Most bird watchers and scientists say that there are roughly 9,000 to 10,000 species of birds. One of the main ways to identify them is physical appearance and once you start looking closer, it becomes obvious that birds come in many shapes and colors. And some are absolutely drop-dead gorgeous. From those with incredible eyelashes to the ones that look like tiny cotton balls, continue scrolling and check out some of the most beautiful birds from around the world.

#1

The Secretary

The Secretary

Rudi Luyten Report

Daria B
Community Member
6 months ago

Maybe it's Maybelline ♡

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Understanding the differences between bird plumages is vital to everyone who want to identify them. The term refers to a bird's feathers, including the color and pattern those feathers produce.

Birds have developed intricate plumages due to various aspects, including protection from predators, via camouflage, and sending sexual signals to potential mates. Birds usually lose and replace their feathers at least once a year through molt and regrowth.

"Each feather on a bird's body is a finely tuned structure that serves an important role in the bird's activities," Mya Thompson, the co-director for Engagement in Science and Nature for the Cornell Lab, wrote. "Feathers allow birds to fly, but they also help them show off, blend in, stay warm, and keep dry."

#2

Blue Crowned Pigeon

Blue Crowned Pigeon

Report

varwenea
Community Member
6 months ago

What an incredible blue shade.

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"Some feathers evolved as specialized airfoil for efficient flight. Others have been shaped into extreme ornamental forms that create impressive displays but may even hinder mobility. Often we can readily tell how a feather functions, but sometimes the role of a feather is mysterious and we need a scientific study to fill in the picture," Thompson explained.

A good example of one of these mysteries are feather tufts on the heads of Great Horned Owls (Bubo virginianus) which are often mistaken for ears. These modified contour feathers are completely separate from the ear and do not help owls hear, yet scientists can't explain the function of these tufts. Some think the horns are for display, others suggest that owls use them for more complete camouflage while roosting in daylight, but no one knows for sure.

#3

Long Tailed Tit

Long Tailed Tit

makieni , makieni Report

varwenea
Community Member
6 months ago

What a cute fur ball.

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#4

Malaysian Large Frogmouth And Her Baby

Malaysian Large Frogmouth And Her Baby

eggonmyface Report

Jeremy
Community Member
6 months ago

Thats some amazing camouflage

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#5

Mountain Bluebird

Mountain Bluebird

santisoukp Report

R L
Community Member
6 months ago

Looks like the colour of a glacier.

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#6

Secretary Bird

Secretary Bird

reddit.com Report

Emerald Joanna
Community Member
6 months ago

The definition of a thigh gap

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#7

Victoria Crowned Pigeon

Victoria Crowned Pigeon

The Virginia Zoo Report

varwenea
Community Member
6 months ago

Beautiful. Looks like a creature from "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them".

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#8

Grandala

Grandala

adityaa_chavan Report

R L
Community Member
6 months ago

The blue is so vibrant

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#9

Beautiful Strawberry Finch

Beautiful Strawberry Finch

reddit.com Report

Monika Soffronow
Community Member
6 months ago

The Strawberry Finch is pre-dipped in sugar for added sweetness.

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#10

The Nicobar Pigeon

The Nicobar Pigeon

Sue Demetriou Report

varwenea
Community Member
6 months ago

So iridescent and with a hip nose ring too.

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#11

The Harpy Eagle

The Harpy Eagle

leon_moore_nature_experience Report

varwenea
Community Member
6 months ago

This one is HUGE too!

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#12

Pigeon With A Curly Perm

Pigeon With A Curly Perm

emelbi_artist Report

Capermom
Community Member
6 months ago

Looks like someone sprinkled shaved chocolate on her..! :-)

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#13

Dracula Parrot

Dracula Parrot

Mike Peel Report

Capermom
Community Member
6 months ago

Damn...he looks like he survived a bush fire and came out stronger and meaner...

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#14

South Philippine Dwarf Kingfisher

South Philippine Dwarf Kingfisher

migueldavid.deleon Report

MsM
Community Member
6 months ago

He looks like a cheeky fellow

Sharon Nicoll
Community Member
6 months ago

I'd call him "beaky!"

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Jill Peters
Community Member
6 months ago

My what fluecent colours —-could not replicate those colours from my paint box.

Le Box of Shame
Community Member
6 months ago

i imagine that this is the bird version of Puck from Midsummer Night's Dream

Sue Knerl
Community Member
6 months ago

Overkill on the bill.

Marek Yanchurak
Community Member
6 months ago

Overbill?

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Annabell H.
Community Member
6 months ago

This thing is like 80% beak

Debra Powers
Community Member
6 months ago

Oh, the colors!

BatMom
Community Member
6 months ago

OMG that head-to-body ratio!

Alexandra Ghobrial
Community Member
6 months ago

That's a big beak compared to the body!

Sandy McCulloch
Community Member
6 months ago

Lovely

mermaidgirl960
Community Member
6 months ago

Bigger beak than him little guy! Did someone use the shrink ray on his body?

Elga Konietzny
Community Member
6 months ago

special,yes

sharron lynn parsons
Community Member
6 months ago

Very pretty, but big beak, such tiny bird !!!

Linda Brown
Community Member
6 months ago

Very cute, long beak

Majken Mathis
Community Member
6 months ago

Very pretty

Animal lover❤
Community Member
6 months ago

Awww

Bruce Gaines
Community Member
6 months ago

pretty

Robert Robi Z
Community Member
5 months ago

Everything dwarf but the beak

Nurse Bambi
Community Member
6 months ago

I haven't seen such a cute little fella before

Marlene Ricker
Community Member
6 months ago

He is just so cute with his pretty colours and his long beak!

Teresa Groth
Community Member
6 months ago

God’s art is fantastic, gorgeous little bird!

Faith Nicole
Community Member
6 months ago

Aww, he's so dam adorable !😍 his colors are so vibrant and beautiful.. I'm guessing in this situation, the cuter the bird the harder the peck 🤷‍♀️ since that beak looks like it could break the bones in my finger if done properly

Denise Mclean
Community Member
6 months ago

Kingfisher, look at the beak ! Makes sense !

Elizabeth Betsy Michaud
Community Member
6 months ago

His beak is almost 2//3 of his body and with those flaming colors~~!!!

Yoseph Workeneh
Community Member
6 months ago

So where are we I had just fainted (too cute)

Cici Qiu
Community Member
6 months ago

put a carrot and a nectarine together and... BAM

Ellie Ragsdale
Community Member
6 months ago

So tiny and colorful!

Elaine Mattingly
Community Member
6 months ago

Thirty letters in his name , aw come on.

Lynne Stankard
Community Member
6 months ago

How teeny tiny is he xx

Denise
Community Member
6 months ago

That's one big ........

Vicki Perizzolo
Community Member
6 months ago

Gorgeous

okpkpkp
Community Member
6 months ago

With a beak like that the fish don't know what hits them.

EMMA-SOFIE HALLAN -
Community Member
6 months ago

Really Beautiful!

Julie Lloyd
Community Member
6 months ago

Nobody will ever say "You Need a Bigger Beak".

Lass Gili
Community Member
6 months ago (edited)

His quite startlingly colour and beak

Mary Fiore
Community Member
6 months ago

Gosh, have a BEAK, will ya?!

Jazmin Rebel
Community Member
6 months ago

Not dwarf durp

katboxjanitor
Community Member
6 months ago

Delightful colors

Sharon Smith
Community Member
6 months ago

Wow.

Debbie Morris
Community Member
6 months ago

I wonder if he glows in the dark?

Yvette Fernandez
Community Member
6 months ago

Adorable!

CR Harvey
Community Member
6 months ago

Wow, what a jewel!

desert29rat
Community Member
6 months ago

Gorgeous colors.

Julie cohn
Community Member
6 months ago

Okay who the fuck is responsible for naming birds

Marek Yanchurak
Community Member
6 months ago

Well, kingfishers do eat fish (among other things), and this is definitely a small species of the family. And, I imagine, it's found in the southern Philippines. So...

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#15

Tilhi

Tilhi

wallmika Report

Jonna Saari 🇫🇮
Community Member
6 months ago

Tilhi in Finnish 🇫🇮💙 In English it's the Bohemian waxwing (according to Wikipedia at least). Such a beautiful bird with a lovely voice!

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#16

Bearded Reedling

Bearded Reedling

bird_drangsland Report

Daria B
Community Member
6 months ago

Metal rock star bird

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#17

Quetzal

Quetzal

Vaclav Sebek Report

logical fallacy
Community Member
6 months ago

This bird has been my favourite ever since I was little. Saw it in a NatGeo coffeetable book on exotic birds when I was about four. I named her Green (because I'm very original) and went to say hello to the illustration every day for years. Still stand by it though, the tiny beak makes it really cute.

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#18

Sword-Billed Hummingbird

Sword-Billed Hummingbird

Supreet Sahoo Report

Nicolas Schirvel
Community Member
6 months ago

Hello. My name is Hummingo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.

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#19

Golden Pheasant

Golden Pheasant

joinus12345 Report

glowworm2
Community Member
6 months ago

These birds are so gorgeous.

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#20

Mandarink Duck

Mandarink Duck

Rovdyr Report

Perfumista Perfumista
Community Member
6 months ago

We had one in Central Park for a while, most beautiful thing I've ever seen in person

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#21

Inca Tern

Inca Tern

Truus & Zoo Report

MsM
Community Member
6 months ago

Kind sir, I mustache you a question

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#22

Guineafowl

Guineafowl

Francois Malan Report

varwenea
Community Member
6 months ago

He reminds me of Little Richard or Prince. Both are badass.

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#23

The Black-Throated Bushtit

The Black-Throated Bushtit

joinus12345 Report

Kesyra
Community Member
6 months ago

I keep reading that as bullshit.

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#24

Crested Duck

Crested Duck

JerryP Report

logical fallacy
Community Member
6 months ago

They're the judges of the lake.

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#25

Taiwan Blue Magpie

Taiwan Blue Magpie

joinus12345 Report

Monika Soffronow
Community Member
6 months ago

Stunning photo!

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#26

Pygmy Wren Babbler

Pygmy Wren Babbler

joinus12345 Report

Terd Fergison
Community Member
6 months ago

He's all feet.

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#27

Rufous-Crested Coquette

Rufous-Crested Coquette

Supreet Sahoo Report

DforDorothy
Community Member
6 months ago

It's definitely coquetting with me. 😉

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#28

Plate-Billed Mountain Toucan

Plate-Billed Mountain Toucan

Supreet Sahoo Report

glowworm2
Community Member
6 months ago

Holy crap! Toucan Sam is real!

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#29

Cock-Of-The-Rock

Cock-Of-The-Rock

Supreet Sahoo Report

MsM
Community Member
6 months ago

I'm exercising serious restraint regarding comments I could make on this one...

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#30

Lady Amherst's Pheasant

Lady Amherst's Pheasant

joinus12345 Report

Monika Soffronow
Community Member
6 months ago

This famous Picasso was painted as he progressed from his blue period to experimenting with cubism.

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Note: this post originally had 50 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.