Birds of  North Carolina

The North Carolina Bird Records Committee (NCBRC) of the Carolina Bird Club accepts over 450 bird species as native inhabitants of the state. While around 90 of these birds are rarely seen anywhere in North Carolina, 91 are considered rare only in some parts of the state, typically in specific seasons. The extinct species include the passenger pigeon, Carolina parakeet, and Bachman’s warbler.

Though different species remain distributed throughout the state, the western part of North Carolina, renowned for its magnificent mountains and picturesque waterfalls, is home to several wildlife and birds. The Chimney Rock State Park and Grandfather Mountain are the major birding sites here.

The northern cardinal has been North Carolina’s state bird since 1943.

Birds of North Carolina

  • White-Throated Sparrow
  • House Finch
  • Blue Jay
  • Ruby-Throated Hummingbird
  • Northern Cardinal
  • White-breasted Nuthatch
  • Downy Woodpecker
  • American Crow
  • Mourning Dove
  • Carolina Wren
  • Indigo Bunting
  • Great Crested Flycatcher
  • Northern Parula
  • Purple Finch
  • Carolina Chickadee
  • Eastern Wood-Pewee
  • White-breasted Nuthatch
  • Hermit Thrush
  • Red-Bellied Woodpecker
  • Brown-headed Cowbird
  • Black-eyed Junco
  • Red-Tailed Hawk
  • Tufted Titmouse
  • Swainson’s Hawk
  • Evening Grosbeak
  • Pine Grosbeak
  • Great Egret
  • Sharp-shinned Hawk
  • Steller’s Jay
  • Swainson’s, Hawk
  • Dark-eyed Junco
  • Red-Winged Blackbird
  • Broad-winged Hawk
  • Eastern Bluebird
  • Eastern Towhee
  • American Goldfinch
  • Northern Harrier
  • Yellow-rumped Warbler
  • Song Sparrow
  • Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
  • Black-Capped Chickadee
  • Brown Pelican
  • American White Ibis
  • Least Tern
  • Piping Plover
  • Red-breasted Nuthatch
  • Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
  • Ruby-crowned Kinglet
  • Red-eyed Vireo
  • Oystercatcher

Backyard Birds:

All-year-round:  White-breasted Nuthatch, Carolina Wren, Mourning Dove , Downy Woodpecker, Northern Cardinal

Migratory Birds:

In Summer: American Crow, Eastern Towhee, Eastern Bluebird , Great Egret, Yellow-crowned Night Heron, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

In Winter: Carolina Chickadee, White-throated Sparrow, Hermit Thrush, Black-eyed Junco, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

Birds That Live on Coasts: Brown Pelican, American White Ibis, Least Tern, Piping Plover, Oystercatcher

Birds of Prey: Northern Harrier, Broad-winged Hawk, Red-Tailed Hawk, Swainson’s, Hawk, Northern Harrier

Common Birds Identification by Color

Blue Birds

  • Eastern Bluebird
  • Blue Jay
  • Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

Black Birds

  • European  Starling.
  • Common Grackle.
  • Red-winged Blackbird
  • Brown-headed Cowbird
  • Boat-tailed Grackle

Red Birds

Yellow Birds

  • Yellow-rumped Warbler
  • Pine Warbler
  • American Goldfinch

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