2023 Bonanza Bird #1

Exploring the World of the Flammulated Owl with Birdorable

Birdorable Flammulated Owl

Welcome to our 2023 Birdorable Bonanza! For the next 10 days we'll reveal a new cute bird that will join our big Birdorable flock! Today the Flammulated Owl kicks off our celebration.

The tiny Flammulated Owl, with its unique flame-like markings, might just be one of the forest's best-kept secrets!

The Flammulated Owl gets its intriguing name from its reddish-brown feathers that have flame-like patterns. This special coloring makes them experts at camouflage, blending seamlessly into the bark of pine trees. Living in the dense forest, these owls are like little guardians who watch over the trees under the cloak of night.

As night falls, these small yet mighty birds become active. Their big, round eyes are perfect for their nocturnal lifestyle. Just like a superhero with night vision, these owls can spot their prey in the dark with incredible accuracy. And what’s on their menu? Insects! Moths, beetles, and crickets are their favorites. With their silent flight, they swoop down and catch these insects mid-air, keeping the forest ecosystem balanced.

But don’t let their size fool you. Measuring only about the size of a soda can, Flammulated Owls may be small, but they play a vital role in their habitat. They're not just skilled hunters but also crucial for controlling insect populations, which is essential for a healthy forest. One of their favorite foods is butterflies; moths are also favored.

Find Birdorable Flammulated Owl apparel and gift items on Amazon:

Cute Flammulated Owl gifts

Guess tomorrow's bird ...

Get ready to meet our feathered mystery for tomorrow! This South African beauty is a visual delight with its vibrant plumage. Its unique name is derived from its distinctive call, which resonates through its habitat, which includes fynbos and scrubby vegetation. Can you guess what bird it might be?

Get ready for our 15th annual Birdorable Bonanza, starting on Monday, November 27th! We're thrilled to continue our tradition of introducing an array of new birds during this special event. Over the years, our Birdorable Bonanzas have become a cherished tradition, and you can revisit the previous years' celebrations right here: 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022

For 10 straight days, we'll unveil a new feathered friend each day on Birdorable. By the end of this event, we'll have an impressive collection featuring a whopping 785 different bird species on Birdorable.com! Join us as we celebrate these wonderful birds and share our love for avian diversity.

Guess the first bird ...

Here's a sneak peek at the first bird in this year's Bonanza. This elusive owl, known for its petite size and cryptic plumage, is often found in North America's dense forests. Its name hints at a fiery detail associated with its appearance. On Monday, we'll reveal the identity of this mysterious bird and its preferred nocturnal haunts. Can you guess which owl we're featuring?

In the United States we celebrate Thanksgiving today. On this special day, as we gather with loved ones to give thanks, we want to express our gratitude for the beautiful birds that grace our world. We are truly thankful for these incredible feathered friends that inspire us every day.

As we celebrate today, let's also remember to protect and preserve the habitats that these birds call home, ensuring that they continue to enrich our lives and the world with their presence.

We hope you have a fantastic Thanksgiving filled with love, laughter, and delicious treats. Whether you're birdwatching, enjoying a feast, or simply relaxing, may your day be filled with warmth and happiness. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Bird Term: Lek

Read About Lekking: What It Means And Which Birds Do It

Greater Prairie-Chicken Lek in Nebraska by Gregory "Slobirdr" Smith (CC BY-SA 2.0 Deed)

A lek is a group of male animals, most commonly birds or insects, that gathers as part of a breeding strategy. The males perform displays in an arena-like setting in order to lure observing females into mating.

Lekking in most bird species is like a big mating party where males perform dances, sing songs, and display strange body art to entice females. Females gather around the lek to watch the performances, comparing the potential partners and then eventually accepting the invitation of a male bird to mate. But then the party is over -- males are completely uninvolved in nesting activities like incubation and brooding.

Lesser Prairie-Chicken Lek in New Mexico by Larry Lamsa (CC BY 2.0 Deed)

Although this type of mate selection might seem to indicate a lack of partner fidelity, in many bird species females only come to lekking sites when their (previous) male partner is present.

Some bird species that display lekking behavior include the Long-wattled Umbrellabird, Black Grouse, Sage Grouse, Capercaillie, Kori Bustard, Sharp-tailed Grouse, birds-of-paradise, the Kakapo, and the Greater Prairie-Chicken and Lesser Prairie-Chicken.

Other species that engage in lekking include some types of paper wasps, fruit bats, bullfrogs, and moths.

Sage Grouse Lek in Oregon by Nick Myatt, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (CC BY-SA 2.0 Deed)

Birdorable Gifts Featuring Birds that Lek

2022 Bonanza Bird #10

Spotlight on the Elegant Trogon: Nature's Colorful Masterpiece

Birdorable Elegant Trogon

Today we are concluding our 2022 Birdorable Bonanza by adding a colorful bird of the New World: the Elegant Trogon!

Elegant Trogons are native to a wide range across Mexico and Central America, where they reside in a variety of woodland habitat types. There is a summer breeding population in southeast Arizona.

The Elegant Trogon is a beautifully colored bird. Adult males have a black face and throat, iridescent green upperparts, a red belly separated by a white band, grey wings, and a finely speckled undertail.

Shop for gifts featuring our cute bird on Zazzle, including this Birdorable Elegant Trogon Tote Bag.

Photo of an Elegant Trogon

This concludes our 2022 Birdorable Bonanza. Thank you for following along! We wish our fans and followers all the best for the holiday season and good wishes for the coming year!

2022 Bonanza Bird #9

Introducing the Red-eyed Vireo: A New World Songbird with a Memorable Tune

Birdorable Red-eyed Vireo

Today's new Birdorable is a New World songbird. Look-up, over here, see me, up here, it's the Red-eyed Vireo!

That funny introduction above refers to a common mnemonic, or memory aid, to help birders remember the repetitive song of the Red-eyed Vireo. This songster is often heard before it is seen.

Besides the iconic song, Red-eyed Vireos can be recognized by the pretty red eyes they develop as adults, and their distinctive eye stripe.

Red-eyed Vireo

Tomorrow we'll finish off our 2022 Birdorable Bonanza with one of our most requested species. It's a colorful bird with a fancy name and is found across Mexico, Central America, and southeast Arizona. Can you guess tomorrow's new bird?

2022 Bonanza Bird #8

Meet the Black-faced Spoonbill: A Unique and Endangered Bird

Birdorable Black-faced Spoonbill

Today the Black-faced Spoonbill joins Birdorable!

This special bird is native to a small range across eastern Asia. Of all of the six species of spoonbill, the Black-faced Spoonbill has the most limited range, and is the only species to be considered Endangered (the others all have a conservation status of Least Concern). The biggest threat they face is loss of habitat.

Black-faced Spoonbills can be recognized by their long spatula-shaped bills, large white bodies, and namesake black faces. Breeding birds (like our cartoon cutie) develop a yellow band at the base of the neck. Young birds, and adults outside of breeding, lack the yellow band (like the photo example below).

Black-faced Spoonbill by TANAKA Juuyoh (田中十洋) (CC BY 2.0)

Shop for gifts featuring the new bird on Amazon, including our Birdorable Black-faced Spoonbill Tank Top.

Tomorrow our Birdorable Bonanza will continue when we add a North American species named for the color of its eyes. This passerine has a repetitive song and is often heard before it is seen. Do you know the bird?

2022 Bonanza Bird #7

A Closer Look at the African Firefinch: Sub-Saharan Africa's Finchy Jewel

Birdorable African Firefinch

Today, we're delighted to introduce a new addition to our collection: the African Firefinch, a species of finch that boasts a widespread presence across the diverse habitats of sub-Saharan Africa. This charming bird is a wonderful example of the rich avian biodiversity found in this region.

The African Firefinch is known for its striking coloration, which makes it a favorite among bird enthusiasts. It comes in various subspecies, each with its own unique shade and intensity of colors. Generally, all subspecies share common color patterns, with lovely reddish underparts that provide a stark contrast to their olive-brown upperparts. However, the exact shade of red and the balance between the red and olive-brown hues can differ significantly among the subspecies.

One of the most notable features of the African Firefinch is the distinctive white spots that males of the species display on their flanks. These spots add an extra layer of beauty to their appearance and are one of the key identifiers for distinguishing males from females in the species.

African Firefinch, Sakania, DR Congo by Nigel Voaden (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Find African Firefiinch gifts on Amazon, including this Birdorable African Firefinch Raglan Tee.

Tomorrow we'll add an endangered species of spoonbill to Birdorable. Can you guess which of the 6 species of spoonbill will join the flock?

2022 Bonanza Bird #6

Exploring the World of the Blue-headed Parrot with Birdorable

Birdorable Blue-headed Parrot

Today's new Birdorable bird is our 102nd new species of parrot! Welcome the Blue-headed Parrot to our flock!

The Blue-headed Parrot is a medium-sized parrot known for its striking appearance and vibrant lifestyle, primarily found in and around the lush Amazon basin in South America. This region, notable for its rich biodiversity, provides the perfect habitat for these colorful birds.

These parrots have a particular fondness for a variety of fruits, berries, and seeds, which they forage in the dense canopies of the rainforest. Their diet plays a crucial role not only in their nutrition but also in the ecosystem, as they contribute to seed dispersal, aiding in the propagation of various plant species.

They are cavity nesters, preferring the natural hollows found in either living trees or old tree stumps. This choice of nesting site offers protection for their young and is a testament to their adaptability and resourcefulness.

The most striking feature of the Blue-headed Parrot is, undoubtedly, its plumage. The body of these birds is predominantly bright green, providing excellent camouflage among the foliage. This green is beautifully contrasted by the vivid blue coloration on their heads, from which they derive their name. Interestingly, both males and females of the species share this striking color pattern, making them visually indistinguishable from one another.

Blue-headed Parrot by geoff_heal (CC BY 2.0)

Shop for Birdorable Blue-headed Parrot gifts on Amazon, including this Birdorable Blue-headed Parrot Throw Pillow.

Tomorrow we'll add a small species of finch found in sub-Saharan Africa. They have a fiery red plumage and males sport white spots on their flanks. Do you know the species?

2022 Bonanza Bird #5

The Northern Emerald Toucanet: A Bright Green Wonder in the Cloud Forests of Central America

Birdorable Northern Emerald Toucanet

The Northern Emerald Toucanet, a small species of toucan, is the latest addition to our Birdorable collection. This charming bird is a vibrant splash of color in the mountain forests where it resides, stretching across parts of Mexico and Central America.

Despite their small stature, Northern Emerald Toucanets are easily identifiable thanks to their striking appearance. Both males and females share a similar look, characterized by a vivid green body plumage that beautifully blends with their lush forest habitat. Adding to their distinctive appearance is their relatively large bill, a beautiful combination of yellow and black, which is not only a visual highlight but also an essential tool for their diet and lifestyle.

These toucans are known for their versatility in feeding. They use their uniquely shaped bills to pluck and eat a variety of fruits, which forms a major part of their diet. However, they are not strict vegetarians; their diet also includes insects, small reptiles, and bird eggs, making them opportunistic feeders.

The Northern Emerald Toucanet's habitat in mountain forests is crucial for their survival, as it provides both food and shelter. These birds are often found in higher altitude regions, where they thrive in the cooler, moist environments of the cloud forests.

Northern Emerald Toucanets by Ryan Mandelbaum (CC BY 2.0)

Find our Northern Emerald Toucanet on a variety of apparel and gift options on Amazon, including this Birdorable Northern Emerald Toucanet Pullover Hoodie.

Tomorrow's new Birdorable is a species in the Psittacidae family. It is named for the color of its head, and lives in the Amazon basin. Do you know the species?