47 Common Backard Birds North America

American Robin for identification

Have you wondered what those birds are that are visiting your backyard? Do you need help identifying common backyard birds?

There is a great joy in putting up bird feeders and watching what comes to visit, but it gets better if you know who they are. Well, now you can find out the most common birds in North America that visit feeders or hop across your lawn.

So if you’re ready to do some backyard birding read on to find out how to identify birds and how to attract more birds to your yard.

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These are the most common backyard birds in North America that may visit your lawn or feeders.  They are the birds that appear most frequently on state checklists submitted by bird watchers on ebird.  The percentage shows how often they were recorded on bird checklists.

47 Most common backyard birds in North America:

  1. Mourning Dove (35.4%)
  2. Northern Cardinal (35%)
  3. American Robin (34.%)
  4. American Crow (33%)
  5. Blue Jay (30%)
  6. Song Sparrow (26%)
  7. American Goldfinch (25%)
  8. European Starling (24.7%)
  9. Red-winged Blackbird (24.6%)
  10. House Finch (23.8%)
  11. Downy Woodpecker (23.6%)
  12. Red-bellied Woodpecker (21%)
  13. Black-capped Chickadee (19.5%)
  14. House Sparrow (19.2%)
  15. Tufted Titmouse (18.7%)
  16. Dark-eyed Junco (18.2%)
  17. White-breasted Nuthatch (18%)
  18. Northern Flicker (17.7%)
  19. Carolina Wren (17%)
  20. Northern Mockingbird (16%)
  21. Yellow-rumped Warbler (14.76%)
  22. Common Grackle (14.53%)
  23. Carolina Chickadee (12.52%)
  24. Gray Catbird (11.69%)
  25. White-throated Sparrow (11.06%)
  26. Barn Swallow (10.93%)
  27. Chipping Sparrow (10.73%)
  28. Eastern Bluebird (10.59%)
  29. Brown-headed Cowbird (10.37%)
  30. Rock Pigeon (9.83%)
  31. Common Yellowthroat (9.81%)
  32. Eastern Phoebe (9.32%)
  33. Ruby-crowned Kinglet (8.62%)
  34. Hairy Woodpecker (8.18%)
  35. Cedar Waxwing (8.10%)
  36. House Wren (7.93%)
  37. White-crowned Sparrow (7.92%)
  38. Eastern Towhee (7.58%)
  39. Yellow Warbler (6.52%)
  40. Pileated Woodpecker (6.40%)
  41. Red-eyed Vireo (6.00%)
  42. Anna’s Hummingbird (5.90%)
  43. Red-breasted Nuthatch (5.69%)
  44. Spotted Towhee (5.50%)
  45. Ruby-throated Hummingbird (5.46%)
  46. Lesser Goldfinch (5.13%)
  47. Indigo Bunting (4.99%)

This article gives you identification information and photos to help you identify and attract more of the common backyard birds in North America.

The 47 common backyard birds in North America

1. Mourning Dove

Mourning Dove

Mourning Doves are graceful small-headed birds, plump bodies and long tails.  They are a soft brown with black spots on the wings. Males are slightly heavier than females.

  • Length: 9.1-13.4 in (23-34 cm)
  • Weight: 3.0 -6.0 oz (96-170 g)
  • Wingspan: 17.7 in (45 cm)

Mourning Doves are common over all of the lower 48 all year but may migrate after breeding from the north Midwest and southern Canada.

Mourning Doves can be seen perching on telephone wires and foraging for seeds on the ground in grasslands, fields, and backyards. They can also be found in open areas or on the woodland edge.

You can attract more Mourning Doves to your backyard by scattering millet on the ground or on platform feeders.  They will also eat black sunflower seeds, nyjer, cracked corn, and peanut hearts.

2. Northern Cardinal

Northern cardinal male and female for identification

The bright red male Northern Cardinal with black around their faces is a great sight, especially against a white winter background. 

Females are also a little showy with their brown coloring, sharp brown crest, red highlights, and red beaks.

  • Length: 8.3-9.1 in (21-23 cm)
  • Weight: 1.5-1.7 oz (42-48 g)
  • Wingspan: 9.8-12.2 in (25-31 cm)

Northern Cardinals live in the Eastern half of the US and across The South to Arizona all year.

Northern Cardinals will sometimes attack their own reflection during breeding season as they obsessively defend their territories.

You can attract more Northern Cardinals to backyard feeders with sunflower seeds, peanut hearts, millet, and milo.

They will feed from large tube feeders, hoppers, platform feeders, or food scattered on the ground.

3. American Robin

American Robin for identification

American Robins are a common sight on lawns eating earthworms.  They have black heads and back with red or orange breasts.  They tend to roost in trees in winter, so you are more likely to see them in your backyard from spring.

  • Length: 7.9-11.0 in (20-28 cm)
  • Weight: 2.7-3.0 oz (77-85 g)
  • Wingspan: 12.2-15.8 in (31-40 cm)

American Robins are resident in the lower 48 and the coast of Western Canada and Alaska. Those that breed in Canada and inland Alaska move south for the winter.

American Robins can be found in many habitats, from woodlands, forests, mountains to fields, parks, and lawns. They eat earthworms, insects, snails, and fruit.

You can attract more American Robins to your yard with sunflower seeds, suet and peanut hearts, fruit, and mealworms.  Platform feeders are best or food scattered on the ground. Also, try planting some native plants that produce berries, such as juniper, sumac, hawthorn, and dogwood.

4. American Crow

American Crow for identification

American crows are large all-black birds that make a hoarse, cawing sound.

  • Length: 15.8-20.9 in (40-53 cm)
  • Weight: 11.2-21.9 oz (316-620 g)
  • Wingspan: 33.5-39.4 in (85-100 cm)

American Crows are residents all year in most of the lower 48 and the Pacific Coast in Canada and Alaska. Those that breed in Canada and the northern Midwest migrate south for winter.

They are common birds that can be found in most habitats, including treetops, woods, fields, beaches, or towns.

They eat most things and usually feed on the ground, eating earthworms, insects, seeds, and fruit. They also eat fish, young turtles, mussels, and clams and will even eat eggs and nestlings of many species of birds.

American Crows gather in large numbers of up to two million crows in winter to sleep in communal roosts.

You can attract more American Crows to your backyard by scattering peanuts but can become a nuisance as attracted by garbage or pet food if left out.

5. Blue Jay

Blue Jays are common large songbirds with a blue upright crest, blue and black backs, and white undersides. 

  • Length: 9.8-11.8 in (25-30 cm)
  • Weight: 2.5-3.5 oz (70-100 g)
  • Wingspan: 13.4-16.9 in (34-43 cm)

Blue Jays live in eastern US states and Southern Canada all year. Some birds will migrate west for winter but not very frequently.

They are noisy birds that travel in family groups eating acorns when available. They can be found in forests, but especially near oak as they eat acorns. They can also be found in backyards near feeders.  As well as acorns, they eat insects, nuts and seeds, and grain. They may also take eggs from nests or take nestlings.

Blue Jays are large birds and prefer to fly in, grab a peanut or sunflower seed and take it away to feed.  They prefer platform or tray feeders to make it easy to make a quick exit.

Try peanuts, sunflower seeds, and suet to attract more Blue Jays to your backyard, but they prefer these on tray feeders or hopper feeders on a post.  They will also enjoy a birdbath.

6. Song Sparrow

Song sparrow for identification

Song sparrows are not as remarkable looking as other backyard birds, but these predominantly brown-streaked birds use their almost constant song to attract mates in spring and summer.

  • Length: 4.7-6.7 in (12-17 cm)
  • Weight: 0.4-1.9 oz (12-53 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.1-9.4 in (18-24 cm)

Song Sparrow live all year in the Northern US. Those that breed in Canada then migrate to the Southern States for winter.

They can be found in open, shrubby, and wet areas, often perched on a low shrub singing. They are often found at backyard feeders.

Song Sparrows eat a wide variety of insects and plants, including beetles, caterpillars, midges, spiders, and earthworms. They will also eat buckwheat, sunflower, raspberries, wild cherries, blackberries, wheat, and rice.

You can attract more song sparrows to your backyard feeders by putting black oil sunflower seeds, cracked corn, and nyjer on platform feeders.

7. American Goldfinch

American Goldfinch for identification

American Goldfinches are popular birds with the males bright yellow and black coloring in spring.  The females are more dull brown, as are males in winter.

  • Length: 4.3-5.1 in (11-13 cm)
  • Weight: 0.4-0.7 oz (11-20 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.5-8.7 in (19-22 cm)

American Goldfinches can be found in most of North America and are usually resident all year. However, those that breed in Canada and the Mid-West migrate to southern States for winter.

They can be found in weedy fields and overgrown areas foraging for sunflower, thistle, and aster plants. They are also common in suburbs, parks, and backyards.

To attract more American Goldfinches to your backyard, try planting thistles and milkweed.  They will visit most bird feeders and prefer sunflower seed and nyjer seed. 

8. European Starling

European Starlings are not native but are now one of the most numerous songbirds.  They are stocky black birds with iridescent purple, green, and blue tones. 

  • Length: 7.9-9.1 in (20-23 cm)
  • Weight: 2.1-3.4 oz (60-96 g)
  • Wingspan: 12.2-15.8 in (31-40 cm)

European Starlings live in all North America, except the north of Canada and Alaska.

Considered a pest by some due to their aggressive behavior, these birds fly in large, noisy flocks and can be seen perched in groups on the top of trees or flying over fields in flocks.

Starlings eat predominantly insects, including beetles, flies and caterpillars, earthworms, and spiders.  They also eat fruit, including cherries, holly berries, mulberries, Virginia Creeper, sumac, and blackberries, as well as grains and seeds.

You can attract more European Starlings to your backyard feeders with black oil sunflower seeds, suet, cracked corn, and peanuts.

9. Red-winged Blackbird

Red winged blackbird for identification

Red-winged blackbirds are very common and easy to identify with the all-black coloring except for the reddish-orange wing patches. Females are rather dull in comparison with streaky brown coloring.

  • Length: 6.7-9.1 in (17-23 cm)
  • Weight: 1.1-2.7 oz (32-77 g)
  • Wingspan: 12.2-15.8 in (31-40 cm)

Red-winged Blackbirds remain all year in the lower 48 and the Pacific Coast of British Columbia. Those that breed in Canada and some of the north of the lower 48 migrate south for the winter.

They can often be spotted sitting on telephone wires, and the males will fiercely defend their territories in the breeding season, even attacking people that get too close to nests. In winter, they roost in large numbers into the millions.

To attract more Red-winged blackbirds to your backyard, try mixed grain and seeds spread on the ground. They will also feed on large tube feeders or platform feeders.

10. House Finch

House Finches have a red head and breast in the males and brown-streaked coloring in the females. 

  • Length: 5.1-5.5 in (13-14 cm)
  • Weight: 0.6-0.9 oz (16-27 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.9-9.8 in (20-25 cm)

Originally only in western States, House Finches were introduced to eastern States and have done very well, even pushing out the Purple Finch.

They can be found in parks, farms, forest edges, and backyard feeders. They can be found in noisy groups that are hard to miss.

You can attract more House Finches to backyard feeders with black oil sunflower seeds or nyjer seeds in tube feeders or platform feeders.

11. Downy Woodpecker

Downy Woodpecker for identification in Massachusetts MA

Downy Woodpeckers are small birds that are common at backyard feeders.  They are often mixed in with other birds, such as chickadees and nuthatches. 

They have black and white coloring with a red patch at the back of their heads.  They look similar to the Hairy Woodpecker but smaller.

  • Length: 5.5-6.7 in (14-17 cm)
  • Weight: 0.7-1.0 oz (21-28 g)
  • Wingspan: 9.8-11.8 in (25-30 cm)

Downy Woodpeckers do not migrate and can be spotted in most states and provinces, except the north of Canada.

Downy woodpeckers can be found in woodlots, along streams, city parks, and backyards and eat mainly insects and beetle larvae, but also berries, acorns, and grains.

To attract more Downy Woodpeckers to your backyard, try suet feeders, but they will also eat black oil sunflower seeds, millet, and peanuts on platform feeders.

12. Red-bellied Woodpecker

Red-bellied woodpecker

Red-bellied Woodpeckers can be mistaken for Red-headed Woodpeckers as they have red caps, but they are much smaller than the Red-headed Woodpecker. Female Red-bellied Woodpeckers lack the red cap and only have red napes.

They have a very pale red belly that can be hard to spot but have the typical black and white markings over their backs.

Length: 9.4 in (24 cm)
Weight: 2.0-3.2 oz (56-91 g)
Wingspan: 13.0-16.5 in (33-42 cm)

Red-bellied Woodpeckers can be found in the Eastern US, and they do not migrate.

Red-bellied Woodpeckers can often be seen at bird feeders, especially if you live near wooded areas. They make a distinctive loud rolling call which means you will often hear them before you see them.

Red-bellied Woodpeckers eat insects, spiders, seeds from grasses, fruit, and nuts. They will also sometimes eat nestlings. They nest in dead trees and may use the same nest year after year. They lay 4-5 white eggs on a bed of wood chips.

The tongue of the Red-bellied Woodpecker sticks out 2 inches past the beak and is barbed at the tip, along with sticky spit. This helps catch prey from deep crevices.

13. Black-capped Chickadee

Black-capped Chickadee

The Black-capped Chickadee is a cute bird with a big round head and tiny body. These birds will happily feed at backyard feeders and investigate everything, including you! 

They have black caps and beaks, white cheeks, and are gray on the back, wings, and tail.

  • Length: 4.7-5.9 in (12-15 cm)
  • Weight: 0.3-0.5 oz (9-14 g)
  • Wingspan: 6.3-8.3 in (16-21 cm)

Black-capped Chickadees do not migrate and can be spotted in the northern half of the US and Canada.

They can be found in forests, open woods, parks. Black-capped Chickadees eat seeds, berries and insects, spiders, and suet.

To attract more Black-capped Chickadees to your backyard, try suet, sunflower seeds, and peanuts or peanut butter. They will even feed from your hand and are often one of the first birds to discover new feeders. They will also use nest boxes, especially if you fill them with wood shavings.

14. House Sparrow

House sparrow for identification

The House Sparrow is another introduced species that has done very well and is now one of the most common birds.  They have gray and brown heads and white cheeks. Their backs are black and brown, and their bellies are gray.

  • Length: 5.9-6.7 in (15-17 cm)
  • Weight: 0.9-1.1 oz (27-30 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.5-9.8 in (19-25 cm)

House Sparrows live in the lower 48 US States and Southern Canada all year.

They are found near houses and buildings and can be pretty tame and may eat out of your hand.

House Sparrows eat mostly grain and seed as well as discarded food. They can be considered a pest because they are non-native but are found in backyards even if you do not feed them.

You can attract more House Sparrows to your backyard feeders with most kinds of birdseed, including millet, corn, and sunflower seeds.

15. Tufted Titmouse

Tufted titmouse

Tufted Titmouses is gray on the back and white underneath with a cute gray crest and large eyes that often flock with chickadees, nuthatches, and woodpeckers.

  • Length: 5.5-6.3 in (14-16 cm)
  • Weight: 0.6-0.9 oz (18-26 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.9-10.2 in (20-26 cm)

Tufted Titmouses live in eastern and southeastern US states all year

Tufted Titmouses can be assertive over smaller birds and are found in woodlands, parks, and at backyard feeders. They eat mostly insects in summer, including caterpillars, beetles, ants, and wasps, as well as spiders and snails. They will also eat seeds, nuts, and berries and will hoard shelled seeds.

You can attract Tufted Titmice to your backyard feeders with sunflower seeds, suet, and peanuts on tube feeders or suet cages.  They will also eat from platform feeders. You can also try putting up a nest box to attract a breeding pair.

16. Dark-eyed Junco

Dark eyed junco for identification

Dark-eyed Juncos are sparrows that are different colors depending on the state.  They are generally slate-colored in the east and black, white, and brown in the west.

  • Length: 5.5-6.3 in (14-16 cm)
  • Weight: 0.6-1.1 oz (18-30 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.1-9.8 in (18-25 cm)

Dark-eyed Junco remain resident all year in the northeast, west, and Appalachian Mountains.  Those that breed in Canada and Alaska migrate south in winter to most of the United States.

They can be found in open and partially wooded areas, often on the ground, and are common across the continent. 

You can attract more Dark-eyed Juncos to backyard feeders with a variety of seeds such as black oil sunflower seeds, nyjer, cracked corn, millet, and peanuts.  Platform feeders or scattered on the ground are best.

17. White-breasted Nuthatch

White breasted nuthatch for identification

White-breasted Nuthatches are active little birds that are gray-blue on the back and white on the face and belly, with a black cap. 

They will often have a chestnut color on the lower belly and under the tail.

  • Length: 5.1-5.5 in (13-14 cm)
  • Weight: 0.6-1.1 oz (18-30 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.9-10.6 in (20-27 cm)

White-breasted Nuthatches live all year in US States and Southern Canada.

  They can be found in deciduous forests, woodland edges, parks, and yards with trees or at feeders. They mainly eat insects, including beetles and their larvae, caterpillars, ants, and also spiders.

White-breasted Nuthatches also eat seeds and nuts, including acorns, hawthorns, sunflower seeds, and sometimes corn crops.

They jam large nuts and acorns into tree bark and then whack them with their bills to open or ‘hatch’ them to get the seed out.

You can attract more White-breasted Nuthatches to your backyard with sunflower seeds and peanuts on tube feeders or suet feeders.

18. Northern Flicker

Northern Flicker

Northern Flickers are large brown woodpeckers with colorful black-spotted plumage with a white patch on its rump in flight plus a red nape of the neck in the males. 

Northern Flickers have red or yellow flashes in the wings and tail depending on where they originate. Red-shafted birds live in the west, and yellow-shafted birds live in the east.

Length: 11.0-12.2 in (28-31 cm)
Weight: 3.9-5.6 oz (110-160 g)
Wingspan: 16.5-20.1 in (42-51 cm)

Northern Flickers can be spotted across all of the US and Canada, but those that breed in Canada migrate south for the winter.

Northern Flickers make a loud ringing call with a piercing yelp. They nest in tree cavities, and they lay 5-8 white eggs. They mainly eat ants and beetles and fruits and seeds and can often be seen on the ground digging them up with their curved bill.

19. Carolina Wren

Carolina Wren

Carolina Wrens are shy birds that are dark brown on top and light brown underneath.  They have a white eyebrow stripe and upright tail, and loud teakettle song.

  • Length: 4.7-5.5 in (12-14 cm)
  • Weight: 0.6-0.8 oz (18-22 g)
  • Wingspan: 11.4 in (29 cm)

Carolina Wrens are residents all year across Eastern and Southeastern States.

They can be found in woods or thickly vegetated areas and will visit backyard feeders.

You can attract more Carolina Wrens to your backyard feeders with suet feeders, hulled sunflower seeds, or peanut hearts in large tube feeders or on platform feeders.

20. Northern Mockingbird

Northern mockingbird for identification

Northern Mockingbirds are medium-sized songbirds with small heads and long tails. They are a gray-brown color and slightly paler on the underside compared to the back and have two white wingbars visible in flight.

  • Length: 8.3-10.2 in (21-26 cm)
  • Weight: 1.6-2.0 oz (45-58 g)
  • Wingspan: 12.2-13.8 in (31-35 cm)

Northern Mockingbirds do not migrate and can be spotted across the lower 48 and Southern Canada.

They are usually seen alone or in pairs and aggressively defend their territory. A male mockingbird can learn around 200 songs in its life, copying other birds’ songs, and they can sing all through the day and into the night.

They don’t often visit feeders but will come to open lawn areas. To attract more Northern Mockingbirds, try planting fruiting trees or bushes, including hawthorns, mulberries, and blackberry brambles.

21. Yellow-rumped Warbler

yellow rumped warbler

Yellow-rumped Warblers are gray with flashes of yellow on the face, sides, and rump and white in the wings.

Females may be slightly brown, and winter birds are paler brown with bright yellow rumps and sides turning bright yellow and gray again in spring.

  • Length: 4.7-5.5 in (12-14 cm)
  • Weight: 0.4-0.5 oz (12-13 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.5-9.1 in (19-23 cm)

Yellow-rumped Warblers breed predominantly in Canada but also parts of the Rockies and the Appalachian mountains.

During migration, they can be seen in the Midwest before overwintering in the South, Southwest, and Pacific Coast as well as into Mexico and Central America.

Yellow-rumped Warblers can be found in coniferous forests, especially during the breeding season. During winter, they can be found in open areas with fruiting shrubs. In summer, they eat mostly insects and on migration, and in winter, they eat mostly fruit including bayberry and wax myrtle. 

You can attract Yellow-rumped Warblers to your backyard with sunflower seeds, suet, raisins, and peanut butter.

22. Common Grackle

Common grackle

The Common Grackle is a blackbird that is taller and longer tailed than a typical blackbird and with glossy iridescent bodies.

  • Length: 11.0-13.4 in (28-34 cm)
  • Weight: 2.6-5.0 oz (74-142 g)
  • Wingspan: 14.2-18.1 in (36-46 cm)

The Common Grackle is resident all year in southeastern states but those that breed in Canada and the Midwest migrate south.

They eat many crops but mostly corn and gather in noisy groups high up in trees. They will also eat garbage and so can be a nuisance. Their habitat is varied and includes open woodlands, marshes, parks, and fields. They may gather in their millions in winter to forage and roost, mixed in with other species of blackbird.

You can attract more Common Grackles to your backyard with most mixed grain and seed, sprinkled on the ground or on platform feeders.

23. Carolina Chickadee

Carolina Chickadee

Carolina Chickadees are tiny birds with large heads, black cap and neck, white cheeks and belly, and soft gray back, wings, and tail.

They are visually very similar to the Black-capped Chickadee, and they interbreed where their range overlaps.

  • Length: 3.9-4.7 in (10-12 cm)
  • Weight: 0.3-0.4 oz (8-12 g)
  • Wingspan: 5.9-7.9 in (15-20 cm)

Carolina Chickadees can be found in forested areas, parks, and backyards in Eastern and Southeastern States all year.

You can attract more Carolina Chickadees to your backyard feeders with Black oil sunflower seeds, Nyjer seeds, suet feeders, or peanuts.  They will feed on most types of feeders, including tube feeders, suet cages, or platform feeders. They will also nest in nest boxes or nest tubes.

24. Gray Catbird

gray catbird

Gray Catbirds are so named because of their distinctive catty mew song that can last for up to 10 minutes. They are medium-sized songbirds with a slate gray coloring, black cap and tail, and a reddish patch under their tails.

  • Length: 8.3-9.4 in (21-24 cm)
  • Weight: 0.8-2.0 oz (23.2-56.5 g)
  • Wingspan: 8.7-11.8 in (22-30 cm)

Gray Catbirds breed in the Mid-west, Eastern States, and southern Canada before heading to the Gulf Coast and the Caribbean for winter. Some remain all year along the East Coast.

You can spot Gray Catbirds in dense shrubs, small trees, and along forest edges or hedgerows.

You can attract more Gray Catbirds to your backyard feeders with fruit and fruit trees or shrubs such as dogwood, winterberry, and serviceberry.

25. White-throated Sparrow

White throated sparrow

White-throated Sparrows have a distinctive black and white striped head, bright white throat, and yellow between the eye and bill.  Their backs are brown, and underneath is gray.

  • Length: 6.3-7.1 in (16-18 cm)
  • Weight: 0.8-1.1 oz (22-32 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.9-9.1 in (20-23 cm)

White-throated Sparrows are migratory birds, breeding mainly in Canada before heading south in winter to Eastern and Southern States and the Pacific Coast.

You can find White-throated Sparrows on the ground in forests and woods and along the edges of wooded areas, often in large flocks.

White-throated Sparrows diet is mainly seeds of grasses and weeds as well as fruits such as grape, sumac, mountain ash, blueberry, blackberry, and dogwood. They will also eat a large number of insects from the forest floor, especially in summer.

You can attract White-throated Sparrows to your backyard feeders with millet and black oil sunflower seeds on platform feeders.

26. Barn Swallow

barn swallow

Barn Swallows are small birds with a deep-blue back, wings and tail, and reddish-brown underneath and across the face. The tail has long outer feathers that give a deep fork. The dark color of the back can make them look black-and-white.

  • Length: 5.9-7.5 in (15-19 cm)
  • Weight: 0.6-0.7 oz (17-20 g)
  • Wingspan: 11.4-12.6 in (29-32 cm)

Barn Swallows breed in Canada and the US  before heading to Central and South America. They can be found flying over meadows, farms, and fields looking for insects and usually build mud nests on man-made structures such as in barns.

You can attract more Barn Swallows by putting up nest boxes or cups and may eat ground-up eggshells on a platform feeder.

27. Chipping Sparrow

chipping sparrow

Chipping Sparrows are slender, long-tailed birds that have a grayish belly and brown and black-streaked back, with a rusty crown and black eye line. In winter, the colors are more subdued.

  • Length: 4.7-5.9 in (12-15 cm)
  • Weight: 0.4-0.6 oz (11-16 g)
  • Wingspan: 8.3 in (21 cm)

Chipping Sparrows spend their summer breeding in the US and Canada before flying to Mexico and Florida for winter.  Some remain all year in the southern states.

They can be found in small flocks on open ground and will come to backyards for many kinds of birdseed.

28. Eastern Bluebird

Eastern bluebird

Eastern Bluebirds are small thrushes with big, rounded heads, large eyes, and big bellies.

The males are deep blue on the back and a reddish color underneath. Females are grayer above with some blue in the wings and tail and a less vivid orange-brown breast.

  • Length: 6.3-8.3 in (16-21 cm)
  • Weight: 1.0-1.1 oz (28-32 g)
  • Wingspan: 9.8-12.6 in (25-32 cm)

They live all year in Southeastern US states but those that breed in the North and Sothern Canada migrate south.

They live in meadows and can be spotted perched on wires and posts or low branches looking for insects.

You can attract more Eastern Bluebirds to your backyard by offering mealworms and nest boxes if your yard is fairly open and spacious.

29. Brown-headed Cowbird

brown headed cowbird

Female Brown-headed Cowbirds are brown all over with slight streaking.

Males are larger and black-bodied with brown heads and with short tails. 

  • Length: 76.3-8.7 in (19-22 cm)
  • Weight: 1.3-1.8 oz (42-50 g)
  • Wingspan: 14.2 in (36 cm)

Brown-headed Cowbirds remain all year in eastern states, southern states and along the Pacific Coast but those that breed in northern and western states and Canada migrate south for winter.

They are often considered a nuisance as they destroy the eggs of smaller songbirds so that they can lay their eggs in the nest and have the bird foster their chicks.

30. Rock Pigeon

Rock Pigeon

Rock Pigeons are blueish gray with two black bands on the wing and black on the tail tip. They have iridescent throat feathers and orange eyes.

  • Length: 11.8-14.2 in (30-36 cm)
  • Weight: 9.3-13.4 oz (265-380 g)
  • Wingspan: 19.7-26.4 in (50-67 cm)

Rock Pigeons do not migrate and can be found in all US states and Southern Canada and the Paciific Coast to Alaska.

They are common in cities but also visit backyards especially for any birdseed on the ground. Some cities have ordinances against feeding pigeons as they are considered pests.

31. Common Yellowthroat

common yellowthroat

Common Yellowthroats are small songbirds that are brownish on the back and bright yellow underneath, with long tails.  The males have a black mask across their face.  The brightness of the yellow can vary geographically, and they may be more olive in parts underneath.

  • Length: 4.3-5.1 in (11-13 cm)
  • Weight: 0.3-0.3 oz (9-10 g)
  • Wingspan: 5.9-7.5 in (15-19 cm)

Common Yellowthroats spend the summer breeding over most of North America, except Alaska and northern Canada. Some remain all year along the Gulf Coast and Pacific Southwest.

They can be found in the spring and summer, often in marshy or wetland areas and brushy fields living in thick, tangled vegetation. 

They eat mostly insects and will be found in large backyards that have dense vegetation.

32. Eastern Phoebe

eastern phoebe

Eastern Phoebes are plump songbirds that are grayish-brown on the back and whitish underneath and with a darker head.

  • Length: 5.5-6.7 in (14-17 cm)
  • Weight: 0.6-0.7 oz (16-21 g)
  • Wingspan: 10.2-11.0 in (26-28 cm)

Eastern Phoebes are migratory birds, breeding across Northeastern and Central States and into Canada before migrating to the Southeast and Mexico for winter.

Some birds may remain all year towards the south of their range. 

Eastern Phoebes tend to be found alone, rather than in pairs or flocks, in quiet woodland wagging their tails from low perches. 

As they are flycatchers, flying insects make up the most of their diet, but they will also eat spiders and other insects, small fruit, and seeds. They often nest on bridges and barns or houses, making a nest out of mud and grass.

To attract more Eastern Phoebes to your backyard, try putting up a nest box or native plants that produce berries.

33. Ruby-crowned Kinglet

ruby crowned kinglet

Ruby-crowned Kinglets are small songbirds that are olive-green, and the males have a brilliant red crown that is usually flat so hard to see, but really great if you do.

  • Length: 3.5-4.3 in (9-11 cm)
  • Weight: 0.2-0.3 oz (5-10 g)
  • Wingspan: 6.3-7.1 in (16-18 cm)

Ruby-crowned Kinglets breed across Canada and the western mountains before migrating to Southern and Southwestern States and Mexico for the winter. 

Ruby-crowned Kinglets can be hard to spot and they are fast-moving quiet birds that flit around in the foliage of lower branches and of shrubs and trees looking for spiders and insects.

They come to suet feeders or platform feeders for hulled sunflower seeds, peanut hearts, and mealworms.

34. Hairy Woodpecker

Hairy woodpecker

Hairy Woodpckers are medium-sized woodpeckers have a black and white pattern and a large white patch on their backs. The males have a flash of red towards the back of their heads.

Length: 7.1-10.2 in (18-26 cm)
Weight: 1.4-3.4 oz (40-95 g)
Wingspan: 13.0-16.1 in (33-41 cm)

Hairy Woodpeckers do not migrate and live in all US states and Canada, except the far north.

They are visually similar to Downy Woodpeckers but larger and with a longer bill.  As it is often found in the same areas it is hard to tell them apart if not near each other. 

You can find Hairy Woodpeckers in woodlands on trunks or main branches of large trees but they are also found in a wide variety of habitats including woodlots, parks, and cemeteries. Hairy Woodpeckers’ diet is mostly insects.

35. Cedar Waxwing

cedar waxwing

Cedar Waxwings are elegant social birds that are pale brown on the head, chest, and crest, which fades to gray on the back and wings and tail.

Their belly is pale yellow and there is bright yellow on the tip. They have a narrow black mask over their eyes and bright red on the wingtips.

  • Length: 5.5-6.7 in (14-17 cm)
  • Weight: 1.1 oz (32 g)
  • Wingspan: 8.7-11.8 in (22-30 cm)

Cedar Waxwings remain all year in the northern half of the US. Those that breed in Canada head to the southern half of the US for winter.

They make a high-pitched call and can be found in berry bushes, in woodlands, and along streams.

To attract Cedar Waxwings to your backyard plant native trees and shrubs that have small fruit such as serviceberry, dogwood, juniper, winterberry, and hawthorn. You can also try fruit on platform feeders.

36. House Wren

house wren

House Wrens are small nondescript brown birds with darker barred wings and tails and a paler throat. 

  • Length: 4.3-5.1 in (11-13 cm)
  • Weight: 0.3-0.4 oz (10-12 g)
  • Wingspan: 5.9 in (15 cm)

House Wrens spend their summer breeding in the US and Southern Canada before migrating to The South and Mexico for winter.

House Wrens can be found in backyards, parks and open woods foraging for insects and spiders.

They can often be found energetically hopping through tangles and low branches with their tails up, stopping to sing their cheerful song.

House Wrens are fierce for their size, when it comes to getting the best nest holes, they will often harass larger birds, sometimes dragging eggs or nestlings out of a nest site they want. 

You can attract more House Wrens to your backyard by leaving piles of brush or putting up a nest box.

37. White-crowned Sparrow

white-crowned sparrow

White-crowned Sparrows are large grayish sparrows with long tails and small bills and bold black and white stripes on their heads.

  • Length: 5.9-6.3 in (15-16 cm)
  • Weight: 0.9-1.0 oz (25-28 g)
  • Wingspan: 8.3-9.4 in (21-24 cm)

White-crowned Sparrows breed in Alaska and arctic Canada before heading south to the lower 48 and Mexico for winter. Some may remain all year along the Pacific Coast and the mountainous west.

White-crowned Sparrows can be found in weedy fields, along roadsides, forest edges,  and in yards foraging for seeds of weeds and grasses or fruit such as elderberries and blackberries.

You can attract more White-crowned Sparrows to your backyard with sunflower seeds and many types of seeds that are dropped by other birds at the feeders.

38. Eastern Towhee

Eastern Towhee

Eastern Towhees are striking large sparrows, about the size of Robin, with a black head, throat, and back, reddish sides, log tails, and a white belly in the males.  The females are similar but with brown instead of black.

  • Length: 6.8-8.2 in (17.3-20.8 cm)
  • Weight: 1.1-1.8 oz (32-52 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.9-11.0 in (20-28 cm)

Eastern Towhees live all year in Southeastern States but birds further north move south for the winter and they may only appear in winter on the western edge of their range.

Eastern Towhees spend their time rummaging in the undergrowth and can be found along the edges of forests and thickets.

Eastern Towhees visit feeders for fallen seed if your yard has overgrown borders and will also visit platform feeders for black oil sunflower seeds, hulled sunflower seeds, cracked corn and millet.

39. Yellow Warbler

yellow warbler

Yellow Warblers are small bright yellow birds with a yellow-green back, and the males have chestnut streaks on the breast, which are a common sight in summer.

  • Length: 4.7-5.1 in (12-13 cm)
  • Weight: 0.3-0.4 oz (9-11 g)
  • Wingspan: 6.3-7.9 in (16-20 cm)

Yellow Warblers migrate a long distance to breed in Canada and the US, except the Southeast before heading into Central and Northern South America for winter. However they can be seen during migration in The Southeast.

Yellow Warblers can be found along streams and wetlands in thickets and along the edges of fields foraging for insects, including caterpillars, midges, beetles, bugs, and wasps.

Warblers are hard to attract to your backyard as they are shy and eat mainly insects.  To attract Yellow Warblers you can try suet, oranges, and peanut butter and plant berries and native plants that attract insects, so no pesticides or being too tidy!  Birdbaths with fountains with secluded thickets nearby to provide protection.

40. Pileated Woodpecker

The Pileated Woodpecker is the biggest Woodpecker in North America, and with its’ flaming-red triangular crest, it is very striking.

It is one of the biggest woodpeckers being nearly the size of a crow. It is mostly black with a white stripe, and when flying, the white underside of the wings can be seen. Males have an additional red stripe on the cheek.

Length: 15.8-19.3 in (40-49 cm)
Weight: 8.8-12.3 oz (250-350 g)
Wingspan: 26.0-29.5 in (66-75 cm)

They live all year in Eastern US states, across Canada, and into Northwestern US states.

Pileated Woodpeckers mostly eat carpenter ants from dead trees and fallen logs, but they also eat beetle larvae, termites, and other insects as well as fruit and nuts such as blackberries, sumac berries, dogwood, and elderberry.  They make a loud shrill, whinnying call and deep, loud drumming.

Dead trees are used for nesting sites for Pileated Woodpeckers, and they usually make a new one each year, so the old nest site is often used by other species of birds.  They usually lay 3-5 white eggs.

41. Red-eyed Vireo

Red-Eyed Vireo

Red-eyed Vireos are olive-green on their backs and white below. They have gray crowns and a white stripe above the eye. Their red eyes may appear dark from a distance or in some light conditions.

  • Length: 4.7-5.1 in (12-13 cm)
  • Weight: 0.4-0.9 oz (12-26 g)
  • Wingspan: 9.1-9.8 in (23-25 cm)

Red-eyed Vireos spend their summer breeding over much of Canada and the United States, except Alaska, the far north of Canada, and the Southwestern States. They spend winter in South America.

They are common in forests during the summer but often remain high up in the canopy.

42. Anna’s Hummingbird

annas hummingbird male

Anna’s Hummingbirds are tiny birds that are mostly green and gray.  The male’s head and throat are iridescent reddish-pink the female’s throat is grayish with bits of red spotting.

  • Length: 3.9 in (10 cm)
  • Weight: 0.1-0.2 oz (3-6 g)
  • Wingspan: 4.7 in (12 cm)

Unusually Anna’s Hummingbirds do not migrate and are the most common hummingbird along the Pacific Coast.

They make a dramatic dive display during courtship as the males climb up to 130 feet into the air before diving back to the ground with a burst of noise from their tail feathers.

They can be found near large colorful blossoms during the spring and readily visit hummingbirds feeders that you can fill with homemade hummingbird food and they may visit feeders all year.

43. Red-breasted Nuthatch

Red-breasted Nuthatch

Red-breasted Nuthatches are blue-gray birds with black and white stripes on the head and a rusty underside.

  • Length: 4.3 in (11 cm)
  • Weight: 0.3-0.5 oz (8-13 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.1-7.9 in (18-20 cm)

Red-breasted Nuthatches remain all year in northeastern and western states, Alaska and Canada but may move south across all of North America in winter if cone crops are poor.

They can be found in coniferous woods foraging for cones, and they do visit backyard feeders.

You can attract more Red-breasted Nuthatches to your backyard with black oil sunflower seeds, suet feeders, peanuts, and mealworms.

44. Spotted Towhee

spotted towhee

Spotted Towhees are large sparrows that are black on the head, throat, and back in the males and brown in the females.  Both males and females have reddish-brown sides and white bellies, and white spots on the wings and back.  They have long tails and are about the size of a Robin.

  • Length: 6.7-8.3 in (17-21 cm)
  • Weight: 1.2-1.7 oz (33-49 g)
  • Wingspan: 11.0 in (28 cm)

Spotted Towhees live in western US states but those in the interior of the north migrate south after breeding to Texas and surrounding areas.

Spotted Towhees can be found on the ground in dense tangles of shrubs scratching around for insects, including beetles, crickets, grasshoppers, caterpillars, wasps, and bees. They also eat acorns, berries, and seeds.

You can attract more Spotted Towhees to your yard if you leave overgrown borders, and they will visit platform feeders or ground feeders for Black Oil Sunflower seeds, Hulled Sunflower seeds, Cracked Corn, Millet, and Milo.

45. Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Ruby throated hummingbirds

The Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are bright green on the back and crown, with a gray-white underside and the males have an iridescent red throat. Female Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are green on the back and white underneath with brownish crowns and sides.

  • Length: 2.8-3.5 in (7-9 cm)
  • Weight: 0.1-0.2 oz (2-6 g)
  • Wingspan: 3.1-4.3 in (8-11 cm)

Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are the only breeding hummingbird in eastern North America, they then migrate further south to Central America. They migrate over the Gulf of Mexico or through Texas around the coast.

They start arriving in the far south in February and may not arrive in northern states and Canada until May for breeding. They start to migrate south in August and September.

Male Ruby-throated Hummingbirds can be aggressive in their defense of flowers and feeders.  They do not stick around long after mating and may migrate by early August.

These tiny birds zip from one nectar source to the next or catch insects in midair or from spider webs. They occasionally stop on a small twig but their legs are so short they cannot walk, only shuffle along a perch.

Flowering gardens or woodland edges in summer are the best places to find them when out.  They are also common in towns, especially at nectar feeders.

Ruby-throated females build nests on thin branches and make them out of thistle or dandelion down held together with spider silk. They lay 1-3 tiny eggs measuring only 0.6 in (1.3 cm)

46. Lesser Goldfinch

lessor goldfinch

Lesser Goldfinches are tiny bright yellow and black songbirds with long pointed wings and short notched tails. Females have olive backs and are more dull yellow underneath.

  • Length: 3.5-4.3 in (9-11 cm)
  • Weight: 0.3-0.4 oz (8-11.5 g)
  • Wingspan: 5.9-7.9 in (15-20 cm)

Lesser Goldfinches live in the Southwest and West Coast all year, but those that breed in the interior of The West migrate for winter.

Lesser Goldfinches can be found in large flocks in open habitats including thickets, weedy fields, forest clearings parks, and gardens. They forage for seeds, especially sunflower seeds, but also fruits from elderberry, coffeeberry, and buds from cottonwoods, willows, sycamores, and alders.

You can attract more Lesser Goldfinches to your yard with sunflower seeds and nyjer in tube feeders or platform feeders.

47. Indigo Bunting

Indigo bunting

Indigo Buntings are small birds with the males being bright blue with streaks of black in the wings and tail, females are brown.

  • Length: 4.7-5.1 in (12-13 cm)
  • Weight: 0.4-0.6 oz (12-18 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.5-8.7 in (19-22 cm)

Indigo Buntings migrate far from breeding grounds in the Eastern States, Southeastern Canada and Southern US states to winter grounds in Florida, Central and South America, and the Caribbean.

Indigo Buntings can be found in weedy fields and shrubby areas foraging for seeds and insects.  You can attract more to your backyard with small seeds such as nyjer and thistle.