Beautiful backyard birds Kentucky? There is no doubt that the Bluegrass State of Kentucky is one of the best states in the entire country for bird watching. The variety of backyard birds of Kentucky that can be found here is astonishing, but what would you expect from one of the country’s most diverse regions?
And, if you are looking for some area-focused hotspots to check out then we have that covered as well!
Kentucky is a bird watcher’s paradise. Birdlife abounds in the Bluegrass region, on the Cumberland Plateau and in those lush hills surrounded by meandering rivers and landscaped with ponds just made for feeding birds.
From crows to quail, Kentucky has a variety of birds that like to make their home, nest, eat and raise their young here. Some migrate during winter, but others happily stay all year round and call Kentucky home.
So, let us visit some of the birds you might see on your next trip to Kentucky and find out what birds are common to the area.
Backyard Birds Of Kentucky
What are you waiting for? Scroll down and take a look at the list of the most beautiful backyard birds of Kentucky. All these little love birds, listed below are some all-time favorites that I know you will enjoy.
- Mourning Dove
- Northern Cardinal
- Blue Jay
- American Robin
- Indigo Bunting
- Yellow-rumped Warbler
- Song Sparrow
- American Goldfinch
- Downy Woodpecker
- Tufted Titmouse
- Carolina Chickadee
- Carolina Wren
- Common Grackle
- Red-bellied Woodpecker
- European starling
- White-throated Sparrow
- House sparrow
- Eastern Bluebird
- Eastern Towhee
- House Finch
1. Mourning Dove
The Mourning Dove is a frequent visitor to the bird feeders that are set up in some parts of the United States. There are various places where they can be seen snacking on seeds, fruits and grains.
Their diet is varied and they will feed on wildflowers and plants which they find in the fields. Mourning Doves are fearless birds which often come remarkably close to human beings to be fed.
- Length:12 inches
- Weight: 120g
- Wingspan: 18 inches
These birds have a preference for sunflower seed-based bird feeders, making the perfect bird to fill that birdfeeder by your window.
They are nature’s favorite as they are seen all over the United States from eastern Washington to North Dakota and in the eastern half of Montana all the way through to Florida. They prefer to nest in open fields and shrubs such as riverbanks or dry trees.
2. Northern Cardinal
Growing to be about the size of a Robin, the Northern Cardinal is known for its beautiful song and bright red color. Cardinals are highly territorial and will chase other birds out of their space, even during the breeding season, when their aggression is at its peak.
They love sunflower seeds, milo, peanut hearts and millet and will feed on platform feeders, tube feeders or hoppers at bird feeders. During the winter, you will see the Cardinals in flocks.
- Length: 8.3–9.3 in (21–23.5 cm)
- Wingspan: 9.8–12.2 in (25–31 cm)
- Weighs: 1.19–2.29 oz (33.6–65 g)
Beautiful Northern Cardinal birds make a fantastic addition to any backyard. These friendly, active birds will brighten your day with their distinctive appearance, and lively songs.
With a little bit of birdseed, sunflower seeds, milo, millet or peanut hearts, you can attract these gorgeous creatures to your feeders.
3. Blue Jay
Blue Jays are members of the Corvid family and make an excellent addition to your backyard. Blue Jays are common songbirds with blue and black backs, a blue upright crest and white undersides. It is also one of the common birds in Ontario.
They enjoy acorns, nuts and seeds so for best viewing offer them a tray or hopper feeder with a platform on a post, as well as a birdbath. Blue Jays prefer bright areas so position these sites in an area of your backyard that receives lots of sun.
- Length: 10-12 inches (25-30 cm)
- Wingspan 13-17 inches (34-43 cm)
- Weighs: 2.5-3.5 oz (70-100 g)
It is best to plant some oak trees near these pieces of equipment. Also, consider a birdhouse constructed from logs. For the best view choose an open tree across from your feeders in an area where the birds’ natural food source is present.
4. American Robin
American Robins are common and mostly seen on lawns picking up earthworms. With their back red-colored back, blackheads and orange breasts, they are one of the most beautiful backyard birds of Kentucky you can have in your backyard.
- Length: 9 – 11 inches
- Wingspan: 14.75 – 16.5 inches
In their winter habitat, you are most likely to see them in your backyard from spring. American Robins are easy to attract to your yard with proper nutrition. They eat sunflower seeds, peanut hearts and suet, fruit, and mealworms.
They may even eat mealworms out of your hand. Putting the food on platform feeders is the best or just scatter the food on the ground.
5. Indigo Bunting
The Indigo Bunting bird has a distinct blue and black plumage. The males are bright blue with streaks of black in their tails and wings. Females are brown with a touch of blue on the head and on the wing feathers.
- Length: 4.7-5.1 in (12-13 cm)
- Weight: 0.4-0.6 oz (12-18 g)
- Wingspan: 7.5-8.7 in (19-22 cm)
This beautiful bird can be found far north of its breeding grounds staying close to the water in weedy fields and shrubby areas foraging for seeds and insects.
Attract Indigo Buntings to your backyard with small seeds such as Nyjer and thistle, Habitat modification by removing weeds, long grass, and clearing understory of brush may help. Provide some water in a shallow dish.
6. Yellow-rumped Warbler
Also known as Setophaga coronata, The Yellow-rumped Warbler is a very energetic small bird with unique yellow-rumped coloration that can easily be differentiated.
They have white, brown, black and yellow colors on their back and neck and wings, while they have a white belly with some black stripes covering the neck part.
- Length: 5.9 inches
- Wingspan: 10 inches
- Weight: 14 grams
The Yellow-rumped Warbler is a very social bird. It can often be found flocking together in large numbers. Their diet consists of mostly insects and larva, but they have been known to eat small berries and seeds as well.
The Yellow-rumped warbler produces a melodious tune that is used to attract the female to their territory or to scare away other birds who are near their nest.
7. Song Sparrow
Listen for the sweet song of Song Sparrows on your next walk in the park. The Song Sparrow is an interesting and small-sized bird. This lovely bird has a brown plumage color. Their whole body is covered with brown feathers. They have a brownish belly and underparts with black markings.
- 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)
The Song Sparrow likes mostly living in the different wetlands and woodlands, including mixed forests and gardens. The Song Sparrow can live in different types of environments since they can adapt to the different foods.
To draw them to your backyard, use berries.
8. American Goldfinch
American Goldfinches are common in North America, with the males dressed in their signature yellow and black breeding plumage. The females, conversely, are more nondescript brown in winter.
- Length: 4.3-5.1 in (11-13 cm)
- Weight: 0.4-0.7 oz (11-20 g)
- Wingspan: 7.5-8.7 in (19-22 cm)
They breed from Canada into the northern two-thirds of the United States and spend their winters in the southern part of their range.
To attract American Goldfinch to your backyard, these birds prefer sunflower seed at feeders and Nyjer seed during migration; they will visit most other bird foods. You can also try planting milkweed and thistles.
9. Downy Woodpecker
Downy Woodpeckers are beautiful birds with black and white coloring alongside a red patch at the back of their heads. They look like the Hairy Woodpecker with their long, down-curved bill, but have a black cap and back.
- Length: 5.5-6.7 in (14-17 cm)
- Weight: 0.7-1.0 oz (21-28 g)
- Wingspan: 9.8-11.8 in (25-30 cm)
Their underbellies are white. These little birds are common at backyard feeders where they will eat black oil sunflower seeds, suet, millet, and peanuts on platform feeders.
To attract Downy Woodpeckers to your backyard, try using suet feeders because they love to eat suet. But you can also try millet, black oil sunflower seeds and peanuts.
10. Tufted Titmouse
The Tufted Titmouse is a fun, beautiful bird that adds charm to any yard. It is one of the common backyard birds of Kentucky that you want to have in your backyard. The Tufted Titmouse is easy to identify by its gray crest, large eyes, and gray back.
- Length: 5.5-6.3 in (14-16 cm)
- Weight: 0.6-0.9 oz (18-26 g)
- Wingspan: 7.9-10.2 in (20-26 cm)
Tufted Titmice are fun to watch and are easy to attract to your backyard with tube feeders. They may also be attracted to sunflower seeds, peanuts or suet in mesh bags.
The Tufted Titmouse may flock with chickadees, suet, nuthatches, and woodpeckers, but will chase off smaller birds. More about Tufted Titmouse here.
11. Carolina Chickadee
The Carolina Chickadee bird is an active small-size passerine bird also known as Poecile carolinensis. The chickadee ranges from Alaska to Nicaragua and south to Southern Mexico, Uruguay and Brazil in South America.
- Length: 3.9-4.7 in (10-12 cm)
- Weight: 0.3-0.4 oz (8-12 g)
- Wingspan: 5.9-7.9 in (15-20 cm)
Chickadee birds survive in canopies and places near the water bodies. They are also found in open woodlands, clearings, farmlands, parks, gardens, etc.
Carolina Chickadee bird is a beautiful bird that feeds on small insects, including larvae and eggs of some insects as well. They also eat the small size grains, seeds of bushes and plants. They eat nuts, small berries and fruits. They can be attracted to backyards with suet.
12. Carolina Wren
The Carolina Wren is hardy, building its nest (typically hanging from the underside of a leafy branch) in the brush and thickets it favors—find it with binoculars if necessary. Learning the wren’s call can help to elicit this wild songster’s presence.
Larger thrushes like the males’ counterparts, Eastern Bluebird and American Robin, sing rather than twitter, but they are much less territorial, allowing them to breed in more open areas. Thus, they can be more visible than the territorial wren.
- Length: 4.7-5.5 in (12-14 cm)
- Weight: 0.6-0.8 oz (18-22 g)
- Wingspan: 11.4 in (29 cm)
If you love birds but do not have acres of habitat to explore, the Carolina Wren is the perfect choice for you. This hardy little bird can befuddle even veteran birders with its piercing song and erratic flight. Explore suburban habitats, city parks, and even backyard gardens and decks.
To attract Carolina Wren to your backyard, try suet-filled feeders during winter. To attract breeding pairs, try putting up a nest box
13. Common Grackle
The Common Grackle is one of the most numerous bird species in North America.
These blackbirds, who tend to gather in noisy groups and are often seen wading through shallow water or plucking insects off of plants, are omnivores and eat many different types of food; they also enjoy eating crops, especially corn, and may also scavenge garbage.
- Length: 11.0-13.4 in (28-34 cm)
- Weight: 2.6-5.0 oz (74-142 g)
- Wingspan: 14.2-18.1 in (36-46 cm)
A slim but long-tailed bird with a short, slightly curved bill, the male has shiny black plumage; the female is duller and speckled with browns.
To attract them to your yard, suet up bird feeders with mixed seeds and grains.
14. Red-bellied Woodpecker
Red-bellied Woodpeckers are a favorite winter sight in forests from the Appalachians to Maryland. Their bold red caps are hard to miss against their bright white shoulder bars and bold black wing markings.
Red-bellied woodpeckers are woodpeckers, and like most woodpeckers, they leave their mark, often on trees around homes, with a smattering of peculiarly shaped holes.
- Length: 9.4 in (24 cm)
- Weight: 2.0-3.2 oz (56-91 g)
- Wingspan: 13.0-16.5 in (33-42 cm)
If you love watching birds, then Red-bellied Woodpeckers will be some of your favorites -especially in winter, when they are drawn to sunflower seeds. They also enjoy suet, peanuts and sometimes even nectar.
Dead trees can encourage them to forage naturally or even nest in your yard, and they may feed on berry trees such as hawthorn or mountain-ash in fall or winter.
15. European Starling
European Starlings are perennial villains in the animal world. The feathered interlopers were introduced into North America by Shakespeare enthusiasts.
They quickly became one of America’s most successful songbird invaders, taking advantage of a continent that had never known such species before.
European Starlings are aggressive and smart birds who challenge the way we think about nature.
- Length: 7.9-9.1 in (20-23 cm)
- Weight: 2.1-3.4 oz (60-96 g)
- Wingspan: 12.2-15.8 in (31-40 cm)
Once considered a threat to native species, today they are in charge of many ecosystems, building nests throughout cities and forests alike.
16. White-throated Sparrow
The White-throated Sparrow is a bird you are likely to see across most of eastern North America in summer and winter. Its crisp facial markings make it an attractive bird. These birds have black eye stripe, white crown and supercilium, yellow lore and are bordered by a black whisker or malar stripe.
- 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)
White-throated Sparrows are small sparrows that love to eat millet but have also been found to visit sunflower seeds at feeders. They often feed on the ground between visits to the feeder. So, if you can provide them with some softcover from leaf litter or brush piles they may stop by more often.
17. House Sparrow
The birds that live closest to us are those we notice least. House Sparrows can be seen in towns and cities all over the US, Ireland and most of northern Europe.
- 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)
There are two main reasons for their successful colonization: they are versatile in their choice of habitats and they are generalist feeders. When House Sparrows were not living with humans, they were living close beside them, so the large flocks present today are not entirely a new phenomenon.
If you have House Sparrows in your yard, encourage them to visit a backyard feeder by offering millet, corn, or sunflower seed. You will also want a feeder for thistle seed during the fall since that is a favorite food of House Sparrows year-round.
18. Eastern Bluebird
You will find the Eastern Bluebird in eastern North America, where it frequents woodland edges, suburban lawns, and farms. This is a small songbird with a long tail, prominent white eye rings and a short bill.
Males are electric blue above, with black wings, a pale orange-red throat, a white belly and rust-red undertail coverts. Females have warm brown shades below and paler feathers on the head. Juvenile birds are duller than adults.
- Length: 6.3-8.3 in (16-21 cm)
- Weight: 1.0-1.1 oz (28-32 g)
- Wingspan: 9.8-12.6 in (25-32 cm)
Eastern Bluebirds are striking, elegant birds that many people enjoy watching. This species may visit backyards if food is offered. It does not often come to feeders as its diet consists of small insects and fruits and it is not a strong flyer.
19. Eastern Towhee
The Eastern Towhee is a strikingly marked, oversized sparrow and one of the backyard birds of Kentucky. The bold black and reddish-brown feathers are highlighted with white streaks on the breast and flanks.
Their chewink calls let you know how common they are, but many of your sightings end up mere glimpses through tangles of little stems.
- Length: 6.8-8.2 in (17.3-20.8 cm)
- Weight: 1.1-1.8 oz (32-52 g)
- Wingspan: 7.9-11.0 in (20-28 cm)
Eastern Towhees are likely to visit – or perhaps live in – your yard if you have got brushy, shrubby, or overgrown borders. They prefer brushy edges of woods and thickets as well as brush edges sometimes present in agricultural areas and suburban yards.
They especially like sunflowers, thistle, and a variety of seeds or suet at feeders.
20. House Finch
You have probably seen the bright red breast and head of a House Finch – but did you know that this is a recent introduction from western North America? Or that they have a long, twittering song that can be heard in most neighborhoods on the continent?
We hope you did not miss the opportunity to discover what else makes these birds such a terrific addition to the backyards birds of Kentucky.
- 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)
House Finches will eat a variety of seeds, along with grains and fruits. They feed mostly on the ground or in low shrubs. They can flock to your backyard if you place black oil sunflower seed for them in your feeder.
Backyard Birds Kentucky FAQs
What Is KY State Bird?
The KY state bird is Northern Cardinal
How Do You Attract Birds In Kentucky?
Backyard birds Kentucky can be attracted using black oil sunflower seeds, corns and grain fillers.
What Is The Rarest Bird In Kentucky?
The common raven is rare in Kentucky
The great state of Kentucky, in addition to its mountainous terrain and rolling plains, is also home to a variety of wildlife including backyard birds of Kentucky that are native to the area.
The Blue Jay, Cardinal and Wood Thrush are among the more popular Kentucky birds. Virtually every species of bird living in Kentucky can be found throughout the country.
From beautiful forests where you can enjoy a camping experience or fish at a nearby lake, Kentucky is an outdoor lover’s dream destination.