I’m a small dove, skittish and quiet. I clean up by eating dead animals and carrion, thereby preventing the spread of bacteria. Litter can be deadly to birds and other wildlife. I look a lot like a female Mallard, and I interbreed with them, making it challenging to identify a pure Mottled Duck. You can find me along the beaches and some of Florida’s lakes during the summer. That’s right, you can find me in Florida, and not just on your Thanksgiving table. My brown stripes on my stomach and head distinguish me from other birds. I’m one of the few birds that’s blue! I come to Florida in the wintertime. I’m a common owl in Florida, best found at night when I am out hunting. I really do sound like I’m laughing when I get excited with a group of my friends! Try to photograph me with a fish in my mouth! The opinions expressed in the getaway ideas, Floridians' Favorites and readers' comments do not necessarily represent those of VISIT FLORIDA. Some people mistakenly think I’m an owl when they hear my mournful coo. You’ll probably hear me before you see me–my call sounds like my name, ‘Phoebe, Phoebe.’ I don’t really partake of the seed offered at feeders. I typically winter in Mexico and breed along the Rocky Mountains out west. Look for my rusty red head and tummy patches. Black vultures are typically found roosting in forested areas in tall trees and structures such as: 1. I eat insects and hide in shrubs, but if you stumble upon me in your yard, I’m not that afraid of you. I’m a big fan of American Beautyberry! Our females are less colorful than our black-and-yellow male counterparts. I’m the biggest woodpecker you’ll see in your Florida backyard. I have a distinctive orange beak. As my name implies, I’m most active at night. I’m supposed to symbolize springtime, but I’m only in Florida during the winters. Don’t be offended if I never come out! Tricolored heron – Blue-gray heron with white underparts and light-colored throat. We feed on millet seed and appreciate extra bushes to hide in, please! I hide in the vegetation by the edge of ponds. In fact, many beautiful and unusual birds are eager to visit feeders in the winter because of scarce food supplies. black bill, legs and feet. I’m another very common backyard bird. By continuing on our website, you consent to our use of cookies. I’m bigger than a Least Tern and smaller than a Royal Tern. Do not just cut the line. Solitary. They eventually migrated to Australia and parts of Southeastern America. Look for me diving for fish in the ocean. They may eventually enjoy the challenge of ageing these birds, and distinguishing them from white-morph Reddish Egrets and immature Little Blue Herons. Your satisfaction is guaranteed! Florida is a great place to study these species, as well as the enigmatic “Great White” Heron, which occurs fairly commonly in only the southern half of that state. Find me in open, grassy areas. The Carolina chickadee is a common resident except in South Florida; Tufted titmice live in cypress swamps, hardwood hammocks, longleaf pine sandhills and suburbs. You’ll see them in flocks of 100 or more at times. I’m a very common bird of marshes and swamps. I’m a secretive bird of salt water marshes. I’m a year-round bird in Florida, but you might not notice me much except in spring. More, please!! Wings are dark with bold white stripes visible in flight. I pass through Florida during spring and fall migration. Like most warblers, you’ll only find me in Florida during spring and fall migration. Females will implant their eggs in the nests of other bird species, and most of the birds are silly enough to raise our babies as their own, leaving us to keep pigging out at your feeders! My bright yellow stomach and yellow “spectacles” make me easy to distinguish from other small birds that flit high over your head. I was introduced in New York in the early 1850s, and I quickly spread across the continent. I nest in Florida and you may see several broods of little cardinals each year. I used to be known as the Common Moorhen, as I’m a small hen of swampy areas. I’m a quiet little shorebird that you’ll find on the beaches. They scatter, leaving more food for me! Beaches and birds: they're a natural pairing. I really do sound like a cat! In Central Florida I’m not as common as the Mourning Doves. My long bill curls down, allowing me to pull my food from the sand. I’m a small bird with bright blue feathers on my back and white feathers on my tummy. I’m one of the more animated birds along Florida’s coasts. In Florida, many of our seabirds are migratory and can be seen in greater abundance during fall and winter migration. I’m one of the few year-round resident warblers in Florida. But please make sure the House Sparrows don’t take over the nesting box — they will knock my eggs out! We’re brown and white streaked birds. I’m pretty easy to find at Fort De Soto park. I also breed in the northern part of Florida. I’m an average-sized shorebird who spends my winters on the coasts of Florida. I’m a common tern of Florida’s beaches. Our females are brown and white. The female (above) is brown where the male is black but also wears the rufous. I travel in flocks, and when I invade your backyard, don’t expect me to leave until your feeders are empty! Occasionally I’ll stop over in Florida for a little while, usually if I’m injured during migration. Yes, it's fun, but it makes them aggressive and dependent on humans for food. If you hook a bird while fishing, very gently reel in the bird. I’m a little like a Palm Warbler with a streaked tummy. I’m one of the most common wintering ducks in Florida. I’m not the prettiest bird in the world, but I serve a useful purpose. I’ll come to your backyard to visit your ground feeders. I’m a drab little bird, but look for the pretty undersides of my wings when I fly. If you find me in late summer or early spring, you might find that my head and neck are pink, which is my breeding plumage. I’m a distinctive black-and-white raptor you’ll see soaring through the summertime skies. I don’t stick around for long! I’m as white as the sand, and I’m super fast. Then I tend to disappear as I take care of my babies and hunt for my insects. The fish that I eat are bigger than my head. Usually I end up eating the seed that the other birds spill. Listen to Dr. Hardy’s introduction. I’m one of the earlier warblers to find during spring and fall migrations. But when I pass through, I might be in my non-breeding plumage, which is a drab brown. Our males have distinctive brown heads, gray backs, black tummies, and a red eye. You’ll find me in large, noisy flocks. Learn more in our Cookie Notice and our Privacy Policy. You might mistake me for a Blue-gray Gnatcatcher or a Ruby-crowned Kinglet if you don’t … :). You’ll find me in year-round marshy areas. A few places that are especially good for Florida beach birding: You might also like to try the Great Florida Birding & Wildlife Trail, a 2,000-mile driving tour connecting 492 great birding hot spots. I live year-round in Central and Northern Florida. Look for the yellow over my eye to distinguish me from my cousin the Song Sparrow. You might see huge flocks of us. I’m one of the most common ducks that you’ll find near ponds, although mostly you’ll find hybrids where my genes are mixed with other ducks’. Herring gulls are much larger, with a white head. My bright blue colors are hard to miss! Sparrow sized, slate gray plumage with white outer tail feathers. I’ll visit your feeders and clean them out! I visit Central Florida’s beaches in the summertime. My name comes from my broad tail, which distinguishes me from other grackles. I’ll be the one flying low over the marshes and scaring the birds below me. If you put out a bluebird house, I might choose to nest in it. This is not a comprehensive list, but hopefully it will help you identify the visitors to your yard and the “customers” at your feeders. Our males are gorgeous, and our feathers shine green and blue and purple in the sun. I look very similar to the American Crow, but I sound different. I like suet and insects. I’m a big fan of wild berries. If you’re wondering, my name means ‘Tufted Little Bird.’ I’m a big fan of huge oak trees. Images and content © 2002-2020, Jessica D. Yarnell. The smallest tern is named, appropriately, the Least tern. Look for my petite beak, orange legs, and black cap (at least in the springtime, when I’m in my breeding plumage). Reproduction in whole or in part is prohibited without the written permission of the publisher. Normally I hang out in places like Maine and Alaska, but you may be surprised to find me off the beach of Florida too. I’m not supposed to be in Florida at all. My call sounds like ‘Jay, Jay!’ and it sometimes makes little birds mistake me for a hawk. I’m a loud little piggie who will squawk his head off while cleaning out your feeders, all year round! I’m a bird of high places…look for me at the tops of trees, fences, etc. We’re a drab brown instead of bright blue. I’m very similar to my cousin the Greater Scaup, who prefers the ocean water and lacks the small bump on the back of my head. I am one of the most likely piggies, I mean, birdies, that you will see in your backyard. But in the wintertime I lose my spots, so don’t confuse me with other sandpipers! You might think I look similar to my cousins the Piping Plover and Snowy Plover. My everyday feathers are white and boring, but in my breeding plumage, I’m much fancier. Click on the buttons to filter the birds by color, location, and time of year that they are in Central Florida. We nest in Florida. I hang out at the tops of trees. I’m especially pretty in my breeding plumage! Some of us are year-round residents. I show up during the wintertime. I come to Florida during the wintertime. This bird's bright yellow feet can tell you it's a Snowy Egret, not a Great Egret. Like many shorebirds, I come to Florida in the wintertime. I’m a small gray bird that hangs out in the treetops. I hang out on some of Florida’s lakes. We’re easiest to identify if we’re together. A great place to watch pelicans and herons is on any pier with fishermen. You’ll often see me standing still, stalking my food. My face is featherless so that bacteria doesn’t build up on me. Wings are dark with two white bars. Fishermen should properly dispose of their used fishing line. I’m a small duck that comes to Florida in the wintertime. Use your binoculars to find me! The adult male bluebird has a vibrant blue back, head and tail, chestnut colored throat and breast and white belly. I’m in Florida year-round, but I’m much easier to find in winter, when my northern buddies come to visit. I visit Florida in the wintertime. I’m another very common backyard bird. You can tell I’m a Sharp-shinned Hawk instead of the very similar Cooper’s Hawk by the bend in my wings when you see me in flight. I can be quite pretty when my feathers catch the light of the sun. My medium-sized beak that slopes downward distinguishes me from the similar Long-billed Curlew and Marbled Godwit. 2. If you like to take pictures, try capturing the brilliance of my glossy feathers when I fly! (Female on left, male on right). I look a lot like a Tricolored Heron, but my beak is pale blue and I don’t have brown streaks. My name is very fitting for me – I use my spoon-shaped beak to fish for my food in the water. I live in Florida year-round. I live in northern Florida all year round and I’m a model backyard birdie – neat, well-mannered, cheerful, singer. Little blue heron – Small, bluish heron with reddish neck and head. I’m one of the many ducks that visit Florida in the wintertime. (Do not dial 911.). They dive towards the water picking off fish just below the surface. I don’t stick around long! We typically migrate along the major flyways, and we sometimes stray to Florida. My song is very cheerful and my buddies and I fuss a lot as we fight over the seed at your feeders. I’m a common, year-round bird of marshy areas. My name comes from the fact that I ‘thrash’ around in the brush when I’m hunting for food. If you see our cousins the Ruby-throated hummingbirds in your yard, watch them for flashes of brown and you might realize that one of us is in their flock! Pines 3. Look for my bluish beak with black tip, or for the white crown of my head. Our juvenile birds are white, and they molt into their blue colors in their first year. We have sharp curved beaks that allow us to pull the snails out of their shells to eat. https://www.birdsandblooms.com/birding/bird-species/herons-egrets I frequent marshes, and sometimes golf courses. This bird is native to Africa and Asia. I only visit Florida during the wintertime. I’ll flit so quickly from branch to branch that you may find it hard to take my picture. Their bills are narrow but strongly hooked. These chatty birds can be quickly identified by the bright white lines above their eyes, a slightly curved beak, and their upright tails, which they flick about as they busily hop around. If you find your mulch scattered out of the edges of your flowerbeds, it’s a good sign that I’m around! Note how mine is long and straight – that’s one of the ways you can distinguish me from a Long-Billed Curlew. My bright red spot is hard to mistake, even when I stay high in the trees. You might be more likely to see me flying than perched, although I like to sit out on fenceposts, too! I’m one of the more common white birds that you’ll see in Florida’s marshes. Look for me at places like Viera Wetlands or Lake Apopka. I’m the smallest woodpecker, almost identical to the Hairy Woodpecker. Their feeding habitats include seasonally inundated grasslands, pastures, farmlands, wetlands, and rice paddies. We’re cousins of the Red-Winged Blackbirds. A black bill, jet black eyes and speedy black legs give them away. Like my cousin the Black-bellied Whistling-Duck, I have a fun call as I fly over the marsh! Sometimes you’ll hear me fly overhead, but I don’t always land to say hello. Find me along the beaches. I’m an endangered bird, but our population is growing. I’m the large and slightly obnoxious bird that you’ll see foraging around Florida. You’ll see willets in small flocks, alone or in pairs. Our males are bright red, and our females bright yellow. Don’t confuse me with a Cattle Egret – look at my beak! Look for the white tip on my tail to distinguish me from other hawks. I migrate to Florida in the wintertime. My call sounds like the name ‘Peter, Peter, Peter.’ I will definitely come to your feeders! I stand very still for long periods of time, then stalk my prey very slowly. I’m a quiet bird who you’ll see flying overhead in the marshes and around lakes. I’m a small hawk that migrates through Florida in the spring and fall. Check out my beak – I may look like a nice little bird, but I’m actually like a small hawk. I visit Florida during the winter, and I’m considered a “good find” by birders. Look for my white tummy and the brown on my back. I migrate through Florida as I pass from my wintering grounds in South America to my breeding grounds in Canada. The small ring-billed gull has a black ring around its yellow bill. I’m a cute little plover, with distinct black stripes and orange legs. Look for me in the springtime, when I’m quite vocal as I mate. I’m a year round bird in Florida. You might find me hunting insects in your yard, particularly if you live near a pond or lake. You may find me hanging around your bird feeder, but my focus isn’t on your birdseed. Upper breast, head, neck are heavily streaked. You might at first mistake me for a mockingbird, but if you look closer, I do have a yellow beak! I can be found in Florida year-round, and not just by the ocean. I like to hide in tall trees while I search for my prey. A gull, or rather, a … Tempt me to your yard by offering mealworms and a nesting box. You can distinguish me from other terns by my beak – I’m the one with the yellow tip on my bill. There are two varieties of us: a bigger “Greater” Yellowlegs, and a smaller “Lesser” Yellowlegs. Great blue heron – Large, blue-gray heron, mostly white head, yellow bill. Silver Leapers / Flickr / CC by 2.0. Additional types of birds such as pelicans, herons, gulls and terns also populate Florida beaches. My beak is probably the feature that most distinguishes me from other offshore birds. Great White Heron. I’m a small duck that comes to Florida in the wintertime. I’m a distinctive-looking duck that winters in Florida. They may not be abandoned at all. My song is very cheerful and my buddies and I fuss a lot as we fight over the seed at your feeders. I’m one of the most common shorebirds that you’ll find running along the waves on Florida’s beaches during the winter. The female is a little smaller than the male. You guessed it, they named us for our yellow legs! The bill is usually pinkish. My songs are imitations of other birds, but one way to distinguish me from the real birds is that my songs tend to repeat, six times in a row. Our bigger birds have longer calls. Unlike a Tree Swallow, I have brown on my chin and underside. 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