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25 Unique Birds That End With the Letter D

Learn about birds that start with all 26 letters of the alphabet!

This odd collection of bird species ranges from the Arabian bustard to the Stitchbird, covering a mix of landscapes and lifestyles from around the world. Though these birds vary widely in where they live and what they do, they come together in this list for one reason: their names all end with the letter D.

1. Arabian bustard

Arabian bustard
Arabian bustard | image by Allan Drewitt via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific Name: Ardeotis arabs

The Arabian bustard is a distinct bird, smaller and sleeker than the kori bustard, with a brown body, gray neck, and a unique white checkered pattern on its wings. These birds are known for their elaborate mating dances, where males puff up and make deep calls to attract females.

They are omnivores, eating plants, insects, and small animals. Adapted to dry habitats, they can live without water for long periods, getting moisture from their food.

2. Anchieta’s sunbird

Anchieta's sunbird
Anchieta’s sunbird | image by Maans Booysen via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 4.0

Scientific Name: Anthreptes anchietae

Anchieta’s sunbird is a colorful bird found in pairs in certain woodlands. Males are bright with blue, red, and yellow feathers, while females are less colorful. They are known for their beautiful singing, including whistles and warbles. These birds feed mostly on nectar but also eat some insects. They play an important role in pollinating flowers in their habitat.

3. Augur buzzard

Augur buzzard
Augur buzzard | image by Lip Kee via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific Name: Buteo augur

The augur buzzard is a large raptor found across eastern and southern Africa, recognized for its striking appearance. Adults typically have a contrasting black and white plumage with a reddish tail, while juveniles are more uniformly brown. These birds are versatile hunters, feeding on a variety of prey including small mammals, birds, and reptiles.

They often perch silently for long periods before swooping down on their prey. Augur buzzards are known for their soaring flight and can be seen gliding on thermals high above the ground. They are solitary or found in pairs, especially during the breeding season when they perform dramatic aerial displays as part of their courtship.

4. Bananal antbird

Scientific Name: Cercomacra ferdinandi

The Bananal antbird is a distinctive bird species found primarily in the Brazilian region of the Araguaia River in the Bananal Island area. This bird stands out for its unique plumage, with males typically exhibiting a darker coloration compared to the females.

It is a ground-dwelling bird, known for its secretive behavior, often staying within dense underbrush near water bodies. The Bananal antbird primarily feeds on insects and is known for its method of foraging, which involves following swarms of army ants to catch prey that is flushed out by the ants’ movement.

5. Bare-faced go-away-bird

Bare-faced go-away-bird
Bare-faced go-away-bird | image by Haplochromis via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY 2.0

Scientific Name: Crinifer personatus

The Bare-faced go-away-bird , notable for its bushy crest and a mostly white head and breast against a backdrop of grey plumage, is native to eastern Africa. This bird is easily identifiable by its single, hollow “khweow” call, which marks its unique presence in its habitat.

Exhibiting noisy and restless behavior, it can be found moving about either singly or in groups, underscoring its social tendencies. The bird primarily feeds on fruits, seeds, and occasionally insects, playing an important role in seed dispersal across its ecosystem.

6. Brown-banded puffbird

Brown-banded puffbird
Brown-banded puffbird | image by Hector Bottai via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 4.0

Scientific Name: Notharchus ordii

The Brown-banded puffbird is a distinctive bird species found in the forests of South America, particularly thriving in the Amazon Basin. Characterized by its stout body, short tail, and large head, this bird has a notable brown band across its breast, which contrasts with its predominantly brown and white plumage.

The puffbird is known for its sit-and-wait hunting strategy, often perching motionlessly for long periods before catching insects or small vertebrates with a quick flight. Its behavior is relatively solitary or seen in pairs, and it is often found in lowland forests, showing a preference for areas near water.

7. Cinnamon hummingbird

Cinnamon Hummingbird | image by Rolf Riethof via Flickr

Scientific Name: Amazilia rutila

The Cinnamon Hummingbird is a vibrant bird species known for its striking cinnamon-brown plumage, which covers most of its body, complemented by a greenish back and tail. This small bird, native to the Pacific coast of Central America, exhibits the typical hummingbird behavior of rapid wing flapping, enabling it to hover in place as it feeds on nectar from flowers.

Its ability to hover is facilitated by a unique figure-eight wing motion, which is characteristic of hummingbirds. The Cinnamon Hummingbird also consumes insects and spiders, providing necessary protein. It is often seen in open habitats such as gardens and forest edges, where it is known to be quite territorial, vigorously defending feeding areas from other hummingbirds.

8. Cozumel emerald

Cozumel emerald
Cozumel emerald | image by dfaulder via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific Name: Cynanthus forficatus

The Cozumel Emerald is a hummingbird species unique to Cozumel Island, Mexico, notable for its vivid emerald green plumage that covers its body, including a brilliant green throat in males, distinguishing it from other hummingbirds.

This small, agile bird is adept at quick flights and hovering, feeding primarily on nectar with its precise, needle-like beak, and supplementing its diet with insects for protein. Highly territorial, the Cozumel Emerald is often observed defending its feeding areas through spirited aerial maneuvers.

9. Couch’s kingbird

Couch's kingbird
Couch’s kingbird | image by Becky Matsubara via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific Name: Tyrannus couchii

Couch’s Kingbird is a medium-sized bird found primarily in the southern United States, Mexico, and Central America. It is characterized by its bright yellow belly, olive-green back, and distinctive black tail with white edges. This bird is known for its loud, distinctive call, which is often a clear, high-pitched series of notes, distinguishing it from other kingbird species.

Couch’s Kingbird is a skilled flyer, adept at catching insects in mid-air, which constitutes the majority of its diet. It typically nests in trees and shrubs, where it aggressively defends its territory against intruders, including birds much larger than itself.

10. Denham’s bustard

Denham's bustard
Denham’s bustard | image by Bernard DUPONT via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific Name: Neotis denhami

Couch’s Kingbird is a medium-sized bird found primarily in the southern United States, Mexico, and Central America. It is characterized by its bright yellow belly, olive-green back, and distinctive black tail with white edges. This bird is known for its loud, distinctive call, which is often a clear, high-pitched series of notes, distinguishing it from other kingbird species.

Couch’s Kingbird is a skilled flyer, adept at catching insects in mid-air, which constitutes the majority of its diet. It typically nests in trees and shrubs, where it aggressively defends its territory against intruders, including birds much larger than itself.

11. Fan-tailed widowbird

Fan-tailed widowbird
Fan-tailed widowbird | image by Bernard DUPONT via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific Name: Euplectes axillaris

The Fan-tailed Widowbird is a stout and short-tailed bird, primarily found in Africa. Male Fan-tailed Widowbirds display large reddish shoulders in all plumages. During the breeding season, males exhibit predominantly black plumage, while in non-breeding seasons, their feathers become streaky brown.

These birds are often observed in open grasslands and savannas, where they forage for seeds and insects. Fan-tailed Widowbirds are known for their distinctive courtship displays, where males perform elaborate aerial flights to attract females.

12. Giant kingbird

Giant kingbird
Giant kingbird | image by Len Worthington via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific Name: Tyrannus cubensis

The Giant Kingbird is a large flycatcher native to Cuba and some nearby islands, distinguished by its size, and being one of the largest in its genus. It has a striking appearance with a dark gray head, olive back, and a pale grayish underpart, alongside a heavy bill that it uses adeptly to catch insects.

This bird is known for its aggressive behavior, especially in defending its territory against predators or intruders, showcasing its dominance over its environment. The Giant Kingbird’s calls are loud and varied, including sharp, piercing notes that are characteristic of its communication.

13. Gray-headed lovebird

Gray-headed lovebird
Gray-headed lovebird | image by Frank Vassen via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY 2.0

Scientific Name: Agapornis canus

The Grey-headed Lovebird, also known as the Madagascar Lovebird, is a small parrot native to Madagascar. This species is notable for its distinct coloration: males have a bright gray head and neck with a green body, while females are mostly green all over, allowing for easy sex identification. These lovebirds are about 13 cm in length, making them one of the smaller members of the lovebird genus.

Gray-headed Lovebirds are monogamous, often forming strong pair bonds with their mates, characterized by mutual preening and feeding. They primarily feed on seeds, fruits, and vegetables. In the wild, they exhibit a strong preference for living in small flocks and are known for their playful and social nature.

14. Guianan puffbird

Guianan puffbird
Guianan puffbird | image by Hector Bottai via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 4.0

Scientific Name: Notharchus macrorhyncho

The Guianan Puffbird is a distinctive bird species found in the forests of northern South America, particularly within the Guiana Shield. It is characterized by its large head, stout body, and short tail, with a unique, predominantly brown plumage interspersed with white and black markings. The bird’s most striking feature is its large, broad bill, which it uses to snatch insects and small vertebrates from the forest understory.

This Guianan Puffbird is known for its sit-and-wait hunting strategy, remaining motionless for long periods before attacking prey. It is a solitary or sometimes pair-living bird, rarely seen in groups, and is often found perched quietly in the forest, making it a challenge to spot.

15. Jamaican blackbird

Jamaican blackbird
Jamaican blackbird | image by dominic sheron via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific Name: Nesopsar nigerrimus

The Jamaican Blackbird, also known as the ‘wild pine sergeant’, is a unique bird species endemic to Jamaica. It exhibits a striking all-black plumage, with both males and females appearing similar, making sex differentiation challenging based solely on color.

This bird is distinctive for its specialized feeding behavior; it forages for insects and spiders within bromeliads and on tree bark in montane forests. Unlike many other blackbirds, it has a highly specialized habitat preference, thriving in areas with dense wet forests, particularly those with a high abundance of epiphytes.

16. Lesser frigatebird

Lesser frigatebird
Lesser frigatebird | image by Shah Jahan via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 4.0

Scientific Name: Fregata ariel

The Lesser Frigatebird is a seabird known for its large wingspan, forked tail, and the ability to soar for weeks over open ocean. Adult males display an almost entirely black plumage, distinguished by a red throat and white spurs extending from the body onto the wing, while adult females feature a black belly and throat, contrasted with a white breast and hind collar, and have similar white spurs on their sides. This species exhibits kleptoparasitism, meaning it often steals food from other birds mid-flight, showcasing their agility and opportunistic feeding habits.

Lesser Frigatebirds rarely land on water due to their small, weak feet, and instead, catch their prey from the ocean’s surface. An interesting fact is that they spend most of their life airborne, landing only to breed on remote islands. Their nesting sites are usually free of ground predators, which is crucial for their ground-nesting breeding habits.

17. Little wattlebird

Little wattlebird
Little wattlebird | image by JJ Harrison via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific Name: Anthochaera chrysoptera

The Little Wattlebird is a medium-sized Australian bird that sports a dark brown plumage accented by fine white streaks. Easily distinguished from Red Wattlebird by its absence of pink wattles beneath the eye and the lack of a yellow lower belly. This species is recognized for its loud and harsh calls, contributing to its alternative name, the “brush wattlebird.”

Little Wattlebirds are primarily nectar feeders, thriving in gardens, woodlands, and coastal bushlands where they exhibit aggressive behavior towards other birds to defend their feeding territories. An interesting behavior is their ability to hover like hummingbirds while feeding from flowers, showcasing their adaptability and resourcefulness in foraging.

18. Magnificent riflebird

Magnificent riflebird
Magnificent riflebird | image by Eric Gropp via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY 2.0

Scientific Name: Ptiloris magnificus

The Magnificent Riflebird, found in New Guinea and northeastern Australia, is a captivating bird known for its glossy black and iridescent blue-green plumage. Males are famous for their dramatic courtship dances, where they display their vibrant feathers to attract females. While males are brightly colored, females and young birds are mostly brown.

This bird feeds on fruits, insects, and small animals, usually in the rainforest canopy. One of its unique features is its ability to mimic various sounds.

19. Millerbird

Millerbird | image by R Kohley via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY 2.0

Scientific Name: Acrocephalus familiaris

The Millerbird is a small, inconspicuous songbird, that occurs only on Nihoa and Laysan in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Characterized by its olive-brown upperparts and whitish underparts with faint streaking, males and females appear similar, showing little to no sexual dimorphism. This bird distinguishes itself through its vibrant, complex song, a key trait for territory defense and attracting a mate.

Millerbirds are insectivorous, adept at gleaning small insects and spiders from foliage, demonstrating remarkable agility. They are known for their resilience and adaptability, particularly highlighted by successful conservation efforts to reintroduce them to habitats from which they had disappeared. A unique feature of the Millerbird is its intense territorial behavior, often engaging in vocal duels with rivals.

20. Northern mockingbird

Northern mockingbird
Northern mockingbird | image by Rhododendrites via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 4.0

Scientific Name: Mimus polyglottos

The Northern Mockingbird is a medium-sized bird known for its remarkable ability to mimic the songs of other birds and sounds from its environment, including mechanical noises. This bird is primarily gray with a lighter belly and distinctive white patches on its wings and tail, visible in flight. Found across the United States, southern Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean, it adapts well to both wild and urban areas.

The Northern Mockingbird is territorial and can be seen vigorously defending its nesting area, especially during breeding season. It feeds on insects, berries, and fruits. An interesting fact about this bird is that it can sing over 200 different songs, including the calls of other bird species, frogs, and even electronic devices, showcasing its vocal versatility and memory.

21. Ovenbird

Ovenbird | image by Rhododendrites via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 4.0

Scientific Name: Seiurus aurocapilla

The Ovenbird is a small songbird found in North America, characterized by its olive-brown upperparts and streaked underparts. Both males and females share similar appearances, distinguished by bold black streaks on their sides and a distinct orange crown. These birds derive their name from the oven-like shape of their nests, which are built on the ground and covered with a domed roof.

They inhabit dense forests and thickets, foraging for insects and spiders on the forest floor while employing a distinctive “teacher, teacher, teacher” song. Ovenbirds are known for their ground-nesting behavior, where they carefully conceal their nests among fallen leaves and twigs.

22. Pied butcherbird

Pied butcherbird
Pied butcherbird | image by Graham Winterflood via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific Name: Cracticus nigrogularis

The Pied Butcherbird is a medium-sized bird native to Australia, known for its striking black and white plumage. This bird possesses a robust build, a hooked beak designed for its carnivorous diet, and a long, melodious call considered one of the most sophisticated Australian birds. Pied Butcherbirds are adept hunters, often seen perched silently before swooping down on their prey, which includes insects, small vertebrates, and occasionally, other birds.

They exhibit interesting behaviors such as impaling their catch on branches or barbed wire as a food storage method. These birds are also known for their complex social structures, engaging in cooperative breeding where offspring from previous broods assist in raising the young.

23. Philippine leafbird

Philippine leafbird
Philippine leafbird | image by Kirkamon Guapo Cabello via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 4.0

Scientific Name: Chloropsis flavipennis

The Philippine Leafbird is a small, vibrant bird endemic to the Philippines, characterized by its predominantly green plumage that camouflages well with the foliage. This species is known for its remarkable ability to blend into its leafy environment, making it challenging to spot in its natural habitat.

Philippine Leafbirds feed primarily on nectar, fruits, and insects, showcasing a versatile diet. An interesting aspect of their behavior is their vocal mimicry; they can imitate the calls of other bird species. These birds are often found in forests and woodlands, highlighting the importance of preserving their natural habitats for their survival.

24. Red-tailed tropicbird

Red-tailed tropicbird
Red-tailed tropicbird | image by USFWS – Pacific Region via Flickr

Scientific Name: Phaethon rubricauda

The Red-tailed Tropicbird is a striking seabird known for its slender white body with a red beak. Both males and females exhibit similar physical characteristics, making sex differentiation challenging without close observation. These birds have a wingspan that can reach up to one meter, aiding their adeptness at gliding over the ocean surface.

Unique among seabirds, their flight involves a graceful combination of soaring and fluttering, a technique that allows them to remain airborne for extended periods while hunting for fish and squid. Red-tailed Tropicbirds are solitary or found in pairs rather than large flocks, often nesting on isolated, predator-free islands where they lay a single egg directly on the ground or in cliff crevices. An interesting fact about these birds is their mating ritual, which includes aerial displays and mutual preening between partners.

25. Stitchbird

Stitchbird | image by vil.sandi via Flickr | CC BY-ND 2.0

Scientific Name: Notiomystis cincta

The Stitchbird is a small, nectar-feeding bird endemic to New Zealand, distinguished by its unique physical and behavioral characteristics. The male features a black head adorned with prominent white ear tufts and a white wing-bar, complemented by a striking yellow band around the neck and shoulders. In contrast, females and juveniles display only the white wing bar.

The Stitchbird’s distinctive feeding habit comes from its brush-tipped tongue, used for nectar collection, linking it to honeyeaters more than to other New Zealand birds. Despite their size, they are territorial and vocal, with males producing stitch-like high-pitched sounds, giving the bird its name. Their breeding involves communal care, where non-breeding members help in rearing the young.

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