Did you spot a bird with a black cap on your porch or in your neighbor’s backyard, and now you are eager to learn what that unique-looking bird was?
If YES, then you are in the right place!
Today’s article was specially prepared for all of you – bird lovers that want to explore and learn about new species and read interesting facts about these distinctive-looking birds. We will cover different species while we focus on an exciting detail that connects them.
Below you will find our list of ten birds with black caps, as well as the essential information related to them, read on and enjoy!
10 Unique Birds With Black Caps
- Black-capped Chickadees
- Carolina Chickadees
- White-breasted Nuthatches
- Bank Mynas
- Eurasian blackcap
- White Wagtails
- American Goldfinches
- Black-crested Titmouse
- Blackpoll Warblers
- Western Grebes
Scientific Name: Poecile atricapillus
Weight: 0.3 – 0.5 oz
Wingspan: 6 – 8 in.
Coloration and identification: Black-capped Chickadees are small and cute birds that have black caps on their heads and cold-colored feathering. Usually, these birds have white, grey, and black feathers over their body, while the patterns are similar.
For black, you can see it mainly around their head, with feathering forming the cap, and white is the head and neck area of the bird, while the rest of the body is covered in grey, which can be ashen gray for the wings and mild tones one for the stomach area.
Distribution and Habitat: The birds are commonly seen in the upper states of America and Canada. Usually prefer to live in evergreen forests, open areas, parks, willow thickets, and even disturbed areas.
It will not be a surprise if you even see some in your backyard. These birds are fans of open areas with trees because they can find their food easier in such places.
While on it, we can say that their diet includes insects, berries, seeds, and sometimes worms.
Nesting: The black-capped chickadee prefers to nest in natural cavities or abandoned downy woodpecker cavities instead of making its own. But they also make their own cavities if they can’t find any available. Both males and females participate in the excavating.
Inside the cavity, the female makes a cup-shaped nest. The nest is assembled out of harder materials on the outside and softer material, like rabbit fur, is used for lining.
Most of the time, their nests are small and, on a height of an average of 7 to 10 meters. However, the nest can be as low as 1-2 meters from the ground and yet high as 20 meters in the tree.
Scientific Name: Poecile carolinensis
Weight: 0.3 – 0.45 oz
Wingspan: 5.9 – 7.9 in.
Coloration and identification: Another chickadee bird with a black cap on our list is not much different from the previous one. Carolina chickadee has its dark cap, gray wings, and back as you can expect. Its tummy is covered in dirty white feathering and has a black bib.
If you are not very familiar with the two species, it will be easy to mix both birds due to the same colorations they share.
Distribution and Habitat: The birds were first found and named in Carolina State. They love to habitat woodland areas, preferably the delicious-coniferous ones. But, similar to their cousins, they like parks and open regions; someone’s backyard would also suffice for a small flock of 5-8 birds.
Surprisingly enough, these birds do not mind humans that much. That allows them to inhabit even the suburban areas around towns and cities.
Nesting: Once again, similarly to the other chickadees, the Carolina ones excavate their nests in trees. Usually, they would pick the edges of a forest or an area with open land yet enough trees to serve as home and gather points for the flock.
Most of the time, the nests they create are high up to 20 – 25 meters up in the tree. They often use abandoned ones of other birds or create their own but in areas where they can enjoy their plants and animals ( insects ) diet.
Read Also: Biggest Blue Birds
Scientific Name: Sitta carolinensis
Weight: 0.63 – 1.06 oz
Wingspan: 7.9 – 10.6 in.
Coloration and identification: Another beautiful bird that has a black cap on its head and grayish and white feathering featured over its back. The face and underparts of this bird are white.
Distribution and Habitat: White-breasted nuthatches can be seen all year round in most of the USA and some parts of Mexico.
Its favorite habitats are the deciduous forest of America. However, you can also spot these birds living in coniferous forests too!
Like other small birds, white-breasted nuthatches can be found in parks, near forest edges, or near open areas where they can find trees to live.
Nesting: Regarding their nesting habits, we can say that they like to do it inside tall trees. Usually, they do not excavate their own homes but occasionally enlarge them. Besides that, they look for naturally formed ones or left by other birds like woodpeckers.
Scientific Name: Acridotheres ginginianus
Weight: 2.3 – 2.9 oz
Wingspan: 12.1 – 14.8 in.
Coloration and identification: Bank mynas are easily identified birds with a grayish, white, and black colorization.
Usually, their heads are covered in black feathers, forming a cap-like image. Their bodies are grayish-white to ashen gray-colored except for parts of their wings which are black.
As a finisher, these amazing birds have a unique orange face coloration that resembles a mask around their eyes.
Distribution and Habitat: The birds are native to the Indian Subcontinent and can be seen in parts of Africa and Indonesia or, in rare cases, some other areas in Asia.
Their natural habitat is usually around places where they can find food and water easily. Examples are freshwaters, wetlands, various anthropogenic biomes, and even agricultural areas. However, bank mynas can sometimes be seen within and around Indian cities.
Nesting: When it comes to their nesting, bank mynas usually create their nests in earth walls and embankments of open wells. In suburban and urban areas, they can even make use of holes in brick walls.
Scientific Name: Sylvia atricapilla
Weight: 0.56 – 0.88 oz
Wingspan: 7.8 – 9 in.
Coloration and identification: The Eurasian blackcap is a tiny cute bird with, as the name suggests, black feathering that covers its head. Its eyes and beak can also be black, while its body is usually a grayish color.
In the females and the young birds, you can notice how the black cap turns into more of a brown one, giving the best hint to guess their sex and age.
Distribution and Habitat: The distribution of this bird is mainly around Europe, where it stays all year round, in some northern parts of Africa and the middle east.
Their primary habitats of choice are all around wooded or scrubby areas where they can live in peace and find their precious food. However, it will not be a surprise to see them in backyards, gardens, and even open fields where they look for food.
Nesting: When it comes to their nesting habits, they are different compared to the previous birds on the list. For example, the Eurasian blackcap tends to nest in low scrubs in nests made with care that take the shape of a neat small cup.
Related: Blue-headed Black Birds
Scientific Name: Motacilla alba
Weight: 0.56 – 0.82 oz
Wingspan: 9.8 – 11.8 in.
Coloration and identification: White wagtails share the same colors as the previous black-capped birds. Their feathering consists of black, white, and grayish colors.
Usually, the black one is over their head, forming the black cap, the white one forms a mask on their face, while some parts are over their wings. The rest of the body of this small cute bird is covered in grayish feathers.
Distribution and Habitat: Their distribution over the globe can surprise you. You can expect to find these birds from Europe to Alaska.
White wagtails’ often inhabit grasslands. They prefer to live in the open to find food, so it is normal to see them there. Other places which they love are the wetlands. Due to their wide distribution and the enormous human population in many areas, you can find them even in city parks, backyards, paved car parks, and so on.
Nesting: When nesting, these birds look for a hole to live in. Usually, this will be somewhere on a river bank or in an appropriate place in the wild. Due to their wide distribution and inevitable meeting with the human population, they often live in the cities. As a result, these tiny birds have adapted to live in brick walls, bridges, and various buildings.
Scientific Name: Spinus tristis
Weight: 0.39 – 0.71 oz
Wingspan: 7.6 – 8.7 in.
Coloration and identification: With these birds, the coloration they have can vary during different times. If we look at the male during the breeding season, they have mainly golden yellow feathering over their whole bodies. The exception is the black on their wings and the head ( that forms the cap).
Outside the breeding season, their golden coloration changes to the grayish, light brown one. In addition, the black cap turns brown, and the face area is covered in pale yellow feathers.
Distribution and Habitat: The distribution of this bird is mainly in North America, and it varies from place to place. Somewhere it spends all year round, and in other areas, it stays for a specific time.
Its favorite habitats are mainly open lands like fields, floodplains, areas with high grass, or even agricultural ones like sunflower fields.
Nesting: The nests are usually built by the female. Unlike many other birds, the American goldfinch builds its homes in high shrub-covered from the top with leaves to stay hidden but usually open from below so birds can easily access them.
Scientific Name: Baeolophus atricristatus
Weight: 0.62 – 0.85 oz
Wingspan: 9.2 – 11 in.
Coloration and identification: The Black-crested Titmouse is a fascinating little bird. Its head feathering has quite a unique shape covered in black plumage that forms a cap.
When it comes to its body, the whole of it is covered in grayish colors. For example, its back and wings are covered in ashen gray feathers. The breast and face area, however, are colored in dirty white to light grayish feathers that separate the two nuances of gray.
Distribution and Habitat: Another representative of the North American birds is here. These small birds tend to live all year round in warmer places. They are native to southern Texas, Oklahoma, and east-central Mexico. Occasionally, vagrants have been spotted as far north and east as St. Louis, Missouri.
Its main habitats of choice are near the sea, usually in mixed forests. However, seeing this bird in parks, shrubs, and orchards is not surprising.
Nesting: When we talk about nesting, we ought to say that this bird is from the ones that love to live in already created homes. Usually, they would love to pick an abandoned cavity in tall trees. So it is not weird for them to pick already prepared nest boxes or create nests in tall tree branches.
Scientific Name: Setophaga striata
Weight: 0.34 – 0.75 oz
Wingspan: 7.8 – 9.8 in.
Coloration and identification: Blackpoll warblers are exciting birds that do not have many colors in their feathers but have interesting patterns. The breeding male has a black cap on its head, formed by many dark black feathers. Its body is covered in a mixture of colors due to the pattern the feather form, usually in white, black and brown to grayish stains.
The female birds are a little bit more washed out; their overall coloration is light brown to grayish feathers.
Distribution and Habitat: The distribution of the species is mainly in North America. However, it can be found in different forests from one end to the other.
Blackpoll warblers live in coniferous forests. However, they do not pay that much attention during their breeding periods and can be found in any forested habitat.
Nesting: One of the few listed birds today creates a nest and does not live in a cavity. Instead, blackpoll warblers make their nest on a tree branch or trunk. The heigh can vary anywhere from 2 to 12 meters and, in some cases, over 20 (rarely). Females make their cup-shaped nests from sticks, twigs, and lichen.
Scientific Name: Aechmophorus occidentalis
Weight: 3.1 lbs
Wingspan: 22.8 – 25.2 in.
Coloration and identification: These birds are easy to identify. They have exciting coloration formed by dark gray, white, and black colors of their feathers. If you see one, you will first notice their black cap over their head ( pitch black feathering). The red eyes are easy to spot too!
Besides that, western grebes’ bodies are mainly covered in white feathers – usually neck and breast area while the feathers on their wings and back are dark gray.
Distribution and Habitat: They are mostly found in the western parts of North America, but during the breathing season, they can be found further east. These birds mostly live near the west coast and migrate for the breeding season in the inner part of the continent.
However, the colonies in the southwest of the United States and in Mexico live there all year round. Their favorite habitats are freshwater areas like lakes and marshes, where these birds flock together for protection.
Nesting: When it comes to nesting, the western grebe that lives near water sources builds its nests near its edges. For example, near a lake edge where it can find floating vegetation. Usually, they build them in a way that they are sheltered from waves, but not into the deep to make them secure yet safe for their offspring.
And there you go. With this, we conclude our list of birds with black caps.
Examples of birds with black caps include black-capped chickadees, bank mynas, white wagtails, and western grebes, among others.
Hopefully, the next time you see some of these amazing flying creatures, you’ll be able to recognize them with ease.
Thank you for reading. If you liked this article, here’s another popular bird topic: List of White Birds With Black Beaks.