15 Common Birds in Illinois (With Pictures)

Last Updated on January 26, 2023 by Lily Aldrin

Illinois may be known for its bustling cities and vast farmlands, but did you know that it’s also home to a wide variety of bird species?

From the colorful House Sparrow to the elusive Northern Cardinal, the Prairie State offers ample opportunities for birdwatching.

Illinois is home to 450 different bird species.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at some of the most interesting birds in Illinois and where to find them.

Whether you’re a seasoned birder or just starting to explore the world of avian wildlife, come along as we discover the avian gems of Illinois.

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House Sparrow

House Sparrow

  • Scientific Name: Passer domesticus
  • Length: 7 – 8 inches (18 – 20 cm)
  • Weight: 1.1 – 1.5 oz (30 – 42 g)
  • Wingspan: 11 – 12 inches (28 – 30 cm)
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American Robin

American Robin

  • Scientific Name: Turdus migratorius
  • Length: 9 – 11 inches (23 – 28 cm)
  • Weight: 2.4 – 3.5 oz (68 – 99 g)
  • Wingspan: 12 – 16 inches (30 – 41 cm)
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Downy Woodpecker

Downy Woodpecker

  • Scientific Name: Dryobates pubescens
  • Length: 6 – 7 inches (15 – 18 cm)
  • Weight: 1 – 1.4 oz (28 – 40 g)
  • Wingspan: 9 – 10 inches (23 – 25 cm)
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European Starling

European Starling

  • Scientific Name: Sturnus vulgaris
  • Length: 8.3 – 9.8 inches (21 – 25 cm)
  • Weight: 2.1 – 3.5 oz (60 – 100 g)
  • Wingspan: 17 – 20 inches (43 – 50 cm)
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White-breasted Nuthatch

White-breasted Nuthatch

  • Scientific Name: Sitta carolinensis
  • Length: 4.5 – 5 inches (11 – 13 cm)
  • Weight: 0.9 – 1.2 oz (25 – 34 g)
  • Wingspan: 7 – 8 inches (18 – 20 cm)
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Blue Jay

Blue Jay

  • Scientific Name: Cyanocitta cristata
  • Length: 9.8 – 11.8 inches (25 – 30 cm)
  • Weight: 2.5 – 3.5 oz (70 – 100 g)
  • Wingspan: 12.2 – 15 inches (31 – 38 cm)
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Song Sparrow

Song Sparrow

  • Scientific Name: Melospiza melodia
  • Length: 6.7 – 7.5 inches (17 – 19 cm)
  • Weight: 1 – 1.5 oz (28 – 42 g)
  • Wingspan: 8.7 – 10.6 inches (22 – 27 cm)
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American Crow

American Crow

  • Scientific Name: Corvus brachyrhynchos
  • Length: 17 – 21 inches (43 – 53 cm)
  • Weight: 12 – 24 oz (340 – 680 g)
  • Wingspan: 39 – 43 inches (99 – 109 cm)
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Northern Cardinal

Northern Cardinal

  • Scientific Name: Cardinalis cardinalis
  • Length: 8.3 – 9 inches (21 – 23 cm)
  • Weight: 2.6 – 3.5 oz (74 – 99 g)
  • Wingspan: 11 – 13 inches (28 – 33 cm)
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Mourning Dove

Mourning Dove

  • Scientific Name: Zenaida macroura
  • Length: 12 – 13 inches (30 – 33 cm)
  • Weight: 4 – 5 oz (113 – 142 g)
  • Wingspan: 17 – 19 inches (43 – 48 cm)
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Common Grackle

Common Grackle

  • Scientific Name: Quiscalus quiscula
  • Length: 11 – 12 inches (28 – 30 cm)
  • Weight: 2.8 – 4 oz (79 – 113 g)
  • Wingspan: 16 – 20 inches (41 – 51 cm)
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House Finch

House Finch

  • Scientific Name: Haemorhous mexicanus
  • Length: 5 – 6 inches (13 – 15 cm)
  • Weight: 0.5 – 1 oz (14 – 28 g)
  • Wingspan: 8 – 9 inches (20 – 23 cm)
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Red-bellied Woodpecker

Red-bellied Woodpecker

  • Scientific Name: Melanerpes carolinus
  • Length: 9 – 10 inches (23 – 26 cm)
  • Weight: 2.5 – 3.5 oz (70 – 100 g)
  • Wingspan: 13 – 16 inches (33 – 41 cm)
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Black-capped Chickadee

Black-capped Chickadee

  • Scientific Name: Poecile atricapillus
  • Length: 4 – 5 inches (10 – 13 cm)
  • Weight: 0.5 – 0.7 oz (14 – 20 g)
  • Wingspan: 7 – 8 inches (18 – 20 cm)
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American Goldfinch

American Goldfinch

  • Scientific Name: Spinus tristis
  • Length: 4.3 – 5 inches (11 – 13 cm)
  • Weight: 0.5 – 0.7 oz (14 – 20 g)
  • Wingspan: 7 – 8 inches (18 – 20 cm)
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If you don’t have the time to read the whole article, check out this video for a quick understanding.

Common Birds in Illionis

1. House Sparrow

House Sparrow

Europe introduced the House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) in the 1800s.

This sparrow may be found in both urban and rural areas. It is considered a pest.

Compared to other finches, the House Finch’s size is comparable to that of the Dark-Eyed Junco’s.  

Its bill is conical and short. Male House Sparrows are brown and grey, with a black mask.

Females are tan and brown, with a faint line behind the eye and no black mask.

The length of House Sparrows ranges from 16 to 18 cm (6.3 to 7.1 inches).

They weigh between 20 and 30 grams (0.7 to 1.1 oz).

Their wingspan is between 25 and 27 cm (9.8 and 10.6 inches).

They are filthy and voracious eaters, and they may be seen in big loud, chattering flocks. They are militant to other feeding birds.

Grain, seed, and insects are their preferred foods.

During the summer, they travel north across Canada to Southern Alaska. Starting from the Middle East, they spread over much of Europe and Asia.

They may be found in nearly every nation with a sizable population, including Australia and Africa.

Below are the characteristics of the House Sparrow,

Scientific Name Passer domesticus
Length 7 – 8 inches (18 – 20 cm)
Weight 1.1 – 1.5 oz (30 – 42 g)
Wingspan 11 – 12 inches (28 – 30 cm)
Habitat Urban and suburban areas, as well as agricultural land
Food seeds, fruits, insects, and waste grain

2. American Robin

American Robin

In the north, American Robin (Turdus migratorius) is a well-known bird that is a year-round resident, whereas, in the south, it is a periodic visitor.

This is an important species to compare to an unknown bird.

This bird is about the same size as a Blue Jay or a Scrub-Jay in all directions, including the tail.

This bird is Bigger than the Red-winged Blackbird, Larger than an American kestrel.

The length of American robins ranges from 23 to 28 cm (9 to 11 inches).

They weigh between 58 and 65 grams (2.0 and 2.3 oz).

Their wingspan is between 33 and 35 cm (13 and 14 inches).

Shape: A chubby creature with a lengthy tail.

Bill: It’s long and slender with a rounded end. The upper parts are grey-brown, with a reddish-orange breast.

Open areas include woodlands, farming, city parks, and lawns, Breeds in Alaska and Canada along a migratory path.

Most of the United States is where you’ll find me (lower 48). They spent the winters in the United States and Central America, Hop around your yard looking for food and turning their head this way and that.

Their caroling melody is a sure sign of spring in the north.

The grass is full of worms and other creatures. Fruit from a tray feeder or the ground is also an acceptable source of food.

They should consume small berries found on trees and bushes.

Below are the characteristics of the American Robin,

Scientific Name Turdus migratorius
Length 9 – 11 inches (23 – 28 cm)
Weight 2.4 – 3.5 oz (68 – 99 g)
Wingspan 12 – 16 inches (30 – 41 cm)
Habitat Woodlands, forests, fields, and gardens
Food worms, insects, fruits, and berries
Read:  15 Common Birds in Georgia (with Pictures)

3. Downy Woodpecker

Downy Woodpecker

This Downy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens) may be found throughout the United States except not found in southwest deserts.

They are similar in size but have shorter tails than a White-crowned Sparrow.

Their size is more than a Junco or House Finch but smaller than Red-winged Blackbird.

The length of Downy Woodpeckers ranges from 6.3 to 7.5 inches (16 to 19 cm).

They weigh between 0.9 and 1.4 oz (25 to 40 g).

Their wingspan is between 9.8 and 11.8 inches (25 to 30 cm).

They are stocky, with a big head and a stiff, short tail.

Their bill is chisel-shaped and short. To identify them, look for their black and white striped pattern on the head, white spots on the underbelly of their dark wings, and a black tail with white outer tail feathers and black bars or dots on the rear. 

The back of the male’s skull has a tiny red patch.

The small deciduous trees, willows, and even weed stocks like teasel, especially near water, are all excellent places to look for a Downy woodpecker.

Their males are more likely to be present in more small plants and twigs, whereas females are more likely to be present on tree trunks.

Insects, fruits, and seeds, especially black oil sunflower seeds, are their preferred foods.

They pick and eat arthropods from tree bark and use a suet feeder.

Below are the characteristics of the Downy Woodpecker,

Scientific Name Dryobates pubescens
Length 6 – 7 inches (15 – 18 cm)
Weight 1 – 1.4 oz (28 – 40 g)
Wingspan 9 – 10 inches (23 – 25 cm)
Habitat Wooded areas, including forests, parks, and gardens
Food insects, spiders, and berries

4. European Starling

European Starling

European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) arrived in North America in the late 1800s and has spread across the continent since then. 

It measures about 8.5 inches from the bill top to the tail tip.

The White-crowned Sparrow and the Spotted/Eastern Towhee are more prominent, almost the same size as a Red-winged Blackbird.

It is stocky, with a big head and a short, squared-ended tail with long legs and a sharp-tipped dark-colored bill that is as long as a head.

Their bill is yellow in the spring season and remains dark for the rest of the year.

They are greyish brown most of the year, with glossy iridescence and white spotting in the spring.

They are lowland birds that require large enough trees for making a nest and enough open space for eating.

They are ubiquitous in cities and suburbs, where they may find food and artificial nesting.

Summer migration takes them north via Canada and Alaska, although their natural habitat is Europe to Pakistan and the northern African country of Algeria.

Starlings are typically considered a problem because they harass other backyard birds, snatching bird feeders and nest holes from smaller native birds.

They may create millions and millions of flocks in the winter.

When insects are accessible, they mainly feed on insects.

By never allowing them to use your backyard hopper and tray feeders, you can keep them away.

Below are the characteristics of the European Starling,

Scientific Name Sturnus vulgaris
Length 8.3 – 9.8 inches (21 – 25 cm)
Weight 2.1 – 3.5 oz (60 – 100 g)
Wingspan 17 – 20 inches (43 – 50 cm)
Habitat forests, grasslands, and urban areas
Food insects, fruits, seeds, and nectar

5. White-breasted Nuthatch

White-breasted Nuthatch

The White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) is a little bird with a white breast.

People like it for its lively antics and bravery. It is the biggest nuthatch in North America, despite its tiny size.

The length is about the same as a chickadee, a smaller Junco, or a House Finch.

The length of White-breasted Nuthatches ranges from 4.3 to 5.1 inches (11 to 13 cm).

They weigh between 0.7 to 1.1 oz (20 to 30 g).

Their wingspan is between 7.1 to 8.7 inches (18 to 22 cm).

It is large-headed, neckless, and has very short tails and legs.

Its bill is almost as long as his head, straight, and slim.

It is blue-grey from the top and white from the bottom. Cap, wingtips, and tail are all black. Near the tail’s base are several rusted-colored feathers.

It commonly resides in Oak and oak-pine forests, as well as forested cities. 

This little bird is found throughout the United States, southern Canada, and the central Mexican highlands except in the west, which has land devoid of trees and grasses.

It crawls across tree branches and down tree trunks head-first in pursuit of insects.

Insects, seeds, especially black oil sunflower seeds, acorns, and other nuts are preferred food. 

It feeds on hopper and tray feeders.

Below are the characteristics of the White-breasted Nuthatch,

Scientific Name Sitta carolinensis
Length 4.5 – 5 inches (11 – 13 cm)
Weight 0.9 – 1.2 oz (25 – 34 g)
Wingspan 7 – 8 inches (18 – 20 cm)
Habitat deciduous and mixed woodlands, suburban and urban parks, gardens
Food mostly insects, spiders, seeds, and nuts

6. Blue Jay

Blue Jay

In the eastern United States, the Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata) is a common and well-known bird.

In terms of size, it’s about comparable to an American Robin. It is fluffy with a big crested head and a long tail.

Its legs are large and powerful, while the bill is dark, tall, and hefty.

The length of an adult Blue Jay ranges from 9 – 12 inches (23 – 30 cm).

Their weight can vary, but on average they weigh around 2.5 ounces (70 – 75 g).

The wingspan of a Blue Jay is typically around 13 – 17 inches (33 – 43 cm).

Its color is blue from the top and white from the bottom, the neck collar is black, and the wing has white patches.

It resides in the woodlands and cities in the eastern part of the United States.  In the summer, it travels to southern Canada.

It is a bold and expressive bird and can harass smaller birds.

Jays eat a lot of food all at once and store it in their crop for later use.

They then take it off and bury food in a secret stash.

Below are the characteristics of the Blue Jay,

Scientific Name Cyanocitta cristata
Length 9.8 – 11.8 inches (25 – 30 cm)
Weight 2.5 – 3.5 oz (70 – 100 g)
Wingspan 12.2 – 15 inches (31 – 38 cm)
Habitat Woodlands, forests, suburban and urban areas
Food omnivores

7. Song Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia) is a common bird that looks like a lot of other streaking brown sparrows.

This tiny bird looks the same in size as a House Finch or a junco.

Chickadees and goldfinches are smaller, while White-crowned Sparrows and Spotted/Eastern towhees are more significant than a song sparrow.

It is plump with a round head and a long rounded tail, and a short conical bill.

It is pretty varied in terms of color in darkness, from dark rusty to pale grey.

It is grey-brown from the top with dark brown striping on the back and complicated head patterns.

The side and breast streaking converge in a thick center breast patch.

It resides in the thickets, particularly those near the water shrubs.

You may find it mainly in the western US, southern Alaska, and the northeastern US.

Read:  When Do Baby Birds Leave the Nest?

Summer is when it extends over the center of Canada and the northern half of the US.

It may be observed over the lower 48 states of the US in the winter. In central Mexico, there is also a population.

They forage on the ground and are seldom far from low cover, which they would flee to if alarmed.

Their favorite foods are tiny seeds and insects found near the ground.

Below are the characteristics of the Song Sparrow,

Scientific Name Melospiza melodia
Length 6.7 – 7.5 inches (17 – 19 cm)
Weight 1 – 1.5 oz (28 – 42 g)
Wingspan 8.7 – 10.6 inches (22 – 27 cm)
Habitat wetlands, grasslands, brushy fields, and suburban gardens
Food seeds, fruits, and insects

8. American Crow

American Crow

American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos) is a Bigger all-black bird may be seen in cities as well as rural areas.

It is a member of the Corvid family, which also includes ravens, magpies, and Blue Jays

Its distinctive cawing call is well-known to most people.

They vary a lot in their sizes, but the average is about 17.5 inches from bill top to tail tip.

The length of an adult American Crow ranges from 17 – 21 inches (43 – 53 cm).

Their weight can vary, but on average they weigh around 12 ounces (340 g).

The wingspan of an American Crow is typically around 39 – 43 inches (99 – 109 cm).

Blackbirds and grackles are smaller in size than an American Crow, while they are smaller than ravens.

They have a thick neck, a big head, and a square-ended tail that is relatively short, and their legs are longer.

Their wingtips are rounded, and each primary feather is separated from the others, producing a finger-like structure.

They have a long, thick, black beak that extends to their chin. They’re a shiny black hue.

They favor vast areas with trees, such as fields, farms, and cities to reside.

Except for the dry Southwest, they may be found across the United States except in the lower 48 states. During the summer, they migrate to southern Canada.

They assemble in immense flocks, sometimes numbering in the thousands, and then depart for the surrounding region at daybreak.

They are omnivorous and eat giant insects, grain, small animals, and carrion.

These vast, completely blackbirds are probably not what you want in your garden.

Below are the characteristics of the American Crow,

Scientific Name Corvus brachyrhynchos
Length 17 – 21 inches (43 – 53 cm)
Weight 12 – 24 oz (340 – 680 g)
Wingspan 39 – 43 inches (99 – 109 cm)
Habitat forests, fields, and urban areas
Food insects, earthworms, fruits, berries, seeds, small invertebrates, small mammals

9. Northern Cardinal

Northern Cardinal

Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) is a common backyard bird on the east coast of the United States.

Cardinals are slightly smaller than American Robins, resembling Red-winged Blackbirds in size.

The length of a Northern Cardinal is 8.3 – 9.1 inches (21 – 23 cm), its Weight is 2.5-3.5 oz (70 – 99 g) and its Wingspan is 11.8 – 12.2 inches (30 – 31 cm)

Shape: Plump body with a full tail that is rather lengthy. The crest is wispy.

Bill: Pink, short, hefty, conical. Few other birds have the same brilliant red hue as this bird.

Face in black. The female is greyer but has traces of crimson in her wings and tail, as well as a crest.

Cardinals live on shrubby woodland margins throughout the year, from the eastern United States through Texas and Arizona, and south into Mexico.

Seeds are chewed with the big conical bill. Watch them split open sunflower seeds with their mouths, spit away from the hulls, and then pluck the kernel. Sunflower seeds with black oil.

In bigger hoppers or tray feeders, they can find various seeds, berries, and nuts.

Below are the characteristics of the Northern Cardinal,

Scientific Name Cardinalis cardinalis
Length 8.3 – 9 inches (21 – 23 cm)
Weight 2.6 – 3.5 oz (74 – 99 g)
Wingspan 11 – 13 inches (28 – 33 cm)
Habitat woodlands, forests, swamps, and suburban areas
Food seeds, fruits, insects, spiders, and even small snails

10. Mourning Dove

Mourning Dove

In the Lower 48 states of the United States, Mourning Doves (Zenaida macroura) are the most widespread backyard bird, and their mournful cooing is a well-known spring birdsong.

It is about 12 inches long.

The Northern Flicker is the same in size as a mourning dove.

It is nearly double in size of an American Robin and a bit little smaller than the domestic city pigeon.

They have a tiny, spherical head on a large, plump body.

Their tail is long and slender with a pointed tip, and their legs are thin.

Their bill is small and lean.

Their body is a dull brown-pink, with darker wings and tails with white borders.

They prefer urban regions, farmlands, woodlands, and other semi-open spaces to live in.

They are generally spotted perched on wires and fences.

They spend most of their time in the lower 48 states and Mexico; however, some migrate north for the winter.

Black oil sunflower seeds are a favorite meal of Mourning Doves, as are other types of seeds.

Below are the characteristics of the Mourning Dove,

Scientific Name Zenaida macroura
Length 12 – 13 inches (30 – 33 cm)
Weight 4 – 5 oz (113 – 142 g)
Wingspan 17 – 19 inches (43 – 48 cm)
Habitat woodlands, deserts, grasslands, and suburban areas
Food seeds

11. Common Grackle

Common Grackle

Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula) is longer and lankier than blackbirds.

They are often considered pests to crops.

They are somewhat larger than Red-winged Blackbirds and about the same size as Mourning Doves.

They have long bodies with a full keel-shaped tails, long legs, and flat crowns.

Their sturdy pointed bill is longer than their head.

They are glossy black with a golden or green tinge on the head and the eyes are yellow.

Agricultural regions, forest margins, municipal parks, and lawns are all places where they may be found.

They are mainly residing in the southeast of the United States. During the summer, they go to the mid-west and north-central United States and Canada.

They have a stronghold on feeders and threaten other birds.

Grain, maize, acorns, tiny aquatic fish, and amphibians are their preferred foods.

You can use tube feeders instead of hopper or tray feeders to inhibit them.

Don’t overfeed, and pick up spilled seed.

Below are the characteristics of the Common Grackle,

Scientific Name Quiscalus quiscula
Length 11 – 12 inches (28 – 30 cm)
Weight 2.8 – 4 oz (79 – 113 g)
Wingspan 16 – 20 inches (41 – 51 cm)
Habitat woodlands, marshes, fields, and suburban areas
Food insects, seeds, fruits, berries, and even small fish

12. House Finch

House Finch

Initially a Western bird, they may now find it across the United States.

Some more species of red finch exist, and those are the ones most commonly encountered in urban areas.

This is a crucial species to compare to an unfamiliar bird. From bill top to tail tip, it’s about 6 inches long.

They are smaller than Goldfinches and chickadees but smaller than White-crowned Sparrows and Spotted/Eastern towhees in size.

They have long pointed tails. With a round head, their bill is short and conical.

They have brown and grey upperparts with light underparts that are streaked.

Read:  10 Most Prettiest and Beautiful Birds in the World

Their males’ chairs, breasts, and rump are red, orange, or yellow.

Their small flocks can be seen on wires, on treetops, and in shrubs.

Originally they were most common in deserts and grasslands but now in rural and urban regions.

Initially found throughout western North America and Mexico.

Then brought to the northeastern United States, it is now present in virtually every state in the lower 48 and extreme southern Canada but rare from Dakotas to Texas and south Florida.

Male House Finches chirp a fast, wiry song in buzzy notes all year.

House Finches are not communal, although males sing all year.

Sunflower seeds and tube feeders are their favorite foods, but they may also eat thistle socks.

Below are the characteristics of the House Finch,

Scientific Name Haemorhous mexicanus
Length 5 – 6 inches (13 – 15 cm)
Weight 0.5 – 1 oz (14 – 28 g)
Wingspan 8 – 9 inches (20 – 23 cm)
Habitat woodlands, forests, deserts, and suburban areas
Food seeds

13. Red-bellied Woodpecker

Red-bellied Woodpecker

In the eastern portion of the United States, Red-bellied Woodpecker (Melanerpes carolinus) is one of the most abundant species.

For a backyard bird, it’s enormous. It has a size between the size of a Starling and an American Robin.

It’s smaller than a Northern Flicker. It has a muscular body with a big head and a short tail.

It adheres to a tree stem with a fast, stiff back and powerful short legs. It has chisel-shaped and long bill.

They have a soft grey body with several thin black-and-white bands over the back and wings.

Their male has a red nape that extends forward on the crown.

These birds live in a variety of habitats, including oak and pine forests.

They may be found from the eastern slope of the Rocky Mountains in the lower 48 states, from Texas to the extreme south of Canada, and east of Florida northward only to the southern boundary of the New England states.

It sticks to the tree trunk and branches in a classic woodpecker way.

This bird consumes insects and nuts, peanuts from a tray feeder, and a suet block.

Below are the characteristics of the Red-bellied Woodpecker,

Scientific Name Melanerpes carolinus
Length 9 – 10 inches (23 – 26 cm)
Weight 2.5 – 3.5 oz (70 – 100 g)
Wingspan 13 – 16 inches (33 – 41 cm)
Habitat deciduous and mixed woodlands, suburban and urban parks, gardens
Food insects, spiders, fruits, berries, and nuts

14. Black-capped Chickadee

Black-capped Chickadee

In the northern portion of the United States, Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) is a common backyard bird.

Chickadees are tiny birds that are similar in size to American Goldfinches.

They have spherical, with a large round head and a long tail with a rounded tip.

Their bill is short, sturdy, and straight.

They are grey from the top and buffy from the bottom.

Their cap and bib are black, with a white lower face.

Their wing feathers have white margins.

Overwhelmingly, they’re found throughout Alaska and northern America.

Small groups fly from tree to tree, grabbing insects from twig tips acrobatically.

Chickadees are the mainstay of mixed-species flocks in the winter, including nuthatches, kinglets, creepers, and woodpeckers.

Seeds, insects, and berries are the foods and feeders of choice. Tube, hopper, and tray feeders are their preferred methods of feeding.

Their select foods are black oil, sunflower seeds, and suet.

Below are the characteristics of the Black-capped Chickadee,

Scientific Name Poecile atricapillus
Length 4 – 5 inches (10 – 13 cm)
Weight 0.5 – 0.7 oz (14 – 20 g)
Wingspan 7 – 8 inches (18 – 20 cm)
Habitat deciduous and mixed woodlands, suburban and urban parks, gardens
Food insects, spiders, seeds, fruits, and berries

15. American Goldfinch

American Goldfinch

American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis) is a lovely little bird with vivid yellow summer plumage that many people are familiar with.

It’s also known as a wild canary.

This is an important species to compare to an unknown bird.

From the tip of the beak to the tail, this bird is around 5 inches long.

It’s about the same size as a chickadee. Hummingbirds are smaller than these. Juncos and House Finches are smaller.

Shape: Small and chubby, with a big head and a short tail.

Bill: Pink, conical, and blunt.

The males are bright lemon yellow with a black forehead, black wings, and a white barbed tail in the summer.

It has a white underside to its tail cover, which is a distinctive feature.

The males are bright lemon yellow with a black forehead, black wings, and a white barbed tail in the summer.

It has a white underside to its tail cover, which is a distinctive feature.

Females have a drab olive color, with browner wings and tails.

Winter birds have tan and brown wings and tails and are light greyish-yellow in color.

This species can be found in weedy fields and clearings with thistles and other plants.

In the majority of the middle-lower 48 states, it’s visible all year round from coast to coast.

During the summer, it migrates north to the Canadian border.

They may be found from the Canadian border to the Mexican border throughout the winter.

The flying is extremely undulating, rising and sinking in quick spurts as they flap their wings.

They call in flight a lilting 4-part: potato chip, in addition to a lengthy, beautiful lilting melody.

It eats weed seeds and thistle seeds.

They may eat black oil sunflower seeds from the tube feeder.

Nyjer seed in a thistle sock feeder is their favorite.

Below are the characteristics of the American Goldfinch,

Scientific Name Spinus tristis
Length 4.3 – 5 inches (11 – 13 cm)
Weight 0.5 – 0.7 oz (14 – 20 g)
Wingspan 7 – 8 inches (18 – 20 cm)
Habitat woodlands, fields, gardens and suburban areas
Food seeds

Conclusion

In conclusion, Illinois is home to a diverse array of bird species, with 15 common birds that can be found throughout the state.

The birds of Illinois include,

  1. House Sparrow
  2. American Robin
  3. Downy Woodpecker
  4. European Starling
  5. White-breasted Nuthatch
  6. Blue Jay
  7. Song Sparrow
  8. American Crow
  9. Northern Cardinal
  10. Mourning Dove
  11. Common Grackle
  12. House Finch
  13. Red-bellied Woodpecker
  14. Black-capped Chickadee
  15. American Goldfinch

Each of these birds has unique characteristics and can be found in different habitats, making them a joy to watch and learn about.

Illinois’s natural environment offers many opportunities to observe and appreciate these feathered friends, and by understanding their behavior, habitat, and identification, birdwatchers of all levels can enhance their birding experience.

FAQ

What are some common bird species found in Illinois?

Some common bird species found in Illinois include the American robin, blue jay, cardinal, mourning dove, and sparrows.

What is the state bird of Illinois?

The state bird of Illinois is the Northern Cardinal.

When is the best time to see birds in Illinois?

The best time to see birds in Illinois is during the spring and fall migration seasons.

Where are the best places to go birdwatching in Illinois?

Some popular birdwatching spots in Illinois include the Chicago Botanic Garden, the Morton Arboretum, and the Riverlands Migratory Bird Sanctuary.

Are there any endangered bird species found in Illinois?

Yes, there are a few endangered bird species found in Illinois, such as the whooping crane and the Indiana bat.

What can I do to help protect birds in Illinois?

You can help protect birds in Illinois by supporting conservation efforts, participating in citizen science programs, and creating bird-friendly habitats in your backyard.

About Lily Aldrin

I am Lily Aldrin. I attended Cornell University, where I obtained my degree to become an Ornithologist so I could pursue my love of these magnificent creatures in and out of their natural habitats.