12 Most Beautiful Small Brown Birds In Your Backyard (Free HD Pics)

Small brown birds are mostly small, drab brown birds that are known as LBJs or “Little Brown Jobs.”

They are numerous small brown birds in the US, and amongst them, I have carefully outlined the ten most famous small brown birds.

1. Common Yellowthroat

Common Yellowthroat birdsflock.com yellow birds in colorado small brown birds
Common Yellowthroat birdsflock.com yellow birds in colorado small brown birds

Botanical Name: Geothlypis trichas

Common Yellowthroats are small brown songbirds that are bright yellow with long tails that live mostly in North America, except Northern Canada and Alaska.


  • Length: 4.3-5.1 in (11-13 cm)
  • Weight: 0.3-0.3 oz (9-10 g)
  • Wingspan: 5.9-7.5 in (15-19 cm)

You can then in multitude in marshy, brushy, or wetland areas that lives in thick, tangled vegetation.

Common Yellow throat feeds majorly on insects found in large backyards that have dense vegetation.

2. Great Crested Flycatcher

Great Crested Flycatcher
Great Crested Flycatcher

Botanical Name: Myiarchus crinitus

Great Crested Flycatchers are small brown birds with yellow bellies. gray throat, reddish flashes on their wing and tail feathers. The crest is not projected a sit can’t be easily seen.

Great Crested Flycatchers do their breed in most parts of Eastern North America before migrating south during the winter to southern Florida, southern Mexico, and Central America

  • Length: 6.7-8.3 in (17-21 cm)
  • Weight: 0.9-1.4 oz (27-40 g)
  • Wingspan: 13.4 in (34 cm)

You can find Great Crested Flycatcher perched up high in woodland waiting to feed on large insects flying such as grasshoppers, butterflies, moths, wasps, and spiders.

You can also find them in parks, mixed woodlands, and at the edges of clearings, and tree-lined neighborhoods.

Additionally, they are seen perching on fence posts or any other human structures.  They mainly feed on small fruits and berries.

You can attract more Great Crested Flycatchers to your backyard by planting native species of plants and leaving brush piles that attract insects.

3. Song Sparrow


Botanical Name: Melospiza melodia

Song sparrows are small brown-streaked songbirds that live all year round in the northern US.


  • Length: 4.7-6.7 in (12-17 cm)
  • Weight: 0.4-1.9 oz (12-53 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.1-9.4 in (18-24 cm)

You can find them in open, shrubby, and wet areas often singing.

They feed on a wide variety of insects including beetles, caterpillars, midges, spiders, and earthworms. They are found also in buckwheat, sunflower, raspberries, wild cherries, blackberries, wheat, and rice.

Song Sparrows are attracted to backyard feeders in your backyards.

4. House Sparrow


Botanical Name: Passer domesticus

The House Sparrow is a small brown-backed bird that lives in all the states in the US, and also in Central America.


  • Length: 5.9-6.7 in (15-17 cm)
  • Weight: 0.9-1.1 oz (27-30 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.5-9.8 in (19-25 cm)

You can find them near houses and buildings and they eat mostly seed, grains, and discarded food.

The house sparrows are non-native birds that are found in the backyards. They are mostly attracted to birdseed, including corn, millet, and sunflower seeds.

5. Chipping Sparrow

Chipping Sparrow

Botanical Name: Spizella passerina

Chipping Sparrows are thin, long-tailed birds that do their breeding in North America, Canada, before migrating to Mexico and Florida for winter.

  • Length: 4.7-5.9 in (12-15 cm)
  • Weight: 0.4-0.6 oz (11-16 g)
  • Wingspan: 8.3 in (21 cm).

You can find them in small flocks on open ground.  Birdseed is one thing that attracts them to your backyards.

6. Golden-crowned Sparrow

Golden-crowned Sparrow
Golden-crowned Sparrow

Botanical Name: Zonotrichia atricapilla

Golden-crowned Sparrows are common small brown birds that are migratory in nature. They breed in Western Canada and Alaska before migrating to West Coast for winter.

  • Length: 5.9-7.1 in (15-18 cm)
  • Weight: 1.1-1.2 oz (30-33 g)

You can find them in weedy fields flocking seeds such as sumac, dock, and geranium.

Also, they eat insects like ants, butterflies, beetles, termites, and fruits such as apples, grapes, elderberry, and olives.

7. White-throated Sparrow


Botanical Name: Zonotrichia albicollis

White-throated Sparrows are migratory small brown birds, that breed mainly in Canada before migrating south in winter to Eastern and Southern states and the Pacific Coast.

  • Length: 6.3-7.1 in (16-18 cm)
  • Weight: 0.8-1.1 oz (22-32 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.9-9.1 in (20-23 cm)

You can find White-throated Sparrows in large flocks on the ground in woods, forests, and along the edges of wooded areas

White-throated Sparrows feed mainly on seeds of grasses, weeds, and fruits such as sumac, blueberry, blackberry, grape, mountain ash, and dogwood. Also, during summer, they feed on a large number of insects from the forest floor.

You can use millet and black oil sunflower seeds on platform feeders to attract White-throated Sparrows to your backyard feeders.

8. House Wren

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House Wren

Botanical Name: Troglodytes aedon

House Wrens are small nondescript brown birds that have a paler throat with darker barred tails and wings and tails. They are known as large songbirds that energetically hop through low branches with their tails up.

  • Length: 4.3-5.1 in (11-13 cm)
  • Weight: 0.3-0.4 oz (10-12 g)
  • Wingspan: 5.9 in (15 cm)

House Wrens spend are migratory birds that spend their summer breeding in most states before moving towards the far south and Mexico for winter.

You can find House Wrens in backyards, parks and open woods searching for insects and spiders.

House Wrens can be attracted to your backyard by leaving piles of brush or putting up a nest box.

9. Carolina Wren


Botanical Name: Thryothorus ludovicianus

Carolina Wrens are shy birds that are dark brown on top and light brown underneath.  They have a white eyebrow stripe and upright tail and loud teakettle song.

  • Length: 4.7-5.5 in (12-14 cm)
  • Weight: 0.6-0.8 oz (18-22 g)
  • Wingspan: 11.4 in (29 cm)

They can be found in woods or thickly vegetated areas.  

You can attract Carolina Wrens to your backyard with backyard feeders such as suet feeders, hulled sunflower seeds, or peanut hearts in large tube feeders.

10. Female Purple Finch

Female Purple Finch
Female Purple Finch

Botanical Name: Haemorhous purpureus

Female Purple Finches are common brown-streaked birds that are found all year in the northeast of the pacific coat. They spent their summer breeding in Canada and migrate to the eastern states to spend their winter.

They look similar to the House Finch, but their males have reddish-purple heads and breasts


  • Length: 4.7-6.3 in (12-16 cm)
  • Weight: 0.6-1.1 oz (18-32 g)
  • Wingspan: 8.7-10.2 in (22-26 cm)

They are attracted to your backyards by feeders for black oil sunflower seeds.

11. Female House Finch

female house finch
female house finch

Botanical Name: Haemorhous mexicanus

House Finches are small brown birds that originate from the western states that later got introduced into the eastern states, overtaking the dominant eastern bird, “purple finch”.

The males have a bright red head and breast but the females are brown-flecked small birds.

  • Length: 5.1-5.5 in (13-14 cm)
  • Weight: 0.6-0.9 oz (16-27 g)
  • Wingspan: 7.9-9.8 in (20-25 cm)

You can find them in farms, parks, forest edges, and backyard feeders, especially when they are noisy.  They love the noisy company; this is why they are difficult to notice.

You can attract more House Finches to backyard feeders with nyjer seeds in tube feeders or platform feeders and black oil sunflower seeds or.

12. Eastern Phoebe

Eastern Phoebe
Eastern Phoebe

Botanical Name: Sayornis phoebe

Eastern Phoebes are large migratory songbirds that breed across the northeastern states, central states, and Canada before migrating down south to the southeast and Mexico for winter.

  • Length: 5.5-6.7 in (14-17 cm)
  • Weight: 0.6-0.7 oz (16-21 g)
  • Wingspan: 10.2-11.0 in (26-28 cm)

Some species of the birds do remain all year in the south.

Unlike other species of birds, Eastern Phoebes are usually found alone, rather than in pairs or flocks, often in quiet woodland where they lie wagging their tails.

In terms of feeding, Eastern Phoebes mainly feed on flying insects which includes spiders and other crawling small insects. They also feed on small fruit and seeds. They often do their nesting on bridges barns and houses. Typically, their nest is made of grass or mud.

You can attract more Eastern Phoebes to your backyard by putting up native plants or nest boxes that produce berries.

FAQs on Small Brown Birds

What are those small brown birds called?

The majority of the small brown birds in Calgary are formerly called House Sparrows, but now known as the House Finches.

House Sparrows have two unique colors – the brown/grey /white/chestnut for the male, and the dull brown/grey for the female and juvenile.

What kind of bird is tiny and brown?

The top five tiny brown birds at your feeder is probably the House Sparrows, female House Finches, White-throated Sparrows, Song Sparrows, and female Red-winged Blackbirds. They mostly live in grasslands and marshes and forests

What bird looks like a sparrow but is smaller?

The bird that looks like a sparrow and is smaller is a particular species of small inch called, “the Pine Siskin, Carduelis pinus.”

They are tiny streaked sparrows that have a short forked tail, yellow patches on their wings and tails, which is most times not visible. The adults have brown upper parts and pale underparts, with heavy streaking throughout the remaining part of the body.

What is the difference between sparrows and finches?

Sparrows mainly feed on larger seeds and grains while finches feed mainly on smaller seeds. Finches are typically bright with bold splashes of yellow or red on their plumage, with less refined markings.

However, the only similar thing about both birds is that they both feed on a wide variety of seeds,

Watch More Brown Backyard Birds Here | Video


I hope you enjoyed and found the article exciting. For more educating posts on birds. Do check this out 8 Most Beautiful Woodpeckers in Virginia

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