Like HowStuffWorks on Facebook!

Perching Birds

Perching birds, or songbirds, are the most common birds on Earth. From cardinals to wrens, explore the different types of perching birds.

Featured
European Starling

Smaller than a robin, this black bird turns a striking iridescent purple and green in the spring. Read on to learn more about this bird.


These Little Sparrows Judge Potential Mates on Dance Moves, Not Song

Sure, your voice is great. But can you move? That's what female Java sparrows want to know before they get busy, a new study finds. See more »

From tail to beak the American crow appears totally black. In the right light, however, a green or bluish tinge suddenly makes a showing. See more »

The bright yellow plumage of male birds give the American goldfinch its name. A black forehead and black wings with white accents stand out against the yellow body. See more »

This small, but colorful falcon is a bird of prey or raptor. Read on to learn more about this bird. See more »

Catching sight of this gray bird with a brick-red belly usually signifies the start of spring. Read on to learn more about this bird. See more »

As its name suggests the barn swallow frequently takes up residence in barns and is, therefore, seen in the skies above farms and agricultural lands. Read on to learn more about this bird. See more »

The black-capped chickadee feeds on insect eggs and larvae by hanging upside down while clinging to the undersides of tree branches. Read on to learn more about this bird. See more »

The blue jay can be seen roaming the skies in deciduous forests, but is also a common sight in city parks and back yards. Read on to learn more about this bird. See more »

True to its name the head of the brown-headed cowbird is brown. The cow part of its name comes from the fact that this bird tends to associate with cows or horses while foraging for food. See more »

Chipping sparrows spend winters and summers in grassy woodlands, along rivers and lakes, and even in city parks. Read on to learn more about this bird. See more »