Discover the 34 Common Birds in Virginia – Their Characteristics and How To Identify

Common Birds in Virginia

Virginia is a lovely place to go for bird watching. Being the first state to set up a system of statewide wildlife and birding trails, they also included diverse ecological systems in that network. For bird watchers, Virginia is an amazing location. Virginia offers a wide range of environments that are home to various species of birds. Virginia has plenty to offer, whether you’re an avid birdwatcher or enjoy the occasional sighting.

Though Virginia is a small region, this is the place of amusement for numerous well-known birds, including the Chickahominy River Marsh, Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, and The Great Dismal Swamp. Flying Squirrel, which is federally threatened, as well as 58 other bird species, are found in the Great Dismal Swamp. The most common bird in Virginia is Northern Cardinal. This one is Virginia’s official state bird. Virginia is a secure home for many different species of birds as well. 

In this article, we will take a look at the 34 most common birds in Virginia. So get ready to explore the birds in Virginia!

1. American Robin

American Robin bird

American Robin is one of the most well-known birds in Virginia. In the backyard or Local Park is the place for American Robin. It runs over the lawn and searches for earthworms. They could vanish from the backyard in the winter, but they are still staying there. Naturally, they live everywhere but love to inhabit near the human and are frequently seen in the backyard.


  • A magnificent swallow with a black head and back and a bright radish breast.
  • A white throat and white spots around the eyes.
  • Female birds are quite lighter than male robins.

American Robins rarely visit bird feeders because they don’t love eating seeds. Moreover, they love to eat worms, insects, snails, etc. this bird makes their nest near the human. Robins are the most attractive bird for their early appearance at the end of the winter, warm orange breasts, and cheery songs. 

2. Downy Woodpecker

Downy Woodpecker bird

The downy woodpecker has some differences from the traditional woodpecker. They have a blocky head with wide shoulders and sharp postures as they push away from tree limbs and into their tail feathers. Their beak is straight and strong. This one’s beak is smaller than another woodpecker’s. The downy woodpecker loves to eat tiny insects, nuts, berries, and seeds. To attract downy woodpecker feeder fills the sunflower seed and crushed corn.


  • These woodpeckers are little and have tiny bills.
  • Their backs are almost black with white streaks and spots.
  • The color of their belly is white.
  • Male woodpeckers have a unique red patch over the head which is not seen in female woodpeckers.

The most common type of bird in Virginia is the downy woodpecker. These birds are seen in every backyard.

3. Hairy Woodpecker

Hairy Woodpecker bird

Hairy woodpeckers are the most common birds in Virginia and are seen yearly for inspection. They stayed in the established woods with a park, forest, and backyard. They take place in the freshly burned forest. They live anywhere where big trees are found. The most common call is a fast and sudden “peek.” Its sound is lower pitch than a downy woodpecker. They also make a harsh quacking or rustling sound.


  • Hairy Woodpeckers are distinguished by their striped heads and straight-backed postures while sitting on trees.
  • These woodpeckers have a long bill.
  •  Male woodpeckers have a red patch over the head which is absent from female woodpeckers.

Hairy woodpeckers look as same as downy woodpeckers. Identifying both of them has to be a little bit tricky. Their posture and bill are made a difference between them. 

4. American Goldfinch

American Goldfinch bird

The American goldfinch is a more colorful bird in Virginia, seen in the backyard. Unlike other birds, they love to take Nyjer seeds and sunflower kernels—this bird is exclusively vegetarian, which is rare in the bird world.


  •  In summer, male American Goldfinch turned into a bright yellow color with blackheads and black wings. Females have gloomier yellow and no crown on their heads.
  •  Both are turned into an olive shade in winter. Their black wing and white wing bar separated them from others.

5. House Sparrow 

House Sparrow bird

The House sparrow is the most common bird in Virginia. They love to stay near human residences. They like to eat seeds, cracked corn, etc.


  • Males have chestnuts on the sides of their faces and neck, white cheeks, black bibs, and grey crowns over the Head—back portion dominated by brown color with black stripes.
  • Females are faded yellow colored with black stripes on their backside. The color of the lower portion is brown. The tan patch that extends behind their eye helps to identify them. 

6. House Finch

House Finch bird

A House finch is a very curious bird, and these are the first bird that discovers new bird feeders. They love to travel alone. So it’s helpful for another bird to find out new feeders. This bird is common in Virginia near the people.


  • Matured males colored in rosy red around their heads and the upper portion of their breasts. On their back, tail, and belly, brown streaks can be noticed.
  • They have pointed tails and curved beaks designed to bite seeds for both sexes.

7. American Crow

American Crow

The American crow is very common and an adaptable bird everywhere.


  • A large bird that is entirely black with a glossy shine
  • The long bill, legs, and feet all are black. 

8. Song Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Song sparrow sings a beautiful song across the region. This is the specialty of this bird. It is difficult to identify Song’s sparrow because all sparrows appear almost the same.


  • The chest has brown strips that cover near the breast area.
  • The head has a crown with brown colored and grey stripes down the middle.
  • The majority of the back portion and body are rust-brown with scattered gray stripes.

9. White-breasted Nuthatch

White-breasted Nuthatch bird

This bird has fabulous vocals, which make it different from others. They love to eat high-quality food and try to avoid mixed food.


  • Males and females both are almost similar to look.
  • The top of the male’s head is covered with a black cap.
  • Female crowns are lighter and grey.

10. Red-winged Blackbird

Red-winged Blackbird

Red-winged blackbird spends most of their time in a grassy area and farm field. However, during the breeding season, they are found in wet areas.


  • Males are black almost except for the bright yellow and red patches on their shoulders.
  • Females are brown, heavily striped, and have a little yellow color in their bill area.
  • Both have a pointed bill and usually take rest on cattails or on the long trees to look after their territories.

11. European Starling

European Starling bird

They can adapt to human development. They eat almost anything which they find.


  • A most common bird in Virginia. Size almost like the American Robin.
  • Their feathers are black and look to be polished.
  • Sharp long bill with a short tail.
  • Matured have a greenish tint and are a deeper shade of black.
  • In the winter, starlings lose their shine; their beaks are darkened and get white patches all over their bodies. 

12. Brown-headed Cowbird

Brown-headed Cowbird

This bird is the most common in Virginia and there. But they are expanding their range to help human development.


  • Males are fully black all over the body except their brown HeadHead.
  • Under low light, it isn’t easy to understand that their head is brown.

Females are simply brown. They have some stripes and black eyes.

13. House Wren

House Wren bird

They never go searching for bird feeders. They love to eat insects from house yards.


  • A House wren is a tiny, brown bird.
  • Their tail is short, their beak is tiny, and their wings and tail color is black.
  • Male and female both are same looking. 

14. Mourning Dove

Mourning Dove bird

Most common and familiar bird in Virginia. They need a flat place to eat.


  • Dove is grey with long and narrow wings and huge black marks.
  • They have pink legs, a black bill, and a great blue eye ring.
  • Both are the same in their appearance. 

15. Rock Pigeon

Rock Pigeon bird

An extremely common bird in Virginia but exclusively found in urban areas. Bird feeders are attracted by it easily.


  • The rock pigeon is a little bit heavy than other birds. Its legs are short, and its beak is narrow and has a tiny head.
  • Normally, the pigeon’s back portion is grey, and the HeadHead is blue, grey, and black with two black wing bars.
  • The color of their feathers varies greatly; some common verities are seen between all white to rusty brown.

16. Northern Cardinal

Northern Cardinal bird

Of its beautiful color, the northern cardinal is the most popular bird in Virginia.


  • Males are significantly red with black faces and necks.
  • The female’s head is red, along with wings and tails. The whole body is radish brown.
  • The crest over the head is visible for both of them. They have a short and sharp bill to collect their seeds to eat. 

17. Blue Jay

Blue Jay bird

Blue jay has a strong personality which is very attractive. Their high intelligence makes people interested in observing themselves.


  • The whole back part is covered with beautiful blue feathers and black streaks. The color of the underparts is white.
  • Their head is surrounded by a black choker and has crowned with a blue crest.
  • Appearances are the same for both of them.

18. Tufted Titmouse

Tufted Titmouse bird

 This bird is common in forests, parks, and backyards of Virginia.


  • The bird is grey with the crest on top of their HeadHead, white underparts, and a peachy tint on the side.
  • Big and dark eyes with a big forehead.
  • They have the same appearance both of them. 

19. Common Grackle

Common Grackle bird

The common grackle is a more resourceful bird in Virginia. They love eating different seeds, fish, insects, fruits, corn, garbage, etc.


  • This bird has a long tail and down curve long bill. Large flocks of chattering birds that gather in trees high above.
  • Under the actual light male looks mostly black with a blue HeadHead and bronze body.
  • Females are the same but less glossy than male birds.

20. Pileated Woodpecker

Pileated Woodpecker bird

They are found in forest areas. They search for their feed from wood.


  • These birds are huge and mostly black. Some white stripes are seen on their face and neck.
  • Large triangle crests are seen over their head.
  • Red stripes are seen in the male. On the other hand, black stripes are seen in females. 

21. Red-bellied Woodpecker

Red-bellied Woodpecker bird

They love to visit in the backyard. Their main food is seeds item.


  • Males have red color from their beak to back.
  • Females have only red color on the back side of the neck. 

22. Eastern Bluebird

Eastern Bluebird

This bird looks pretty and popular in Virginia.


  • Male bluebirds are recognized because of their bright blue color and red chest and neck.
  • Females are almost the same, but the color is lighter than males.

 23. Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Ruby-throated Hummingbird

During the summer season, this bird is common in Virginia.


  • A medium-sized male hummingbird with a black front face that reaches below the eyes, a chin, and a bright red neck. The rear portion and top of the HeadHead are green in color. The lower portion is pale grey, and the belly sides are green.
  • Females are less bright than males. White with light green color stripes are seen on the cheeks and throat. Their tummy has fluffy wings with white, and the back side is green. 

24. Baltimore Oriole

Baltimore Oriole bird

This bird is found in open areas like riverside and woodland.


  • Males are easily detected for their beautiful collaboration of orange, black, and white wing bars. This bird is one of the most common and attractive birds in Virginia.
  • Though a female bird’s color is pale than a male bird, it is attracted its way. 

25. Chipping Sparrow

Chipping Sparrow

It songs loud and thrilled, making them distinguish themselves from others.


  • Some are brightly colored with rusty crowns, grey bellies, and black strip eye lines.
  • The rest are pale brownish in the crown, belly with grey color, unstriped neck, and belly.
  • Thin long tail and medium-sized bill are seen in both of them.

26. Dark-eyed Junco

Dark-eyed Junco bird

While breeding, they are found in pine forests. In winter, they roam in the parks, backyards, and fields, woodland.


  • Pitchy grey colored with a smooth and soft belly.
  • Bill’s size is a small, long tail with white outer feathers.
  • Color patterns depend on the various region. 

27. Pine Siskin

Pine Siskin

It’s typically found in the evergreen forest but roams among the parks, fields, and backyard to search for food.


  • The wings and tails are tiny, dark, and striped, with thin golden borders for both.
  • Sharp and short bill, long pointed wingtips and forked tail.
  • In Virginia, this is the only wren that has gender-neutral appearances.

28. Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Rose-breasted Grosbeak bird

It’s well-known for its Song. Its Song is similar to American Robin.


  • It has a large and triangular bill. Size almost the same as the American robin.
  • White breasts with red patches and black color in the back and wings are seen for males.
  • Females are highly striped, their bill is lighter than males, and they have white eyebrows. 

29. White-throated Sparrow

White-throated Sparrow

They always visit for bird feeders. People can attract them by offering sunflower seeds or any other seeds.


  • The colors of this bird vary from grey to tan in its fluffy body.
  • The head has a yellow patch with black and white streaks between the eyes.
  • The face is grey, with a white throat patch and a tiny bill. 

30. Gray Catbird

Gray Catbird

A mostly common bird in Virginia.


  • Except for their black crown, almost grey. 

31. Northern Mockingbird

Northern Mockingbird

Bold personalities are seen among them. They eat from bird feeders.


  • The size is medium, and the color is grey. This songbird has a long and thin tail.
  • When it’s flying, its white wing patches might be seen. 

32. Red-breasted Nuthatch

Red-breasted Nuthatch bird

They have a beautiful voice for Song.


  • No neck is visible in this bird
  • A very short tail was seen.

33. Carolina Wren

Carolina Wren

They are the most common bird, but for their secretive nature, people can only find there a little.


  • A vibrant reddish-brown with a white neck and eye line is seen in this type of wren.
  • Large and narrow bills are found here.
  • Both are in the same appearance. 

34. Boat-tailed Grackle 

Boat-tailed Grackle bird

They take advantage of humans for their food. People can identify them for their loud voices.


  • These species have long and flexible legs with large pointed beaks.
  • V-shaped tail
  • Males are almost black with shiny
  • Females are completely different. The lower portion is pale brown breast, and the upper is dark brown.

Final Thoughts

Virginia has various bird species, from the majestic Bald Eagle to the colorful Wood Duck. Whether you’re an avid birder or enjoy observing wildlife, there’s something for everyone in this state.

Remember to provide food and shelter for the birds in your backyard, and always practice responsible birdwatching techniques. With some patience and binoculars, you can discover some truly amazing avian creatures in Virginia.

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