Winged Wonders: Beautiful Canadian Birds Captured on Camera
Whether they're perched at the backyard feeder or soaring high in an azure sky, our fine feathered friends always make beautiful subjects for photography.
A Gorgeous Gallery of Canadian Birds
Talk about “a bird in the hand”! While hiking in Hendrie Valley in the Hamilton area, Brenda Doherty of Ariss, Ontario, snapped this great shot of a black-capped chickadee feeding from a woman’s gloved hand.
Photo: Dale Matthies
You’ll find plenty of sandpipers along the shores of Lake Huron. They’re as much a staple of Goderich, Ontario’s beach as the sun, sand and spectacular sunsets! Thanks to Dale Matthies for sharing.
Photo: Alexandra Fontaine
No gallery of Canadian birds would be complete without a robin. The bird that represents the return of spring made a challenging subject for Alexandra Fontaine’s lens. “Playing peekaboo in the tree way up above our house,” she writes. “I still was able to get a shot of him though he tried to elude me.”
Photo: Delia McCrae
Who’s that hiding behind those pussywillows? According to Sidney, B.C.’s Delia McCrae, it’s a spotted towhee, snapped in its native habitat at Island View Beach on Vancouver Island. “This spotted towhee is roughly the size of a robin and forages on the ground for food,” Delia writes. “This very vocal bird dines on insects, seeds and berries.”
Photo: Patricia Parker
Strike a pose! Patricia Powell photographed this cormorant drying his wings on the banks of the Annapolis River.
Check out more spectacular photos that’ll have you packing your bags for Nova Scotia.
Photo: James Carswell
If you’ve ever wondered who’s making that racket in the marsh, here’s your culprit. With their characteristic okalee! call, red winged blackbirds are among the most distinctive-sounding Canadian birds. Photographer James Carswell captured this pretty specimen while perched on a cattail.
Rene Wagner of Sceptre, Saskatchewan, writes, “As I was sitting down for a bite to eat, I glanced out my window and noticed this pretty little redpoll. It had been eating out of a feeder I’d set up and now seemed to be looking for something to drink. Luckily, there was fresh snow on my deck. I grabbed my camera and captured a pic of this little beauty.”
The common redpoll is a member of the finch family. These Canadian birds can be spotted year round in the Northwest Territories, as well as Newfoundland and Labrador. Their distinctive red foreheads are—you guessed it—where their name is derived from.
Discover the best bird watching spot in every province.
Karen Cook of Kingston, Nova Scotia, says, “This female northern cardinal looked so lovely with ice and snow coating her exquisite face.”
Duane Larson of Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, writes, “I see these beautiful birds in my front yard all the time, but I had never photographed any. One day last winter, I decided to grab my camera and attempt to capture some pics. This is my first photo of a Bohemian waxwing.”
Here’s more photography that showcases the beauty of the Canadian winter.
Does this handsome cardinal look familiar? He was once the cover model for an issue of Our Canada magazine! Brenda Doherty of Ariss, Ontario, snapped this wonderful shot while walking in nearby St. Jacobs, Ontario, on a beautiful winter morning.
Psst—St. Jacobs made our roundup of the best day trips from Hamilton.
Nicole Watson of Kingston, Ontario, snapped this gorgeous shot of a male eastern bluebird. The colourful thrushes breed throughout Ontario (with the exception of the Hudson Bay lowlands) and often appear in Canadian folk art as a symbol of springtime. Look out for them in apple orchards and the boreal forest!
Read up on the efforts to save Canada’s mountain bluebird.
Francis Parker of Deloraine, Manitoba, captured this ruby-throated hummingbird at a nearby feeder. These tiny creatures can beat their wings up to 80 times per second, and need to consume one-and-a-half to three times their body weight each day. They’re one of two species of hummingbirds in the Canadian Prairies, the other being rufous hummingbirds.
Discover the best wildlife experiences across Canada.
Photographer Karen Allin snapped these two sparrows on a fall day in Toronto, Ont. Up to 25 species of the Emberizidae sparrow family can be found in Canada; if you hear a sparrow singing, it’s most likely a male one.
Check out some of the best bird-watching spots in Toronto.
Found throughout southern Canada, it’s no wonder these loud and aggressive birds are the name of a Toronto ball club. They’re not just being obnoxious, though: jays will sometimes use their cries to warn other creatures of danger. Thanks to Raymond St. Jean of Scarborough, Ontario for sharing this awesome pic!
Don’t miss our gallery of incredible blue jay photography.
The only eagle species exclusive to North America, most of Canada’s bald eagle population can be found along British Columbia’s Pacific Coast, as well as Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and northwestern Ontario. George Vanderberg of Lethbridge, Alberta, spotted this particular eagle near B.C.’s Surveyor’s Lake.
Find out 10 essential experiences on Canada’s west coast.
Photographer Vickie Emms stumbled upon this cedar waxwing in her own yard in Anola, Manitoba. Known for their pointed wings and black mask, these small birds can be found in an orchard or woodland near you!
Stocking your feeder for the winter? Here’s what not to feed wild birds.
Great Blue Heron
Did you know that more than 1,000 great blue herons nest on La Grande Île in Lac Saint-Pierre near Montréal each year? With an average height of one metre, this is the largest heron species in North America. Dianne Reid of New Westminster, B.C., captured one particular blue heron looking, dare we say, grouchy?
Check out the incredible nature preserve at Îles-de-Boucherville National Park, just outside Montreal.
How lucky was photographer Norma Keith of Baltimore, Ontario, to be able to feed this cute creature and snap a pic? Red-breasted nuthatches can be found throughout Canada, while the white-breasted nuthatch can only be spotted in select parts of southern Canada.
Check out more breathtaking bird photography from across the country.
Did you know that 16 of the world’s 146 owl species can be found in Canada? Photographer Christy Turner beautifully captured these baby owlets near her home in Calgary.
If you enjoyed this gallery of Canadian birds, be sure to check out our guide to the birds of the Okanagan.