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Birds with 8 Letters (Photos & Facts)

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

If you enjoy birdwatching, you might know the names of many common birds in your backyard. However, have you ever stopped to think how many letters are in each name? Well, now, you don’t have to. We have compiled a list of 12 bird species with 8 letters in their names, so next time you get curious or see a crossword clue about a bird with 8 letters in its name, you can think about this article. 

12 Birds with 8 Letters

1. Bluebird


As the name suggests, bluebirds have beautiful blue feathers. The males are more vibrant, while the females have more subdued feathers. There are three species of bluebird in North America, including the Eastern bluebird, the Western bluebird, and the Mountain bluebird. Bluebirds are insect eaters. You’ll often see them perching, then flying out to grab a bug and retuning to their perch. They are also cavity nesters, and one of people’s favorite birds to try and attract with a bird house. You can’t attract bluebirds with bird seed, but offering mealworms may do the trick.

2. Cardinal

northern cardinal male
Northern Cardinal (male) | image by:

When you hear cardinal, you most likely think of the Northern Cardinal, where males have vibrant red plumage and a distinctive crest. The cardinal family contains many members, including buntings, grosbeaks and tanagers. However most of us think of cardinals as medium sized, seed eating birds with a head crest. Aside from the familiar Northern Cardinal, cardinals with similar silhouettes include the Vermillion Cardinal, Pyrrhuloxia and Red-crested Cardinal. 

3. Cockatoo

Moluccan cockatoo
Moluccan Cockatoo | image by cuatrok77 via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Cockatoos are highly intelligent parrots native to Australia, Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, and the Philippines. There are 21 different cockatoo species, which range in color from white to black and everywhere in between. Cockatoos are also known for their impressive vocalizations, which can range from soft coos to loud screeches. Some species of cockatoo, such as the sulfur-crested cockatoo, are popular pets due to their social nature and ability to mimic human speech.

4. Flamingo

American flamingo foraging
American flamingo foraging

Flamingos are easily recognized by their unique shape. Their round body is balanced between an extra long neck and extra long legs. They also have a small head with a large, thick, down curved beak made specially to filter small shrimp, algae and other aquatic organisms out of the water. Did you know that they aren’t born pink? The pink hue actually comes from their diet, which is rich in beta-carotene pigments. There are six different kinds of flamingos that can be found in South America, Africa, the Middle East, Mexico, and the Caribbean. 

5. Hornbill

image: Thomas Quine | Flickr | CC 2.0

Hornbills can be easily identified by the hollow, spongy body part on top of their bills, which is called a casque. The casque is made of keratin, just like our hair and nails. Casque can vary in size and usage from species to species. Some use them to communicate, carrying sound over longer distances, while others use it to regulate body heat. There are 59 species of hornbill found in Africa and Southeast Asia. These species range in size from as small as 12 inches to up to 39 inches, with a six-foot wingspan. 

6. Lovebird

lovebirds perched
Lovebirds | image by Peter Békési via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Lovebirds are small parrots known for their affectionate behavior and vibrant plumage. There are nine lovebird species, all of which mate for life. Most lovebird species are green with various colorations on their heads. Native to Africa and Madagascar, they are popular pets that enjoy mental stimulation. Their name comes in part from their social behavior with each other, preening each others feathers, cuddling and feeding each other.  

7. Nuthatch

White-breasted Nuthatch / Image:

Nuthatches are small birds known for their habit of creeping down tree trunks headfirst. They have strong bills and are adept at foraging for insects and seeds. In North America, you can find four nuthatch species, including the white-breasted nuthatch, the red-breasted nuthatch, the brown-headed nuthatch, and the pygmy nuthatch. Worldwide, there are at least 30 nuthatch species. Many species readily visit bird feeders, grabbing a seed and flying away to a nearby tree to stash or crack the seed behind the furrows of the bark.

8. Oxpecker

kudu oxpeckers
Oxpeckers on top of Kudu | image by David Minty via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Oxpeckers are known for their mutualistic relationship with large mammals. They feed on ticks and parasites found on the skin of these animals, providing a valuable cleaning service. There are two species of oxpecker, both of which are found in Africa. You’ll find them riding around on the heads and backs of animals like the kudu, water buffalo and giraffe, hunting around their hair for tasty bugs.

9. Parakeet

Two budgies perching
Two budgies perching

Parakeets are small parrots with vibrant plumage and playful personalities. There are around 115 different parakeet species worldwide. The most well-known species is probably the shell parakeet, also known as a budgerigar or budgie, which makes a popular pet because of its playful personality and ability to mimic sounds. Budgies comes in shades of green, blue, yellow and white, and are often bred for specific color combos and feather patterns. 

10. Pheasant

Common pheasant on grass
Common pheasant on grass

Pheasants are ground birds with long tails that can be found in open woodlands. The males have striking feathers, while the females are more subdued. They have strong legs for running, and while they can fly they typically prefer the ground and don’t fly for long distances. As part of courtship, males flash their feathers and make loud calls to impress females. There are at least 50 known species of pheasant found around the world, including Asia, Europe, North America, and Africa.

11. Starling

Lined starlings on a wire
Lined starlings on a wire | Image by Rebecca Matthews from Pixabay

There are many starling species found throughout Europe, North America, Asia, and Africa. Like most birds on this list, starlings are sexually dimorphic, which means the males look different than the females. Most starlings have iridescent glossy plumage on their neck, breast, and back, with black wings and hints of purple and green. Starlings are known for flocking together, especially in the non-breeding season when they can gather together is huge groups, flying in unison and creating impressive patterns in the sky.

12. Titmouse

Juniper Titmouse | image by Alan Schmierer via Flickr

Titmice are small, agile birds with cheerful and curious personalities. There are five different species of titmouse in North America, with the most common being the tufted titmouse. Titmice can be found in woodlands, groves, forests, and even more urban areas. Most are various shades of gray or blue-gray, with a small head crest. They are easily attracted to bird feeders and are a common bird in many backyards.