, legs, and feet are black. Strong flight with shallow wing beats.
Tropical Kingbird: Large flycatcher with olive-gray upperparts, gray head, inconspicuous orange crown patch, pale throat, dark eye patch, and dark upper breast. Underparts are bright yellow. Wings and tail are brown. Feeds on insects, frogs, fruits and berries. Weak fluttering flight.
Fork-tailed Flycatcher: Medium-sized flycatcher with pale gray upperparts, black head, inconspicuous yellow crown stripe, and white underparts. Wings and spectacularly long, deeply forked tail are black. Wing linings are white. Swift flight with shallow wing beats. Feeds on insects.
Northern Shrike: Medium shrike with gray upperparts,pale gray underparts. Mask is black with white border, bill is heavy and slightly hooked. Wings are black with white patches. Tail is long, black, and white-edged. Legs and feet are black. Flight is swift and undulating on shallow rapid wing beats.
Bell's Vireo: Small vireo, faint, broken eye-ring, thick, slightly flattened hooked bill, one or two faint wing bars. Upperparts are gray and underparts are white with pale yellow wash on sides. Eastern race has gray-green upperparts and distinct yellow wash on underparts. Legs and feet are gray.
Black-whiskered Vireo: Large vireo with olive-green upperparts and olive-buff washed white underparts. The head has gray crown, dark whiskers (moustache stripe) along sides of throat, white eyebrow with black border, and red-brown eyes. The bill is black, straight, and slightly hooked.
Cave Swallow: Small swallow (Southwest pelodoma), with steel-blue upperparts, white underparts, rufous wash on breast and sides. Forehead is chestnut-brown and throat and rump are buff. Tail is square. Swift, graceful flight, alternates several rapid, deep wing beats with long curving glides.
Black-capped Chickadee: Medium-sized, stocky chickadee with pale gray upperparts and breast and pale olive-brown underparts. The black cap and bib and white cheeks are conspicuous. Black bill is short and thin. Wings are dark with broad white edges on feathers. State bird of Maine and Massachusetts.
Boreal Chickadee: Large chickadee, brown upperparts, dark brown cap, small black bib, gray face and neck, white cheek, rufous sides, white underparts. Gray wings, tail. Short, weak flights on rapidly beating wings. Alternates several quick, shallow strokes with wings pulled to sides.
Bewick's Wren: Small wren with unstreaked, gray to red-brown upperparts and plain white underparts. White eyebrows are conspicuous. Tail is long and white-edged with dark bars. Bill is long and slightly decurved. Legs and feet are gray. Eastern populations are red-brown, Northwestern birds are more brown, and Western Interior birds are gray-brown. Eastern populations have seriously declined since the 1960s.
Northern Wheatear: Small thrush (oenanthe), with gray upperparts, black wings, mask, and tail. Underparts are white, and buff-brown wash on throat. Dark gray back and nape. Very active bird, nervous and restless while foraging. Bobs tail and often makes short flights to hawk insects.
Mountain Bluebird: Small thrush with brilliant blue back, head, and wings. Throat and breast are paler blue, and belly and undertail coverts are white. Female is gray overall with blue wings, rump, and tail. Hovers more than other bluebirds and drops on prey from above, also catches insects in flight. Eats mostly insects in the summer.
Varied Thrush: Large thrush, dark gray upperparts, rust-brown throat, breast, sides, eyebrows, black breast band, and white belly and undertail. Wings are dark gray with two rust-brown bars. Tail is dark gray with white corners. Legs and feet are brown. Direct, swift flight on rapidly beating wings.
Sage Thrasher: Small thrasher, gray upperparts, dark-streaked white underparts with pale brown wash. The head is gray, bill is short and slightly decurved. Wings are dark with thin,white bars. Tail is dark with white corners. Legs and feet are black. Fast flight on shallow wing beats.
White Wagtail: Medium-sized wagtail, mostly white except for black upperparts and upper breast. All-white wing appears as a white wing patch when folded. The tail is black with white outer tail feathers that are conspicuous in flight and flicked continually when walking. Black bill, legs and feet.
Sprague's Pipit: Medium pipit with streaked, brown upperparts, buff breast with dark streaks, and white throat and belly. Tail is brown with white edges. Thin, pale bill. Legs are yellow to pale brown. Its plumage blends well among prairie grasses, making it difficult to spot.
Chestnut-collared Longspur: Small, sparrow-like bird with brown-streaked upperparts, black breast and flanks, some have chestnut on underparts, pale gray belly. Face is buff with black stripe behind eye. Nape is chestnut-brown, crown is black, and throat is white. Tail is black with strongly contrasting white outer tail feathers.
Smith's Longspur: Medium sparrow, yellow-brown streaked upperparts, black head with white eyebrow and ear patch, and yellow-brown nape, throat, and underparts. Wings have large white bars. Tail is black with white edges. Yellow-brown legs and feet. Feeds on seeds, spiders, and insects.
Bachman's Warbler: Small warbler, olive-green upperparts, yellow forehead, throat, underparts, faint white eye-ring, black crown, bib. It was last seen in the United States in 1962, when it was recorded near Charlestown, South Carolina. In Cuba a wintering female was spotted in 1981.
MacGillivray's Warbler: Medium-sized warbler with olive-green upperparts and yellow underparts. White eye-ring is broken and slate gray hood extends to upper breast where it darkens to black. It forages for insects on or close to the ground. As it hops, it often flicks its tail from side to side.
Black-throated Gray Warbler: Small warbler, black-marked, slate-gray upperparts, black streaks on flanks, white underparts. Head has black hood and throat, sharply contrasting white eyebrow and cheek stripe, and yellow spot in front of eye. Wings are dark with two white bars. Black bill, legs, feet.
Townsend's Warbler: Olive-green upperparts, black throat and upper breast. Lower breast and sides are yellow with black streaks and belly is white.Face is yellow with black crown and cheek patch and yellow crescent below eye. Wings have two white bars. Tail has white edges, dark center and tip.
Green-tailed Towhee: Large sparrow, olive-green upperparts and pale gray underparts. Crown is rufous, throat is white with black stripes, and bill is gray. Wings and tail are edged with olive-yellow. Rapid bouncy flight, alternates several quick wing beats with wings pulled to sides.
Spotted Towhee: Large sparrow, white-spotted black back, black rump. Black breast, white belly, rufous sides. Head is black and eyes are red. Wings are black with white spots. Tail is long and black with white corners. Short, bounding flights, alternates rapid wing beats with wings pulled to sides.
Clay-colored Sparrow: Medium sparrow with black-streaked brown upperparts and buff underparts. The face is pale with finely streaked crown, crisp brown cheek patch, white eyestripe, and gray nape. Pink-gray legs and feet. Short flight, alternates several rapid wing beats with wings pulled to sides.
Lark Sparrow: Medium sparrow with streaked, gray-brown upperparts and buff underparts with black breast spot. Head has black, white, and chestnut-brown stripes. Tail is long and black with white edges. Short, fluttering flight, alternates rapid wing beats with wings pulled to sides.
Lark Bunting: Large sparrow, nearly black with large white wing patches, short, white-edged tail, and heavy, blue-gray bill. Forages in groung, low vegetation. Strong flight, alternates shallow wing beats with brief periods of wings pulled to sides. It is the state bird of Colorado.
Le Conte's Sparrow: Small sparrow, brown-streaked back, brown-streaked gray nape, pale gray underparts with streaks on sides, pale yellow breast. Head is flat with brown stripes. Face is pale yellow-orange with gray cheeks. Legs, feet are pink-brown.
Harris's Sparrow: Large sparrow with dark-streaked, brown upperparts and white underparts with dark-streaked sides. Head has stark black crown, face, and throat. Gray cheek patch is marked by a thin, black line. Bill is pink. Alternates rapid wing beats with brief periods of wings pulled to sides.
Black-headed Grosbeak: Large, stocky finch, black-streaked, orange-brown back, black head, wings, tail. Breast is orange-brown and belly is yellow. Wings have conspicuous white patches. Black legs, feet. Female lacks black head and throat, has brown streaked upperparts and buff streaked underparts. Forages on ground and in trees and bushes. Eats insects, caterpillars, seeds, fruits and berries.
Lazuli Bunting: Small finch, bright blue upperparts, cinnamon-brown breast and sides, white belly. Dark wings with white wing bar. Forages on ground, low in trees and bushes. Eats seeds, insects, caterpillars. Short flights, alternates rapid wing beats with brief periods of wings pulled to sides.
Dickcissel: Medium-sized, stocky, sparrow-like bird. The Male (shown in background) has a dark gray back and head, and black-streaked shoulders. Face is gray with yellow eyestripe and breast is yellow. V-shaped bib is black. Wings are brown with chestnut-brown patches. The female (shown in foreground) and winter adult have brown streaked upperparts and no black bib. The juvenile is brown and streaked.
Western Meadowlark: This short stocky, ground-dwelling bird has dark-streaked brown upperparts, bright yellow underparts, and a broad black V on the breast. It has a dark brown-and-white striped crown, sharply pointed bill and brown tail with white edges. Feeds mostly on insects but also eats seeds. Flies low, with rapid shallow stiff wing beats followed by short glides. Sexes are similar.
Yellow-headed Blackbird: Medium-sized blackbird with black body, bright yellow hood and breast, and distinct white wing patches. Bill, legs and feet are black. Forages in low vegetation and on the ground. Feeds on insects, larvae, snails, seeds, and grains. Strong direct flight on rapid wing beats.
Brewer's Blackbird: Medium-sized blackbird with purple gloss on head and neck and green gloss on body and wings. Eyes are yellow. Follows farm tractors and plows. Forages on ground. Feeds on caterpillars, insects, fruits, seeds and grains. Strong, swift and direct flight with rapidly beating wings.
Bullock's Oriole: Medium oriole, mostly bright orange with black crown, eye-line, throat stripe, back, and central tail. Wings are black with large white patches. Forages in trees and bushes. Feeds on insects, caterpillars, fruits and berries. Sips nectar. Strong direct flight with rapid wing beats.
Scott's Oriole: Medium-sized oriole with black hood extending onto breast and back. Belly and rump are bright yellow. The wings are black with yellow shoulder patches and two white bars. Tail is yellow with thick black tip and central line. Strong direct flight with rapid wing beats.
Pine Grosbeak: Large, robust finch with red-washed black back, gray sides and undertail coverts, and pink-red rump and underparts. Head and face are pink-red; bill is heavy and black. Wings are black with two pale bars. Tail is black and slightly notched. Feeds on seeds, buds, fruits and insects.
Lesser Goldfinch: Small finch with dark back (black in the east, dark green in the west), black crown, bright yellow underparts. Wings, tail black with white markings. Forages in shrubs, brush, weedy fields for seeds and insects. Swift flight, alternates rapid wing beats with wings pulled to sides.
Restart Bird Identification Expert