California Bird Identification

California Bird Identification
With habitats ranging from the arid oven of Death Valley to the lush and green redwood forest, California is home to a wide variety of animal life, including birds. Making a position bird identification is a matter of noting bird characteristics and using them in a process of elimination. If you know a bit about the birds you are looking for, finding them will prove relatively easy.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need:
  • Binoculars
  • Binoculars
Step 1
Look at the bird to judge its relative size and shape, as well as the length and shape of its tail. For example, the yellow and black-billed magpies are large birds with proportional bodies. Both have a long tail.
Step 2
Look at the bill, taking note of the color, size, and shape. For example, the yellow-billed magpie is unique to California, and the only thing separating it from the common, black-billed magpie is the color of its bill. A different kind of bill identification is detectable in the double-breasted cormorant, which has a medium-sized bill that is hooked at the end.
Step 3
Examine the bird's colors. The famous roadrunner, for example, is not as colorful as cartoons would have you believe. It has a whitish underside and the rest has brown, white, and black speckles. It is found in southern and central California.
Step 4
Take note of the bird's habitat. The rock wren is a ground nester found in California's mountainous areas.
Step 5
Observe how the bird is behaving. The spotted owl, which is famous symbol of the redwood forest's ecosystem, is an aerial diver that preys mostly on flying squirrels and woodrats, but also on bats and other owls.

Article Written By Edwin Thomas

Edwin Thomas has been writing since 1997. His work has appeared in various online publications, including The Black Table, Proboxing-Fans and others. A travel blogger, editor and writer, Thomas has traveled from Argentina to Vietnam in pursuit of stories. He holds a Master of Arts in international affairs from American University.

Don't Miss a Thing!

All our latest outdoor content delivered to your inbox once a week.



We promise to keep your email address safe and secure.