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Birds with 9 Letters (Pics & Facts)

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

Whether you are working on a cross-word puzzle, trivia game or just curious, we’ve compiled a list of 17 birds with 9 letter names. From mighty eagles, to tiny pipits, we’ve included a wide variety from all over the world.  

17 Birds with 9 Letters

1. Bald Eagle

bald eagle
Bald Eagle

Scientific Name: Haliaeetus leucocephalus

This majestic symbol of the United States is an opportunistic feeder. This means that it will take food however it can get it. Sometimes, it hunts. Other times, it scavenges or steals food from other animals like ospreys. They have dark brown feathers on their bodies that contrast with the white feathers on their heads and tails. However, they spend the first few years of life completely brown.  

2. Blue Crane

blue crane
Blue Crane image by Bernard Dupont via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific Name: Grus paradisea

The beautiful blue crane is the national bird of South Africa, the only region where it is found. They had a proportionally large head atop a skinny neck, and a bluish-gray coloring that gives way to frilly black feathers that trail behind them. These ground birds feed mainly on grasses, sedges and insects. They are known to be protective of their nesting sites and will attack any animal or person that gets too close.

3. Kittiwake

Black-legged Kittiwakes | image by ethan.gosnell2 via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific genus: Rissa

There are only two kittiwake species, the black-legged and red-legged. They are members of the gull family, and look very similar to other gulls with a white body and grey wings. However the wings of the kittiwake are completely black at the tip. They breed along the coast in the North Pacific, Arctic and North Atlantic oceans. Kittiwakes are the only species of gull that exclusively nests on cliffs. 

4. Barred Owl

barred owl perched on branch
Barred Owl | image by Everglades National Park via Flickr

Scientific name: Strix varia

The brown and white striped barred owl is found mainly in the eastern United States and Canada, with some in the Pacific northwest. Barred owls have a brown back mottled with white, and a white belly with long vertical brown bars. They have a rounded head without ear tufts, a gray face with large black eyes and a small yellow beak.

Barred owls prefer mixed and mature trees near water, especially if there are large tracks of unbroken forest. Their loud and unique hooting call is described as 8-9 notes with a cadence of “who cooks for you? Who cooks for you-allllll?”. 

5. Chaffinch 

Common Chaffinch | image by hedera.baltica via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific Name: Fringilla coelebs

Chaffinches are small, colorful birds found all across Europe into Siberia. While there are a few other species and subspecies, The Eurasian chaffinch, or common chaffinch, is by far the most populous and is often just referred to as “chaffinch.” Like many finches, males are more colored than females. Males have a pinkish-red breast and face, a blue-gray crown and nape, and a white belly and wing bars. Females are dusky olive with hints of yellow with black and white wings.

Through research it was discovered that there are specific ‘regional dialects’ among males songs, and young birds must learn it from and adult male within a specific time window after hatching, or they tend to never be able learn it at all.

6. Ptarmigan

Rock Ptarmigan with transitional plumage | image by Alaska Region U.S. Fish & Wildlife via Flickr

Scientific Genus: Lagopus

Ptarmigans are a group of ground birds that belong to the grouse family. They are found in the Arctic and sub-Arctic regions of North America, Europe, and Asia. These birds are well adapted to living in cold climates and are known for their distinctive plumage that changes color with the seasons – white for winter snow and brown for non-snowy seasons.

Ptarmigans are herbivores and feed on a variety of plants, including willow buds, birch catkins, and berries. During the winter months, they will also eat twigs and bark. Their diet is high in cellulose, which requires a specialized digestive system to break down.

7. Goldcrest 

Goldcrest | image by f.c.franklin via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific Name: Regulus regulus

The goldcrest is a small kinglet and happens to be one of Europe’s smallest birds, measuring 3.3 to 3.7 inches. Their distinguishing feature is a bold, golden crown stripe on their heads, which is bordered by black stripes. On cold winter nights, two or more may roost together in dense foliage or cavities to help stay warm.

8. Royal Tern

side by side photo of royal tern to show the breeding versus nonbreeding plumage
Royal Tern | Breeding image by Judy Gallagher via Flickr | Non breeding image by Andrew Cannizzaro via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific Name: Thalasseus maximus

Royal terns are large, mostly coastal birds that are between 17.7 and 19.7 inches long. They are most common along the Gulf Coast and the southern Atlantic coast. They spend their days searching the water for crustaceans, shrimp, fish, and soft-shelled blue crabs. While breeding the top of their head is black from beak to crest, while during the non-breeding season their forehead is white.  

9. Ruddy Duck

Scientific Name: Oxyura jamaicensis

Ruddy ducks are small diving ducks native to North and South America. They prefer to live in dense vegetation in or near wetlands, which can make them hard to spot. They have a fan-shaped tail which often sticks up, and a compact “stocky” looking body.  Breeding males have deep chestnut bodies with a bright blue bill, white cheeks, and a striking white cap that extends to the nape of their neck. Non-breeding males and females have more muted brownish-gray coloring. 

10. Marsh Wren

Marsh wren
Marsh wren | image by Becky Matsubara via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific Name: Cistothorus palustris

The marsh wren is a small brown songbird with coloring that blends in well with their preferred habitat of wetlands such as marshes, which are densely forested with Cattails and bullrush. Insects and spiders make up the majority of their diet. They’re sing most at dusk and dawn, which is the easiest way to find these tiny birds that stay hidden in the reeds.

11. Silvereye

Silvereye | image by patrickkavanagh via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific Name: Zosterops lateralis

The silvereye, also known as the waxeye or white-eye, is native to Australia, New Zealand, and the southwest Pacific islands. This bird gets its name from the distinct white ring around its eye. In eastern parts of Australia, silvereyes have gray backs and olive-green heads, but in the western parts of the country, they have olive-green backs instead of gray. 

12. Snow Goose

snow goose standing in wetland
Snow Goose | image by U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Southwest Region via Flickr

Scientific name: Anser caerulescens

The Snow Goose is all white with black wingtips, pink legs and beak. However there is also a “blue morph” version who’s plumage is partly or entirely dark. Your best chance of seeing them is during the winter when they can be found around bodies of water and open fields across the U.S. During the summer, they spend their breeding season high up in the arctic. 

13. Canada Jay

Canada Jay | image by Lorie Shaull via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific name: Perisoreus canadensis

Once called the Gray Jay, the Canada Jay lives across Canada and Alaska and down the Rocky Mountain region of the US. Canada Jays are found in higher elevations where they nest and forage for food. They will store food using saliva to stick food pieces to branches for later consumption. While many jays we are familiar with are blue, these jays are gray with some white on their head and around their neck. 

14. Stock Dove

stock dove
Stock Dove | image by Frank Vassen via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific Name: Columba oenas

The stock dove is a type of pigeon that has bluish-gray feathers with a pinkish hue on their chest and neck. They look similar to wood pigeons and are often mistaken for one another, especially since they do sometimes forage for food together. However, the stock dove doesn’t have white feathers on the neck and wings like the wood pigeon.

They also have an iridescent patch on the side of their neck. Stock doves breed across the palearctic. They nest in holes found in old trees, but will also use rabbit burrows, hedges, thick growth ivy or certain nest boxes. 

15. Snail Kite

male snail kite
Snail Kite (male) with snail | image by Mike’s Birds via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific name: Rostrhamus sociabilis 

The Snail kite has black feathers, a sharp, curved bill, and piercing red eyes. Males are dark all over, while females are brown with white streaking around the face. Snail kites live in Central America, many of the Caribbean islands, and even Central and Southern Florida. 

They look for their main food source, apple snails, while perching or flying low over the water. Grabbing the snails with their feet, they carry the snail to a perch where they can use their bill to extract the snail body from the shell. 

16. Gyrfalcon

Gyrfalcon (white morph)

Scientific name: Falco rusticolus

These cold-weather falcons breed around the Arctic circle, then move further south into Canada for the winter. Typically Gyrfalcons only come south into a few of the northern U.S. states. They can come in two distinct color morphs, white and gray.

The white morph, pictured above, can look a bit like a snowy owl with white plumage flecked with black. Gray morphs have dark backs and heads, either solid or with white banding. In their breeding range they rely mainly on ptarmigan and seabirds for food. 

17. Tree Pipit

tree pipit
Tree Pipit | image by xulescu_g via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0
via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific Name: Anthus trivialis

The tree pipit is primarily found in parts of Europe and Asia during the breeding season. During winter, they migrate to sub-Saharan Africa to escape the harsh European winters. Tree pipits can be found in a variety of habitats, including open woodlands, forest edges, and clearings. They build their nests on the ground, typically concealed in grass or under low vegetation.