Top 10 Backyard Birds of Arizona  

Arizona is lush with forests, woodlands, wetlands, and thriving suburban areas, making this state one of the best birding destinations in the country. Whether you’re an avid birdwatcher or a birding enthusiast, various species of backyard birds of Arizona are mesmerizing and beautiful to watch.   

Some birds live in this southwestern state throughout the year, while others are migratory species that trip to nature reserves for courtship and breeding. Let’s now look at the top backyard birds of Arizona and how you can spot them.  

How to Birdwatch Backyard Birds of Arizona  

Birds are fascinating, now wonder we even build feeders for them in our backyards. Bird watching in your garden is an interesting and educational way of relaxing and passing time.  

To begin birdwatching in your home, you need a field guide and binoculars. A field guide will help you identify the species of birds in Arizona while binoculars can bring all the exciting action right in front of you.  

With a bino, you can zoom in and observe closely how birds feed. You’ll also see the intricate patterns of their plumes and specific structures in their body that makes them unique.  

Common Birds of Arizona  

Found in almost every forest and open field, the House Finch is the most common bird in Arizona. You’ll also find various species of woodpeckers, doves, goldfinches, hummingbirds, sparrows, phoebes, and bluebirds in the state.

The biggest bird in Arizona is the California Candor while the smallest one is the Calliope Hummingbird.  Here are the most common and popular backyard birds of Arizona.  

1. House Finch (Haemorhous mexicanus

House finches are the most popular birds of Arizona. They’re permanent residents of the state and are featured by bright green heads and upper parts, with a pale vermiculite back, cinnamon flanks, a yellow-grey bill, and a red eye ring.  

Weight: 0.6-0.9 oz (16-27 g) 

Wingspan: 7.9-9.8 in (20-25 cm) 

Size: 5.5-6.0 in (14-15 cm) 

2. White-winged Dove (Zenaida asiatica

The white-winged dove is a large, stocky bird with a small head and long neck. Its plumage is brown and gray with paler terminations to the wings. These birds are closely related to mourning doves, which resemble them in many respects but have slightly smaller bills. 

Weight: 150 g (5.3 oz) 

Wingspan: 18.9 to 22.8 in (48–58 cm). 

Size: 29 cm (11 in) 

3. Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura

Mourning Dove differs from other doves in that it is more grayish and has a barred tail. They’re medium-sized birds that love to hang out in parks, parks, and gardens. Males are gray with black wing bars and two rows of white spots on their backs, while the females are brown with white throats and breasts.  It’s thought that they’re signs of good omens when they visit your backyard.

Weight: 112–170 g (4.0–6.0 oz) 

Wingspan: 37–45 cm (14.5-22.5 in) 

Size: 31 cm (12 in) 

4. Lesser Goldfinch (Spinus psaltria) 

The Lesser Goldfinch is a small finch with a dark brown back and yellowish underside. The wing coverts have white edges and some of the rectrices have black tips. Breeding Lesser Goldfishes possess a yellow tail. 

Weight:  0.3-0.4 oz (8-11.5 g) 

Wingspan: 14.5-22.5 in (18–20 cm)  

Size: 4.8 in (11 cm) 

5. Gila Woodpecker (Melanerpes uropygialis

The Gila Woodpecker is about the size of a jay, with greenish-black wings and a tail. Its bright red head is covered in thick feathers that are shorter in the back than they are on top. These birds of Arizona are present all year round, but can easily be spotted in the southern part of the state.  

Weight: 2-3 oz (51-79 g)  

Wingspan: 15-18 in (38-45cm) 

Size: 8-13 in (20-25 cm)   

Credits to Chic Bee via Flickr

6. White-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys)  

The White-crowned Sparrow is a small sparrow with a small head, long tail, and long legs; its bill is often hooked. They are olive-colored above and grey below, with a brown crown stripe running from the back of the head to the nape. As their name points out, they have white-colored crown feathers and are mostly part of the Arizona winter birds.  

Weight: 0.9-1.0 oz (25-28 g)  

Wingspan: 8.3-9.4 in (21-24 cm) 

Size: 7 in (18 cm)   

7. Verdin (Auriparus flaviceps

The Verdin is a small finch with distinctive grey and white throat, black cap and eye stripe, bright orange patch on the breast, and reddish bill. Females are browner than male but also has mottling that diminishes towards their chin and throat. They are common in the south and west of Arizona, and can rarely be found in the eastern and northern areas of the state.  

Weight: 0.9-1.0 oz (6-8 g)  

Wingspan: 5.5-6.3 in (14-16 cm) 

Size: 4.5 in (11 cm) 

8. Yellow-rumped Warbler (Setophaga coronata

With yellow plumage on the wings and tail, black wing tips, and long tail feathers, the yellow-rumped Warbler is a medium-sized songbird that breeds in Canada and the northern United States. These backyard birds of Arizona have a more rounded shape than their close cousins, the Blue-winged warblers. They are winter birds in Arizona who visit bird feeders occasionally.  

Weight: 0.9-1.0 oz (6-8 g)  

Wingspan: 5.5-6.3 in (14-16 cm) 

Size: 4.5 in (11 cm) 

9. Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Corthylio calendula

Brown with a thick head and tail, a long, ragged bill, and a bright red crown, the Ruby-crowned Kinglet is a small passerine bird that’s common in the eastern parts of Arizona. The males have a black mask across their forehead, while the females usually have finer streaking around the eyes or a duller coloration to the wings. You’re likely to see them more in winter than in fall or spring.  

Weight: 0.2-0.4 oz (5 to 10 g)  

Wingspan: 6.3 -7.1 in (16 to 18 cm)  

Size: 3.5-4.3 in (9 to 11 cm) 

10. Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater

With glossy black plumage on the body and a brown head, the brown-headed cowbird is often seen in Arizona during summer. Its flight is somewhat fluttering and uneven and its entire tail is bald except for an ornamental black tip. Like other cowbirds, this species destroys the eggs and nests of smaller backyard birds.  

Weight: 1.0-1.7 oz (28-49 g)  

Wingspan: 12.6 to 15 in (32-38 cm)  

Size: 5.9-7.9 in (15-20 cm) 

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