10 Amazing Birds That Spend Their Winter in Alabama (2023/2024)

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As winter comes to Alabama, it brings with it some delightful guests—winter birds. While many birds head south to escape the cold, some choose to spend their winters right here in Alabama. These feathered friends add beautiful color and music to the state, making it a haven for bird lovers.

You can easily visit these places to see these winter birds easily. Discover the beautiful winter birds of Alabama! From vibrant American Goldfinches to cheerful Hermit Thrushes, get to know these feathered friends who brighten up the state during the winter season.

American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis):

American Goldfinch
American Goldfinch

The American Goldfinch, often referred to as the “wild canary,” is a small, colorful songbird that stands out with its bright yellow plumage. During the winter months, their vibrant yellow feathers fade to a more subdued olive brown. These finches are commonly seen in open fields and gardens, where they feed on seeds from various plants.

Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis)

Dark-eyed Junco
Dark-eyed Junco

The Dark-eyed Junco is a small sparrow known for its distinct gray plumage and white belly. They are often called “snowbirds” due to their winter presence. These birds forage on the ground and are commonly found in forested areas, gardens, and under bird feeders, where they primarily feed on seeds.

White-throated Sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis)

White-throated Sparrows are easily recognized by the bold white stripes on their head and a white throat patch. They migrate south to Alabama for the winter and prefer shrubby habitats and woodlands. These sparrows are known for their sweet and melodious songs, making them a delight for bird enthusiasts.

Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis)

Northern Cardinal
Northern Cardinal

The Northern Cardinal is one of Alabama’s most iconic winter birds. The males are striking with their vibrant red plumage and black masks. These birds can be found in a wide range of habitats, including forests, gardens, and urban areas, where they feed on seeds, fruits, and insects.

Eastern Bluebird (Sialia sialis)

Eastern Bluebird
Image: Eastern Bluebird

Eastern Bluebirds are a charming sight with their bright blue feathers and rusty orange chest. They often stay in Alabama during the winter, preferring open woodlands, meadows, and farmlands. These cavity-nesting birds are known for their sweet, melodious songs.

Yellow-rumped Warbler: Yellow-rumped Warblers, also known as “butter-butts” due to their yellow rump patch, are common winter visitors in Alabama. They can be spotted in various habitats, including woodlands and marshes. These warblers have a varied diet, feeding on insects, berries, and even suet from bird feeders.

Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula): Ruby-crowned Kinglets are tiny, greenish-gray birds with a concealed patch of vibrant red feathers on their crown. They are active and energetic, often seen flitting about in coniferous forests and mixed woodlands, foraging for insects and small invertebrates.

Pine Warbler (Setophaga pinus): Pine Warblers are medium-sized songbirds with bright yellow plumage. As their name suggests, they are commonly found in pine forests, where they feed on insects and pine seeds. These birds bring a touch of color to the winter landscape.

Cedar Waxwing:

Cedar Waxwing
Image: Cedar Waxwing

Cedar Waxwings are elegant, sleek birds known for their silky, brown plumage, black masks, and vibrant yellow tail tips. They often form large flocks and are drawn to fruit-bearing trees and shrubs, making them a delightful winter sight in Alabama.

Hermit Thrush (Catharus guttatus): Hermit Thrushes are known for their beautiful, melodic songs. They have warm brown plumage and a spotted breast. These birds prefer dense woodlands and are often seen foraging for insects and berries on the forest floor.

These winter birds in Alabama bring a touch of color, song, and diversity to the state’s natural landscapes during the colder months, making them a delight for birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts.

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