Birds are amazing creatures. Their ability to fly is unrivaled, and their colors, shapes, sizes, and sounds are astonishing.
Our feathered friends are pretty diverse, and each has its unique look and behavior. They vary in size, shape, color, habits, and habitat preferences. Thus, finding these fantastic creatures requires patience and practice.
Some birds go unnoticed, but these colorful beauties deserve a spot in your life. Check out our top 23 picks of beautiful red-breasted birds below!
22 Beautiful Birds With Red Breasts
1. House Finch
Scientific name:Haemorhous mexicanus
Size: This species measures about 14cm and weighs between 19-22g.
Appearance: A male House Finch is distinguished from a female by his pinkish-red breast and face. He has a brown back, belly, and tail. His eyes are black. When he sings, it sounds like a soft whistle. Females and juveniles have brown plumage.
Diet: House finch’s diet mainly includes fruits, seeds, buds, and berries. They also eat other smaller insects.
Habitat: The House Finch is one of those birds that are easy to find anywhere in the world. These small birds are often found around human habitats because they are attracted to food like seeds and nuts.
Breeding/nesting: They live in flocks and tend to nest in trees. Their nests are usually located near water sources.
2. Purple Finch
Scientific name: Haemorhous purpureus
Size: It measures around 15cm and weighs about 25g with a 25cm wingspan.
Appearance: The purple finch is one of several species in the East Tennessee mountains. While they are often mistaken for mockingbirds, they are members of the tanager family. This particular member of the tanager family is known as the purple finch because of the coloration of its head and neck feathers.
Males are pale pink-red on their heads and breasts, blending into brown on their backs and clouded white on their bellies. Females lack any red. They are coarse-streaked below, with strong face marks, including a whitish eye stripe and a dark streak down the sides of their throats.
Their song is similar to the Carolina chickadee, but there are subtle differences in how the notes sound.
Diet: Their diet consists mainly of seeds, berries, and insects.
Habitat: Purple finches live mainly in coniferous forests or mixed deciduous and coniferous woodlands.
Breeding/nesting: Purple finches usually nest in cavities in trees or shrubs, although they sometimes build nests on the ground.
They are generally shy and retiring, preferring to remain hidden during the day. However, they become very active at dusk and dawn.
3. Painted Bunting
Scientific name: Passerina ciris
Size: It measures about 13 cm long and weighs about 16g.
Appearance: The Painted Bunting is one of the most beautiful birds in North America. The males are brightly colored with a purplish-blue head, bright red breast, and greenish-yellow back. Females and juveniles are bright green with pale rings around their eyes.
They stand out because of their vivid coloring. Their call is very distinctive, too.
Habitat: They prefer wooded areas and wetlands. They are found throughout Canada and the United States. To attract them to your yard, try offering millet seed in a small feeder with perches for them to use.
Diet: These tiny birds love to spend their days feeding on seeds and insects. Sometimes they eat fruits and berries.
Breeding/nesting: They prefer to live near water and often nest in trees. Some people believe that their nests resemble the shape of a tree trunk.
4. Summer Tanager
Scientific name: Piranga rubra
Size: It measures about 16 – 17 cm and weighs about 29g.
Appearance: Males and females look different. Males are completely red and greyish wings, while females have bright yellow, orange, and green patches. This species is found throughout North America, including Alaska, Canada, Mexico, and the United States.
Summer tanagers look very similar to goldfinches when young, but adults are easily distinguished because they have longer tails and larger bills.
Diet: They feed mainly on insects and fruits, especially berries.
Habitat: They live in forests and woodlands. They winter in tropical regions, mainly in lowland forests and mid-elevation in the mountains, both in dense forests and open spaces with scattered trees.
Breeding/nesting: Males often sing from high perches, attracting female partners. Females lay one egg each season, usually in June or July. The eggs hatch in about 12 days.
5. Scarlet Tanager
Scientific name:Piranga olivacea
Size: This species is about 17cm and weighs about 30g.
Appearance: The Hepatic Tanager is a small passerine bird found in tropical South America. It belongs to the tanager family, Thraupidae, and the cardinal subfamily, Cardinalinae. Its closest relative is the Red-throated Tanager, which lives further north in Central America.
This bird is easily recognized by its red body plumage and distinctive black iris. Males and females differ greatly in appearance. Adult males are all red with black wings and tails. In contrast, adult females are olive-yellow with darker wings and tails.
Habitat: It prefers deciduous and mixed deciduous-evergreen forests, especially undisturbed tracts of forest.
Diet: Its diet consists primarily of insects, such as grasshoppers, flies, crickets, ants, beetles, and caterpillars. However, it will sometimes take some fruits and berries, including figs, grapes, and cherries.
Breeding/nesting: Both sexes build cup-shaped nests made of twigs, leaves, moss, and other plant material. Nests are typically placed in large trees, although they can be built in shrubs and vines. A single clutch of two to five white eggs is laid every year.
Like many tropical American songbirds, the Hepatic Tanager migrates northward each winter. During migration, it stops over along lakeshores and rivers, where it feeds on seeds and insects. When spring arrives, the Hepatic Tanagers return south again, stopping off along the way to feed. They arrive back in Florida during May or June.
6. Northern Cardinal
Scientific name: Cardinalis cardinalis
Size: They measure between 21 – 24 cm and weigh about 43g.
Appearance: The Northern cardinal is the most popular bird in Tennessee. This species is known for its beautiful plumage, especially its bright red coloration.
Males are a stunning red with a black mask and throat. Females are pale orangish-brown with red on their crest, wings, and tail. Both sexes have a crest on their head and a short, thick bill that is perfect for cracking seeds.
Habitat/diet: These birds prefer open areas such as parks and gardens, where they feed on insects, fruit, berries, seeds, nuts, and grains.
You can find Northern Cardinals in dense vegetation foraging for seeds, fruit, and insects.
Breeding/nesting: They nest in trees and shrubs, laying 2–5 eggs each season. The male and female both sing during courtship displays. Their song consists of 3–6 notes, repeated every 5 seconds.
The Northern Cardinal is active during daylight except when breeding season begins. During nesting season, they feed primarily early morning and late evening. They rest during the midday heat.
7. Pyrrhuloxia Bird
Scientific name: Cardinalis sinuatus
Size: It’s a medium-sized bird, measuring about 21cm and weighing about 24-33g.
Appearance: The pyrrhuloxia is a species in the cardinal family, native to tropical South America. Its common name refers to the bright colors of its plumage.
Males are gray with a red head and crest, a red line running down their breasts, and a reddish belly and tail. Females are buffy gray, with less red than males. Both sexes have yellowish-colored beaks and red feathers on their wings.
Although it looks quite similar to the scarlet tanager, it belongs to a different genus and is one of many members of the Cardinalidae family.
Habitat: Its natural habitats are desert scrub of the Southwest.
Diet: These birds feed mainly on insects, especially beetles, caterpillars, ants, termites, flies, grasshoppers, crickets, moths, butterflies, cicadas, true bugs, spiders, scorpions, centipedes, millipedes, snails, slugs, woodlice, and earthworms. They also eat seeds, berries, and fruits.
Breeding/nesting: They nest in holes in trees or under rocks, building a cup-shaped structure out of sticks and leaves. The female lays three eggs per clutch. Both parents care for the young; the male feeds the chicks while the female broods them. This bird breeds most of the year, although it tends to raise its brood earlier in the dry season.
8. White-Winged Crossbill
Scientific name: Loxia leucoptera
Size: This bird is about 15-17cm and weighs about 28g.
Appearance: You can tell the genders apart quickly because male crossbills have bright red heads and upper bodies. They have black wings with white stripes. Females are less colorful, having a yellowish head and chest.
They are known for being noisy and very friendly. Their calls include a variety of whistles, trill sounds, and chirps.
These White-winged crossbills are one of many types of crossbills that you might see in the woods. These birds are typically seen in small groups, often mixed with other species like blue jays and red squirrels.
Diet: They mainly eat seeds, especially spruce seeds; they also prefer seeds of tamarack and hemlock and will eat seeds of many other conifers. They also feed on buds, weed seeds, berries, and insects.
Habitat: They live in spruce forests and tamaracks and are sometimes found away from conifer forests.
Breeding/nesting: Nests are built in dead tree branches or crevices. The female builds a nest by placing twigs together and lining them with moss, lichens, bark, and hair. She then lines the inside of the nest with pine needles and wool fibers. She lays 2-4 eggs each day.
9. Elegant Trogon
Scientific name: Trogon elegans
The word “trogon” is derived from the Latin “truncatum” meaning “to nibble.” These birds are found throughout much of North America. They are often called treecreepers because they spend most of their lives climbing trees.
Size: This species is 28–30 cm long and weighs 60–78g.
Appearance: Male trogons have green upper parts, head and neck, and rose-red underparts. They have a white stripe down their underside and a black-and-white striped underside to their tails. Females are more subdued, with a pale grey back and a light grey face. Both sexes have a large bill with an orange tip.
The trogon is one of the most beautiful birds you will ever see. It has a long tail that helps balance itself while flying. Its eyes are positioned forward, giving it binocular vision.
Trogons are among the largest songbirds in North America. They have a loud call, which consists of a series of high-pitched notes followed by a deep grunt.
There are about 50 different subspecies of trogons, including the ones mentioned above.
Diet: Their diet consists mainly of insects, especially ants.
Habitat: It is mainly found in riverside upland oak, sycamore canyons, pine-oak woodlands, edge vegetation, and juniper forests.
Breeding/nesting: They nest in cavities like old woodpecker holes or abandoned squirrel dens.
10. Scarlet Honeycreeper
Scientific name: Drepanis coccinea
Size: This bird measures 15cm (6 inches) long.
Appearance: The Scarlet Honeycreeper is a small, brightly colored bird endemic to the Hawaiian Islands.
Its scientific name is Hemignathus Olivaceus, and it belongs to the honeycreepers group of birds. They are known for their long, pointed beaks and habit of feeding on nectar from flowers.
Males and females look alike; both sexes have bright red plumage with black wings and tails. However, males have brighter colors and larger bills. Females tend to have duller colors and smaller bills.
Diet: It feeds on insects, fruit, seeds, berries, and nectar.
Habitat: It lives in forests, shrublands, and open areas near water sources.
Breeding/nesting: Males build nests out of sticks and leaves. The female lays two eggs per clutch.
Scientific name: Himatione sanguinea
Appearance: The ‘Apapane is one of the best-known birds of Hawaii. This colorful little creature is characterized by its beautiful red plumage, dark wings, tail, and white vent.
The ‘Apapane bird is one of the rarest birds on earth. They are very social animals and live together in large groups. Their song consists of loud whistles and trills.
Diet/Habitat/Nesting: This bird lives exclusively in Hawaii and feeds mainly on flowers. During the day, it flies around among the trees and shrubs. At night, it nests in hollow tree trunks. But it does not build a nest; rather, it lays its eggs there.
12. Pine Grosbeak
Scientific name: Pinicola enucleator
Size: This species is one of the largest in the true finch family. It measures 20 to 25.5 cm long and weighs 52 to 78 g with a 33cm wingspan.
Appearance: Males have a short, thick bill, a long tail, a pink and grey body, and grey wings with white edges. Both sexes have similar appearances, but females are bigger and have orangish-grey plumage and brown wings with white edges.
Diet: They are often seen sitting around feeding on seeds, berries, and insects.
Habitat: They prefer coniferous forests and can even be found in urban parks.
Breeding/nesting: Their breeding season begins in April and ends in June. During this period, the birds build nests out of twigs, grasses, bark strips, and moss. Females lay 3–5 eggs, and both parents take turns incubating the eggs while the other feeds and protects the chicks. Both parents feed their young by regurgitating food into their mouths.
13. Red-Breasted Sapsucker
Scientific name: Sphyrapicus ruber
Size: It measures about 22cm long and weighs about 53.1-63.5 g with a 37-40.6 cm wingspan.
Appearance/Diet: The Red-breasted sapsuckers are one of North America’s most common woodpecker species. This bird has a bright red head and breasts with large white patches on its wings. Both sexes are alike, but juveniles are darker and don’t have red breasts. Its name comes from the fact that it feeds on sapwood, the soft inner part of trees.
Habitat: They prefer deciduous trees such as maple, oak, elm, ash, birch, poplar, and pine. These birds often nest in cavities of dead trees, including stumps, hollow logs, and crevices.
Breeding/nesting: Usually, there are three eggs per clutch. Incubation lasts about 14 days. Chicks fledge after approximately 12 weeks.
14. Red Crossbill
Scientific name: Loxia curvirostra
Size: The Red Crossbill is one of the smallest birds in North America. It’s about 14 – 20 cm long and weighs about 38g.
Appearance: This tiny bird is found throughout most of Canada and Alaska. Their name comes from their crisscrossed bill. Males are reddish-orange with brownish-red wings, while females are yellowish-grey with darker wings. Males are larger than females. Juveniles have greyish-white plumage.
Diet: These birds eat mostly seeds of spruce, pine, Douglas-fir, hemlock, or larch.
Habitat: They prefer mature evergreen forests with large cone crops.
Breeding/nesting: They nest in trees and spend winter in Central America. In the wild, Red Crossbills live in pairs. When the breeding season starts in spring, males build nests out of moss and twigs. A female lays three eggs per clutch. She incubates her eggs for 13 days. After hatching, she feeds chicks for about 11 weeks. Both parents feed the young. Young birds learn to fly within eight to 10 weeks.
15. Vermilion Flycatcher
Scientific name: Pyrocephalus obscurus
Size: It measures 14cm long and weighs about 13 g with a 25 cm wingspan.
Appearance: The Vermillion flycatcher is a small fluffy bird belonging to the family Tyrannidae. They are found throughout much of North America. This species is named after the vermilion coloring of its head and underside.
There are five subspecies of the Vermillion Flycatcher. These include the nominate race, the grayish form of the Texas Vermillion Flycatcher, the western form of the Vermillion Flyback, the southwestern form of the Vermillion, and the Mexican form of the Vermillion.
Diet: They are often found near water sources, eating flying insects such as beetles and flies.
Habitat: This small insect eater inhabits arid scrublands, farmlands, deserts, parks, and canyon mouths.
Breeding/nesting: They mate during spring and summer. Their nestlings usually hatch in June and July. The parents feed them insects while they are still young. Adults do not migrate, but some return to breed again next year.
16. Hepatic Tanager
Scientific name: Piranga flava
Size: It measures 20.3 cm long and weighs about 38 g with a 31.8 cm wingspan.
Appearance: They have a “liver-red” plumage (hence the name “Hepatic” Tanager).
They look slightly similar to the Summer Tanager but are generally less colorful than the Summer Tanager.
Females are much paler than males, with an orangish-yellow neck, forehead, and back contrasting with a greyish overall plumage on their body.
Diet: Hepatic Tanagers feed mainly on insects such as spiders, caterpillars, moths, butterflies, bees, ants, and grasshoppers. They also eat fruits, berries, nuts, seeds, flowers, and nectar.
Habitat: They can be found in open woodlands of pine or mixed pine-oak woods.
Breeding/Nesting: They build their nests in some pine species and in maple, mesquite, walnut, willow, and sycamore.
They lay two eggs on bare branches. Eggs take about 15 days to hatch. Parents raise the young alone until they can fly.
17. Crimson-Collared Grosbeak
Scientific name: Rhodothraupis celaeno
Size: This bird is 20.2-23.5 cm long and weighs about 43g.
Appearance: The Crimson-collared grosbeak is a beautiful creature that lives in Mexico. It is mainly seen in the country’s southern parts, especially near the Pacific Ocean. Its plumage is predominantly black and red. Males are larger than females; they all have black hoods, tails, and wings. Females are smaller and have greenish plumage.
Diet: This bird species likes to feed on fruits such as figs, grapes, apples, pears, peaches, plums, cherries, berries, etc. They also like to eat insects and worms.
Habitat: They prefer to live in forested areas, woodland edges, and brushy thickets.
Breeding/nesting: They pair up for breeding season from late April to early May. They build their nest in trees, shrubs, bushes, and vines.
The female lays two white eggs. Both parents care for the chicks.
18. Eared Quetzal
Scientific name: Euptilotis neoxenus
Size: It measures about 33–36 cm and weighs about 57g.
Appearance: The Eared Quetzal is a colorful bird living in western Mexico’s mountains. This type of quetzal has been known since ancient times. It was named after the Aztec god Quetzalcoatl. The name comes from the Nahuatl language, meaning “feathered serpent.”
The iridescent pop of color gives this species a beautiful appearance. The male has a dark gray head, shiny green breast, crown, wings, back, belly, and bright red under-tail. The tail is greenish-blue above and black below, with large white patches.
A dull female can be identified by the grayness of her head, chest, and upper body. The red markings on her underside are less extensive. Juveniles are similar to females except for a lighter grayish plumage and more extensive darkening of their undertails.
Habitat: This bird lives in pine-oak, oak-conifer, and pine-evergreen forests, often along streams and near rocky cliffs.
Diet: They eat a lot of bugs, cicadas, and larvae in the summer and fruits in the winter. They are very active during the day and spend most of their time flying around looking for food.
Breeding/nesting: Nesting boxes are usually made from wood and placed in trees between 16 and 30 feet (5 and 10 meters) off the ground.
They usually take over old woodpeckers’ holes and may use their beaks to modify or enlarge the hole’s size and shape to suit their needs. Nests may be reused throughout several nesting seasons.
A clutch consists of 2 to 4 light blue to greenish-blue eggs – the incubation lasts about 22 days to hatching. Both parents share the incubation and feed and protect the young.
19. Scarlet Ibis
Scientific name: Eudocimus ruber
The scarlet ibis is one of the most beautiful birds in the world, but it is also one of the rarest.
Size: It weighs about 620g and measures about 66cm.
Appearance: There are three different subspecies of scarlet ibises. These are the red-faced scarlet ibis, the white-throated scarlet ibis, and the western scarlet ibis. The scarlet ibis is very popular among photographers because of its bright colors and large size.
Adults have bright orange-red plumage, whereas their wings are marked by different colors, including dark blue or rich inky black.
Habitat: This bird lives mainly in tropical South America and part of the Caribbean.
Diet: They live in colonies and feed on insects, fish, and crustaceans. They nest in trees and bushes in the wild, often near water.
Breeding/nesting: During breeding, they build huge nests and lay about 8 to 10 eggs per clutch.
20. Cassin’s Finch
Scientific name: Haemorhous cassinii
Size: They’re 16 cm longand weigh about 24-34 g with a25-27cm wingspan.
Appearance: The Cassin’s Finch is a medium-sized finch found in subtropical regions of Africa, Asia, Australia, and South America. This species is named after French ornithologist Charles Lucien Bonaparte Cassini.
This species is often referred to as the “crested finch”, although it is actually quite different from most other finches. Males have a conical beak, a notched tail, a pinkish-red crown, and a rosy pink throat. Their wings are pinkish-brown with pink edges. Females and juveniles have brownish-white plumage.
Habitat: It inhabits evergreen mountain forests up to about 10,000 feet in elevation.
Diet: They feed mainly on seeds and fruit, especially figs.
Breeding/nesting: Cassin’s Finches form flocks during the breeding season in some areas. They nest in tree holes, laying 3 eggs per clutch.
21. Painted Redstart
Scientific name: Myioborus pictus
Size: It is the largest species of Myioborus, measuring 13–15 cm in length, 21 cm in wingspan, and weighing 8.5–11.3 g.
Appearance: The Painted Redstart is one of North America’s most colorful songbird species. They live in temperate regions across Canada and the United States.
This little bird is named for its bright red chest and belly contrasting with its black upper part. The male bird displays his gorgeous plumage during courtship season. He sings while perched on a branch and flashes his tail feathers to attract females.
Habitat: These birds are found in shaded pine-oak, oak, and oak-juniper canyons in the mountains of the Southwest. They often perch on bushes and trees near water sources.
Diet: They feed mainly on insects like grasshoppers, crickets, beetles, and flies. They nest in holes in tree trunks or rocks.
22. Red-Breasted Nuthatch
Scientific name: Sitta canadensis
Size: This is a tiny bird that weighs about 10g. Its body is 12 centimeters long.
Appearance: This bird is one of the most recognizable members of its family due to its distinctive coloring.
A female looks like a male, except she has a longer bill and slightly larger eyes.
Males’ heads have a black mask around the eye area and a dark stripe across the face with white stripes. Their upper part is grey, and their belly is brownish-orange. Young birds are similar to adults but lack orangish coloring.
Habitat: The Red-breasted Nuthatch is a common species of bird found across North America. This particular bird lives in coniferous and mixed forests, especially near water sources.
Diet: These birds are often seen feeding on insects and seeds, although they do eat some berries and fruit. Their diet consists mainly of invertebrates such as beetles, ants, crickets, grasshoppers, caterpillars, spiders, and snails.
During fall and winter, they consume conifer seeds, including those they cached earlier in the year.
Breeding/nesting: They nest in dead trees and shrubs in cavities, laying 2 eggs per clutch. Both parents care for the young, which remain in the nest for about 9 days.
When nesting, they are aggressive towards other hole-nesting species, such as the House Wrench, White-breasted Nutcracker, and Downy Wood Pecker.