TOP 15 PHOTOGENIC FEEDER BIRDS

Bird feeders can draw all sorts of birds to your yard. Every species have their unique markings, but some stand out for their amazing beauty. Every backyard bird watcher is delighted to see beautiful birds at their feeders and some are lucky enough to snap a photo of their feathered friends. Can you guess the identities of our Top 15 Photogenic Feeder Birds of North America? Click on each image to learn more about every bird (and their nickname) on our list!

 
Black-capped Chickadee close up

THE DAREDEVIL

Ruby-throated Hummingbird close up

LIL CHOPPER

American Goldfinch close up

THE VEGETARIAN

Black-headed Grosbeak close up

MONARCH HUNTER

Western Scrub-Jay close up

MR. PERSONALITY

Northern Flicker close up

FASHIONISTA

House Finch close up

HOLLYWOOD STAR

Carolina Wren close up

THE HOBO

Painted Bunting close up

LIVING RAINBOW

Hooded Oriole close up

THE WEAVER

Red-bellied Woodpecker close up

JACKHAMMER

Chipping Sparrow close up

CARROT TOP

Eastern Bluebird close up

OLD BLUE

Rufous Hummingbird close up

LIL RED

Northern Cardnial close up

THE DEFENDER

 

6 MORE BIRD BEAUTIES

Not every photogenic North American bird is a feeder bird, and we couldn't ignore these six non-feeder birds. If you're looking to snap some great bird pictures away from your back yard, try seeking out these beauties. Of course, some people actually can count these six species as "backyard birds," especially if they live near the ocean, lake or other body of water! Click each image to learn a little more about these bonus entries to our list of photogenic birds.

Bald Eagle

EAGLE

Atlantic Puffin

PUFFIN

Snowy Owl

OWL

American Flamingo

FLAMINGO

Mallard

MALLARD

Ring-Necked Pheasant

PHEASANT

 

BIRDS A to Z

 

AMERICAN GOLDFINCH ("THE VEGETARIAN")

Scientific name: Spinus tristis

Range: Most of the continental U.S. and Southern Canada, in fields and backyards.

Description and diet: When a male American Goldfinch flies by, you definitely notice him thanks to his canary-yellow feathers. Unlike most birds, American Goldfinches are strict vegetarians and only eat insects by accident. Bring them to your feeders by offering thistle or sunflower seeds as well as feeders designed explicitly for them.

Ideal feeder for the American Goldfinch: Perky-Pet® All-in-One Finch Feeder
More American Goldfinch facts:
Wild Bird Library: American Goldfinch

 

ATLANTIC PUFFIN

Scientific name: Fratercula arctica

Range: From Maine to western Greenland, Iceland and Great Britain to Norway along shorelines and in the North Atlantic Ocean.

Description and diet: Atlantic Puffins use their bright-colored bills to capture fish while diving into ocean waters. Using their grooved tongues, a puffin can hold on to several fish while hunting for even more - as a result, you can often see puffins with their beaks full of fish. Puffins live up to 30 years in the wild and use their kidneys and other specialized glands to remove excess sea salt that they've swallowed. Horned and Tufted puffins, both of whom are related to the Atlantic, can be found along North America's Pacific Coast.

More Atlantic Puffin facts:
Audubon: Project Puffin

 

AMERICAN FLAMINGO

Scientific name: Phoenicopterus ruber

Range: Formerly in South Florida, but now mostly in the Bahamas, Mexico and Cuba in coastal lakes and saline lagoons.

Description and diet: Essentially eradicated from their U.S. range, you can still see American Flamingos in Florida. Despite their diminished population in the U.S., their world population isn't endangered. The long-legged birds strain water through their bill, which allows them to harvest tiny animals and plant matter, including mollusks and algae. Although these pink beauties appear large, a typical American Flamingo only weighs between 6 and 8 lbs!

More American Flamingo facts:
What Bird: American Flamingo

 

BALD EAGLE

Scientific name: Haliaeetus leucocephalus

Range: Most of the U.S. and Canada, near lakes, rivers, reservoirs and coasts.

Description and diet: Bald Eagles are excellent fishers - eagerly hooking fish lingering near the surface of a lake or stream. What's less well known is that Bald Eagles also eat small mammals, reptiles, crabs and even other birds! Since recovering from a steep decline in the 20th Century, Bald Eagles are now present in nearly every state. Many parks and environmental agencies host Eagle Cams, where you can watch a pair incubate its egg and raise the hatchling!

More Bald Eagle facts:
All About Birds: Bald Eagle

 

BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEE ("THE DAREDEVIL")

Scientific name: Poecile atricapillus

Range: North of Oklahoma up to Alaska, in forests, thickets and parks.

Description and diet: Black-capped Chickadees are very cute and extremely courageous. They eat a little bit of everything - from seeds to suet to spiders and berries. Many people consider them very curious and quite bold, and are often willing to eat from your hand. They're most known for their "chick-a-dee-dee-dee" song.

Ideal feeder for the Black-capped Chickadee:
Perky-Pet® 10" Sunflower Seed and Peanut Feeder
More Black-capped Chickadee facts:
Wild Bird Library: Black-capped Chickadees

 

BLACK-HEADED GROSBEAK ("MONARCH HUNTER")

Scientific name: Pheucticus melanocephalus

Range: Near and in the Rocky Mountains through the summer, in mixed woodlands and near desert streams.

Description and diet: Bring these cinnamon-colored birds to your home with sunflowers. Another menu item for these grosbeaks are Monarch Butterflies, which they often hunt while wintering in Mexico. It's easy to mistake the Black-headed Grosbeak for a Baltimore Oriole. While their color is similar, Black-headed Grosbeaks have a much heavier bill compared to an oriole.

Ideal feeder for the Black-headed Grosbeak:
NO/NO® Sunflower Basket Wild Bird Feeder
More Black-headed Grosbeak facts:
National Geographic: Black-headed Grosbeak

 

CAROLINA WREN ("THE HOBO")

Scientific name: Thryothorus ludovicianus

Range: Nearly the entire eastern U.S. from central Texas to the East Coast, in woodlands and backyard brush piles.

Description and diet: While primarily insect eaters, the reddish-brown Carolina Wren comes to feeders for protein rich snacks including sunflower seeds. These birds will pair-bond for life, and usually travel around their territory in these pairs. Carolina Wrens love to nest in abandoned buildings, unused nest boxes, tin cans and mailboxes. They'll even nest in the pockets of a jacket left outside - talk about picture-worthy!

Ideal feeder for the Carolina Wren:
NO/NO® Tray Forest Green Wild Bird Feeder
More Carolina Wren facts:
Critter Catalog: Carolina Wren

 

CHIPPING SPARROW ("CARROT TOP")

Scientific name: Spizella passerina

Range: Nearly all of North America in grassy clearings in parks and yards.

Description and diet: These little red and brown-headed sparrows enjoy the mixed seed in your bird feeders. They're so numerous and common in the U.S. that they're perfect for a photo essay and their varied markings make them worth your attention. The nests of Chipping Sparrows are often so sparse that you can see light through them.

Ideal feeder for the Chipping Sparrow:
NO/NO® Tray Brass Wild Bird Feeder
More Chipping Sparrow facts:
All About Birds: Chipping Sparrow

 

EASTERN BLUEBIRD ("OLD BLUE")

Scientific name: Sialia sialis

Range: From Texas to the East Coast in open country such as pastures, yards and golf courses.

Description and diet: Bring Eastern Bluebirds to your yard with a peanut or suet feeder and a few accompanying bluebird nesting boxes. These bright blue and orange birds have a peculiar nesting arrangement. The male picks the location, fills the nest area with building supplies and shows off with mating displays to attract his mate. After all that, the male leaves all construction and incubation to the female.

Ideal feeder for the Eastern Bluebird:
Perky-Pet® 10" Sunflower Seed and Peanut Feeder
More Eastern Bluebird facts:
All About Birds: Eastern Bluebird

 

HOODED ORIOLE ("THE WEAVER")

Scientific name: Icterus cucullatus

Range: Southern parts of Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada and coastal California in open woodland near streams and in urban and suburban areas.

Description and diet: Hosting even more vibrant plumage than the more well-known Baltimore Oriole, the Hooded Oriole dines on bugs, jelly and nectar. When building a nest, the female hooded oriole actually "sews" the nest to palm leaves by purposefully pushing fibers through the plant.

Ideal feeder for the Hooded Oriole:
Perky-Pet® Oriole Jelly Feeder
More Hooded Oriole facts:
Wild Bird Library: Hooded Oriole

 

HOUSE FINCH ("HOLLYWOOD STAR")

Scientific name: Haemorhous mexicanus

Range: Eastern and Western U.S., but not in a wide band through the plains states. See them in parks, yards, farms, forest edges and urban centers.

Description and diet: Originally these red-breasted birds lived on the West Coast, but they were transferred to the East Coast as part of the pet trade and dubbed "Hollywood Finches." Now they are common feeder birds on both coasts and eat seeds, flower buds and nectar. How common are they? Scientists say there's more than 1.4 billion in North America, so you're sure to find some nearby!

Ideal feeder for the House Finch:
Birdscapes® Window Feeder
More House Finch facts:
Wild Bird Library: House Finch

 

MALLARD

Scientific name: Anas platyrhynchos

Range: Much of the northern hemisphere except arctic regions and parts of Australia and New Zealand in almost any wetland habitat

Description and diet: Mallards, which are often fearless enough to be hand-fed, are best known for the male's gorgeously iridescent green head. These ducks are mostly seed eaters, but humans have unfortunately conditioned them to enjoy bread and other varieties of "people food." Male Mallards don't quack! Only the females can make that quintessential duck sound.

Ideal feeder for the Mallard: While Mallards don't eat at feeders, they do sometimes eat under feeders! Try the Birdscapes® Tall Tulip Garden Lantern Feeder
More Mallard facts:
Encyclopedia Britannica: Mallard

 

NORTHERN CARDINAL ("THE DEFENDER")

Scientific name: Cardinalis cardinalis

Range: Eastern U.S. along with Texas and parts of Arizona and New Mexico in dense shrubs near back yards and woodlots.

Description and diet: Easily one of North America's most recognizable birds, the male Northern Cardinal's vibrant red plumage makes it easy to see in a snowy landscape. Among songbirds, the female Northern Cardinal is one of the few that sings, and she often does it while incubating eggs. These birds are often fiercely territorial and will even attack their own reflections during breeding season.

Ideal feeder for the Northern Cardinal:
Perky-Pet® Seed Barn
More Northern Cardinal facts:
Wild Bird Library: Northern Cardinal

 

NORTHERN FLICKER ("FASHIONISTA")

Scientific name: Colaptes auratus

Range: Nearly the entirety of North America except desert regions in open habitats including yards and parks.

Description and diet: Although the flicker is technically a woodpecker, it prefers to spend its time hunting insects on the ground, including bugs living in cow patties. When it eats from feeders, it loves sunflower seeds, suet and thistle. In at least one instance, these large birds have been reported hunting juvenile bats! With their beautiful spots and red cheek markings, these birds are always camera ready.

Ideal feeder for the Northern Flicker:
NO/NO® 5 Tier Bronze Wild Bird Feeder
More Northern Flicker facts:
Audubon: Northern Flicker

 

PAINTED BUNTING ("LIVING RAINBOW")

Scientific name: Passerina ciris

Range: Most of Texas and around the Gulf Coast, mostly in areas of dense brush.

Description and diet: It's hard to believe that such a colorful bird visits the U.S., but bird feeders in the southeastern U.S. often see this crayon-box bird. Though they eat insects during mating season, they feast on seeds the rest of the year. Their rainbow-like plumage makes the Painted Bunting a primary target for poaching and they're considered near threatened by conservationists.

Ideal feeder for the Painted Bunting:
Perky-Pet® Antique Copper Lantern Feeder
More Painted Bunting facts:
Wild Bird Library: Painted Bunting

 

RED-BELLIED WOODPECKER ("JACKHAMMER")

Scientific name: Melanerpes carolinus

Range: Nearly the entire eastern U.S. from central Texas to the East Coast, in oldstand forests and backyard feeders.

Description and diet: Entice these insect-eating woodpeckers to your feeders with protein-rich treats and suet. In an effort to attract a mate, it's not uncommon for males to rap on metal objects rather than wood. You can find several YouTube videos of the Red-bellies knocking on metal poles and aluminum roofs. Their striking colors and the way they announce their presence make them very photogenic!

Ideal feeder for the Red-bellied Woodpecker:
Perky-Pet® Deluxe Chalet
More Red-bellied Woodpecker facts:
What Bird: Red-bellied Woodpecker

 

RING-NECKED PHEASANT

Scientific name: Phasianus colchicus

Range: The Great Plains regions of the U.S. and Canada to the northern Pacific and Atlantic coasts in fields and brushy areas.

Description and diet: The males of this chicken-like bird species are known for their beautiful speckled plumage, green heads and red eye patches. They eat just like chickens too - devouring insects, seeds, corn and other crops. Nesting females incubate their eggs in a shallow depression on the ground. Shortly after hatching, pheasant chicks can feed themselves. Since these pheasants often prowl grasslands for food, they're usually easy to spot and photograph.

More Ring-necked Pheasant facts:
Bird Web: Ring-necked Pheasant

 

RUBY-THROATED HUMMINGBIRD ("LIL CHOPPER")

Scientific name: Archilochus colubris

Range: Central America north through the eastern half of the U.S., in open woodlands, meadows and backyards

Description and diet: Sporting a red bib and a green vest certainly gets you noticed, doesn't it? Mostly seen in the Eastern U.S., the Ruby-throated Hummingbird is the only hummingbird that breeds in the Eastern U.S. Backyard observers love to watch their amazing helicopter-like flying as they chow down on bugs and sip from nectar feeders.

Ideal feeder for the Ruby-throated Hummingbird:
Perky-Pet® Top Fill Glass Hummingbird Feeder
More Ruby-throated Hummingbird facts:
Wild Bird Library: Ruby-throated Hummingbird

 

RUFOUS HUMMINGBIRD ("LIL RED")

Scientific name: Selasphorus rufus

Range: From the Rocky Mountains and west, in open areas, yards and parks.

Description and diet: In the right light, these hummingbirds are said to glow like hot coals. That fiery nature is evident in how territorial they can be - a Rufous Hummingbird will often bully any visiting hummingbird that tries to take a taste from any feeder within their territory. Some Rufous's will travel almost 4,000 miles in one direction as they migrate.

Ideal feeder for the Rufous Hummingbird:
Garden Song® Window Glass Hummingbird Feeder
More Rufous Hummingbird facts:
Arkive: Rufous Hummingbird

 

SNOWY OWL

Scientific name: Bubo scandiacus

Range: Northern parts of North America, Europe and Asia in fields and other open grasslands.

Description and diet: The Snowy Owl earns its name thanks to its abundance of white feathers, and male Snowys are often completely white. Unlike most owls, the Snowy Owl is a daytime hunter that preys on mice and other small mammals. In Europe a single Snowy Owl is said to eat up to 1,600 lemmings a year. Thanks to its striking beauty, size, wide range and daylight activity cycle, the Snowy Owl is easily the most photographed owl in the world!

More Snowy Owl facts:
Defenders of Wildlife: Snowy Owl Facts

 

WESTERN SCRUB-JAY ("MR. PERSONALITY")

Scientific name: Aphelocoma californica

Range: Western U.S. in oak woodlands, pastures, orchards and back yards.

Description and diet: Relatives of the Blue Jay, these vibrantly blue birds are known for their assertive and inquisitive behavior. What makes them so photogenic? They don't mind close-ups and they're often willing to be hand fed from humans. Try offering Scrub-Jays a peanut and snapping a picture!

Ideal feeder for the Western Scrub-Jay:
Birdscapes® Copper Garden Bird Feeder
More Western Scrub-Jay facts:
Bird Web: Western Scrub-Jay

 

Birdfeeders.com is the top destination to find quality Wild Bird Feeders and Accessories. Perky-Pet®, K-Feeders® and NO/NO® wild bird products are trusted brands to bird lovers everywhere. Interact with nature, relax and build memories that last a lifetime by conveniently ordering from birdfeeders.com. Happy Bird Feeding!