Birds That Start With O




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Over the vast orchestration of avian voices, those ornate birds ordained with the letter ‘O’ offer an ode to the wonders of the wild. From oceanic expanses to overgrown oases, these opulent oracles oscillate with originality and opulence.

Orbit with us on this odyssey, as we unearth the ornithological gems that the letter ‘O’ overlays upon our world.

Contents show

List of Birds Starting with O

  1. Oak Titmouse
  2. Olive Sparrow
  3. Olive-sided Flycatcher
  4. Olive Warbler
  5. Olive-backed Pipit (a rare visitor)
  6. Orange-crowned Warbler
  7. Orchard Oriole
  8. Osprey
  9. Ovenbird
  10. Oystercatcher

Orchard Oriole

The Orchard Oriole (Icterus spurius) is a small but vibrant bird with a unique appearance. The adult male has a deep black head, back, wings, and tail, which contrasts beautifully with its bright orange underparts. Its beak is slender and slightly curved, allowing it to extract nectar from flowers and consume small insects. Female Orchard Orioles, on the other hand, have a more subdued appearance, with olive-green upperparts and yellowish-orange underparts. Both males and females have dark eyes and pointed bills, making them easily identifiable.

Habitat and Distribution

These charming birds can be found across a wide range of habitats, including orchards, deciduous forests, parks, and suburban areas throughout North and Central America. During the breeding season, Orchard Orioles prefer open woodlands or areas with scattered trees and shrubs, providing them with a suitable environment to build their intricate cup-shaped nests.

Diet and Feeding Habits

Orchard Orioles have a diverse diet that includes both insects and nectar. They are known to feed on various insects, such as beetles, grasshoppers, caterpillars, and spiders, as well as small fruits and berries. They are particularly fond of consuming nectar from flowers, using their specialized brush-like tongues to drink the sweet liquid. Their feeding habits make them valuable pollinators, as they transfer pollen from one flower to another while searching for nectar.

Breeding and Behavior

During the breeding season, male Orchard Orioles showcase their striking plumage and melodic songs to attract females. They build their nests on the outer branches of trees, using materials such as grass, plant fibers, and even spider silk. Females lay three to five eggs, which they incubate for about two weeks. Once the eggs hatch, both parents work together to feed and care for the chicks. These Orioles are migratory birds, spending their winters in Central and South America before returning to their breeding grounds in North America during the warmer months.


Description and Characteristics

The Ovenbird (Seiurus aurocapilla) is a small, sparrow-sized bird that belongs to the wood-warbler family. It is known for its distinct appearance, with a bold black and orange striped crown on its head and heavily streaked brown upperparts. Its underparts are pale and its eyes have a unique reddish-brown hue. Ovenbirds have a stout beak, perfect for foraging on the forest floor. Despite their small size, they possess an exquisite song that echoes through the woods.

Habitat and Distribution

Ovenbirds inhabit a range of forested habitats, including deciduous and mixed forests, as well as dense shrubbery and the understory of coniferous forests. They can be found throughout North and Central America, including parts of Canada, the United States, and Central America. These birds have adapted to living in diverse environments, from lowland forests to mountainous regions, as long as there is sufficient understory vegetation for protection and nesting.

Diet and Feeding Habits

Primarily insectivorous, Ovenbirds feed on a variety of insects, including beetles, ants, caterpillars, spiders, and small worms. They forage on the ground, using their sturdy beak to flip leaves and debris in search of their prey. These birds are also known to consume berries and fruit when insects may be scarce. Additionally, they have been observed to occasionally engage in anting behavior, where they rub ants on their feathers to benefit from the chemicals secreted by the ants.

Breeding and Behavior

Ovenbirds are renowned for their unique nest-building technique, which resembles an old-fashioned outdoor clay oven, hence their name. The nest is built on the ground, using leaves, twigs, and grass, and has a small side entrance. Often well-hidden and camouflaged, the nest provides protection for the eggs and chicks. Females typically lay four to six eggs, which they incubate for around two weeks. Once hatched, both parents actively care for the young by feeding them insects until they are ready to fledge. Ovenbirds are migratory birds, spending their winters in Central and South America and returning to their breeding grounds in North America during the spring and summer months.


Description and Characteristics

The Osprey (Pandion haliaetus), also known as the fish hawk, is a striking bird of prey with unique adaptations for hunting fish. It has a large wingspan, reaching up to six feet, and a white underbelly with dark brown upperparts. Its head is distinctively marked with a white crown and a dark eye-stripe. Ospreys have sharp, curved talons and reversible outer toes, allowing them to grasp fish more effectively. These powerful birds exhibit exceptional aerial agility, often performing impressive dives to catch their prey.

Habitat and Distribution

Ospreys are found worldwide, with various subspecies inhabiting different regions. They are commonly seen near bodies of water, such as lakes, rivers, and coastal areas, where they can easily spot fish. Ospreys prefer nesting near water bodies with ample fish populations to sustain their diet. They build their nests on elevated structures, including treetops, cliffs, and man-made platforms, to provide a clear vantage point for hunting.

Diet and Feeding Habits

As piscivorous birds, Ospreys predominantly feed on fish, which make up 99% of their diet. They have adapted several hunting techniques, including hovering in mid-air before plunging into the water to snatch fish with their talons. Once caught, Ospreys position the fish headfirst to reduce wind resistance during flight, allowing for efficient transportation back to their nests. This behavior also prevents the fish’s scales from catching on the Osprey’s feathers. A single Osprey can consume up to six pounds of fish per day.

Breeding and Behavior

Ospreys form long-term monogamous pairs, with the male performing elaborate courtship displays to attract a mate. They nest near water bodies, often reusing the same nest year after year, gradually expanding and reinforcing it. Females typically lay two to four eggs, which are incubated for approximately five weeks. Both parents take turns incubating the eggs and feeding the chicks. The young Ospreys fledge after eight to ten weeks and gradually learn to fish from their parents. Ospreys typically migrate long distances to reach their wintering grounds, often traveling thousands of miles to tropical regions with abundant food resources.

Ocellated Turkey

Description and Characteristics

The Ocellated Turkey (Meleagris ocellata) is a stunning bird known for its vibrant plumage and unique characteristics. Unlike its more familiar relative, the wild turkey, the Ocellated Turkey has brilliant iridescent feathers that reflect various hues, including copper, emerald, and gold. Its body is adorned with bold and colorful patterns, including iridescent feathers on the tail coverts resembling large eyespots, or ocelli. The males are larger and more flamboyant than the females, with prominent spurs on their legs.

Habitat and Distribution

The Ocellated Turkey is native to the forests of the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, Belize, and parts of Guatemala. It thrives in dense, tropical forests with a mix of large trees and understory vegetation. These turkeys prefer areas with access to water sources, as they need to drink daily. Ocellated Turkeys spend the majority of their time on the forest floor but roost in trees at night for protection from predators.

Diet and Feeding Habits

Ocellated Turkeys have an omnivorous diet. They primarily feed on plant matter, such as fruits, seeds, leaves, and flowers. Insects, small reptiles, and amphibians also form part of their diet. These turkeys forage on the forest floor, scratching through leaf litter to uncover edible items. Their strong beaks and powerful neck muscles allow them to dig for food efficiently.

Breeding and Behavior

Ocellated Turkeys are polygamous, with males performing elaborate courtship displays to attract multiple females. The males display their impressive plumage, fan their tails, and emit a variety of calls to signal their availability to females. Mating typically occurs between March and May. Females lay a clutch of eight to 15 eggs, often in ground-level nests hidden in dense vegetation. Incubation lasts about 26 to 28 days, with the female solely responsible for protecting and incubating the eggs. Ocellated Turkeys are not migratory, with their unique habitat in the Yucatan Peninsula providing a suitable year-round environment.

Olive Tanager

Description and Characteristics

The Olive Tanager (Hemithraupis guira) is a small, colorful bird found primarily in South America. It is known for its prominent olive-colored plumage, with a brighter yellow-green hue on its underparts. The male and female Olive Tanagers have similar appearances, making it challenging to distinguish between the sexes. These tanagers have short, rounded wings and strong beaks suited for their preferred diet.

Habitat and Distribution

Olive Tanagers are native to the tropical forests of South America, including the Amazon Basin and the Andes Mountains. They inhabit the dense understory of the forests, favoring areas filled with dense vegetation, vines, and shrubs. Due to their preference for inaccessible habitats, Olive Tanagers can be challenging to spot and observe in the wild.

Diet and Feeding Habits

These tanagers have a frugivorous diet, relying primarily on fruits and berries. They contribute to seed dispersal in their habitats as they consume fruits and excrete the seeds elsewhere. Olive Tanagers also supplement their diet with insects, including small beetles and caterpillars. They mostly forage high in the trees, using their beaks to pluck fruits and search for insects in the foliage.

Breeding and Behavior

Olive Tanagers are monogamous birds, forming pairs during the breeding season. They build compact cup-shaped nests, woven with plant fibers and spider silk, usually placed in the lower branches of trees or shrubs. Female Olive Tanagers lay two to three eggs, which they incubate for around two weeks. Both parents actively participate in feeding the chicks once they hatch, regurgitating fruit and insects to nourish them. These tanagers are resident species, staying in their preferred habitats throughout the year.

Oak Titmouse

Description and Characteristics

The Oak Titmouse (Baeolophus inornatus) is a small, lively bird known for its distinctive crest on the top of its head. It has a compact body with muted gray-brown feathers and a lighter gray belly. Oak Titmice are often seen in family groups, moving quickly through the trees in search of food. Their lively chattering and energetic flight patterns make them a joy to watch.

Habitat and Distribution

These titmice are native to western North America, primarily found in woodland areas dominated by oak trees, hence their name. Oak Titmice favor mature oak woodlands, where they can forage for insects and build their nests in tree cavities. They can also adapt to suburban areas with suitable oak tree habitats, making them regular visitors to backyard bird feeders.

Diet and Feeding Habits

The Oak Titmouse’s diet consists mainly of insects, including beetles, caterpillars, spiders, and ants. They use their slender, pointed beaks to probe bark crevices and leaf clusters in search of hidden prey. Additionally, they consume various seeds and nuts, including acorns, pine nuts, and sunflower seeds. Oak Titmice are adept at caching surplus food in tree crevices, allowing them to have a ready food supply during leaner times.

Breeding and Behavior

Oak Titmice are monogamous birds that form strong pair bonds. They build their nests in tree cavities, often using old woodpecker holes or natural hollows. Both parents take part in excavating and lining the nest, using materials such as bark strips, moss, and feathers. Females lay a clutch of four to seven eggs, which they incubate for approximately two weeks. Both parents share the responsibility of feeding and caring for the nestlings until they are ready to fledge, usually after three weeks. Oak Titmice are resident birds, staying in their preferred habitats year-round.

Orange-bellied Parrot

Description and Characteristics

The Orange-bellied Parrot (Neophema chrysogaster) is a critically endangered species known for its vibrant plumage and striking colors. The adult male parrots have bright green feathers on their upperparts, contrasting beautifully with their orange underparts and blue rump. Females have a similar plumage pattern but with less vibrant colors. These parrots have a small, stocky build and a relatively short, rounded tail.

Habitat and Distribution

The Orange-bellied Parrot is native to southern Australia, specifically Tasmania and the mainland’s southwest coast. They inhabit diverse habitats near coastal heaths, button grass plains, eucalyptus forests, and salt marshes. These parrots rely on a combination of habitat types for nesting, roosting, and foraging, making them highly dependent on suitable conservation efforts to protect their fragile population.

Diet and Feeding Habits

Orange-bellied Parrots primarily feed on the seeds of various plant species, including those of native grasses, sedges, and herbs. They use their strong beaks to crack open the tough seed coats. These parrots also consume small amounts of fruit, nectar, and flowers, particularly during the breeding season. Nectar-rich coastal banksias and correas are popular food sources for these colorful birds.

Breeding and Behavior

Orange-bellied Parrots are migratory birds, undertaking an incredible journey between their breeding grounds in southwest Tasmania and their wintering sites on the mainland of Australia. During the breeding season, males court females with vibrant displays, including head-bobbing, wing-flapping, and vocalizations. Females lay around three to six eggs in tree hollows, often lining the nest with eucalyptus leaves. Both parents share the responsibility of incubating the eggs and caring for the chicks. Unfortunately, the Orange-bellied Parrot is teetering on the brink of extinction, with conservation efforts focused on protecting their remaining habitats and implementing captive breeding programs.

Olive-backed Sunbird

Description and Characteristics

The Olive-backed Sunbird (Cinnyris jugularis) is a small, colorful bird found throughout Southeast Asia and parts of Australia. It is named after its olive-green upperparts, with the male possessing a vibrant metallic blue-black head and neck during the breeding season. The female has a more modest olive-brown head. Both sexes have a thin, downward-curving beak, perfectly designed for their nectar-feeding lifestyle.

Habitat and Distribution

These sunbirds are found in a variety of habitats, including tropical rainforests, mangrove forests, gardens, and coastal areas. They are commonly seen in parks and gardens in urban areas, as they are adaptable to human-altered environments. Olive-backed Sunbirds are native to countries such as India, China, Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia, as well as parts of Australia.

Diet and Feeding Habits

Olive-backed Sunbirds have a specialized diet primarily consisting of nectar from flowering plants. They use their long, brush-like tongues to extract nectar from tubular flowers, such as those of hibiscus, coral honeysuckle, and eucalyptus. These sunbirds also supplement their diet with small insects and spiders that they find along with their nectar-gathering expeditions. They play an essential role in pollination, transferring pollen from one flower to another.

Breeding and Behavior

During the breeding season, male Olive-backed Sunbirds engage in courtship displays to attract females. They sing complex songs and perform elaborate flights to showcase their bright plumage. The female constructs a delicate, cup-shaped nest using materials such as plant fibers and spider webs, often hanging the nest from tree branches or other elevated structures. She lays two or three eggs, which she incubates for about two weeks. Both parents contribute to feeding and caring for the chicks until they fledge. Olive-backed Sunbirds are non-migratory birds, staying in their preferred habitats throughout the year.

Oriental Stork

Description and Characteristics

The Oriental Stork (Ciconia boyciana) is a large, majestic bird known for its elegant appearance and distinctive bill. It has long, white feathers covering its body, with black flight feathers and black primary feathers. The stork’s most noteworthy feature is its long, vibrant red bill, which is thick and slightly curved. Oriental Storks have a wingspan of up to seven feet, making them impressive in flight.

Habitat and Distribution

Oriental Storks are primarily found in eastern Asia, including countries such as China, Russia, and Korea. They inhabit wetland areas, including flooded grasslands, marshes, and the banks of rivers and lakes. These storks prefer habitats with ample fish populations, as they rely on fish as their primary food source.

Diet and Feeding Habits

As piscivorous birds, Oriental Storks feed primarily on fish. They wade through shallow water, using their sharp bills to spear fish or catch them with a quick, snapping motion. These storks are patient hunters, standing silently in the water until an opportunity presents itself. Their diet also includes frogs, small reptiles, and large insects. Oriental Storks play an essential role in regulating fish populations in their ecosystems.

Breeding and Behavior

Oriental Storks form monogamous pair bonds, with pairs returning to the same nesting site year after year. They construct large nests made from sticks and branches, often in tall trees or on artificial platforms. Females lay two to six eggs, which are incubated by both parents for approximately a month. Once hatched, the chicks are fed regurgitated food by both parents until they are ready to fledge. Oriental Storks are migratory birds, traveling long distances to reach their wintering grounds in Southeast Asia.

Other Birds Starting with O

Oriole Warbler

The Oriole Warbler is a small New World warbler found primarily in Central and South America. It has a vibrant yellow plumage on its underparts, with olive-green upperparts. Its song is melodic and often heard high in the canopy of its forested habitat.

Old World Flycatcher

Old World Flycatchers are small insectivorous birds found in Europe, Africa, and Asia. They feed on insects caught mid-air while perched on tree branches or other suitable perches. They often have subtle plumage and are known for their distinctive hunting behavior.

Olive-green Woodpecker

The Olive-green Woodpecker is a medium-sized woodpecker found in forested habitats across parts of Asia. It has an olive-green back, a whitish underbelly, and a bold black and white pattern on its face. These woodpeckers use their strong bills for excavating tree trunks in search of insects.

Owl Finch

The Owl Finch is a small finch native to Australia. It is known for its distinctive round facial disc, resembling that of an owl. These finches have a varied diet, feeding on seeds, insects, and nectar. They are often kept as pets due to their unique appearance.

Ornate Hawk-Eagle

The Ornate Hawk-Eagle is a beautiful raptor found in tropical forests across Central and South America. It has a dark and white plumage pattern, with striking feather crests on its head. These powerful birds hunt agile prey, including small mammals, birds, and reptiles.

Ochre-rumped Antbird

The Ochre-rumped Antbird is a medium-sized bird found in the Amazon rainforest. It has a grayish-brown plumage with a distinctive ochre-colored rump. These antbirds are known for their insectivorous diet and their role in following ant swarms to feed on the insects stirred up by them.

Orange-breasted Bunting

The Orange-breasted Bunting is a small, vibrantly colored bird found in Central America and Mexico. Males have bright orange underparts, contrasting with their black upperparts. These buntings prefer open habitats, such as grasslands and agricultural areas.

Olive Pigeon

The Olive Pigeon is a large pigeon species found in parts of Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent. It has a predominantly olive-colored plumage, with a gray head and a distinctive white patch on its neck. These pigeons inhabit tropical rainforests, where they feed on fruits, seeds, and flowers.

Officer’s Chaja

The Officer’s Chaja, also known as the Southern Screamer, is a unique bird found in South America. It has a dark plumage, a long neck, and a distinctive crest. These birds are known for their loud, trumpeting calls, often heard at dawn and dusk.

Orchard Chat

The Orchard Chat is a small passerine bird found in parts of sub-Saharan Africa. It has a plain brown plumage, often with a reddish-brown rump. These chats inhabit woodland areas and are known for their melodious songs.

Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher

The Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher is a colorful bird found in parts of Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent. It has a bright blue and orange plumage, making it a sought-after species among birdwatchers. These kingfishers inhabit forested areas near water bodies, where they feed on small fish, crustaceans, and insects.

Olive-crowned Crescentchest

The Olive-crowned Crescentchest is a small bird found in South America, primarily in the Amazon rainforest. It has an olive-colored plumage, with a distinctive crescent-shaped pattern on its head. These birds feed on insects and spiders, often foraging in the understory of the forest.

Old World Sparrow

Old World Sparrows are small, seed-eating birds found in Europe, Africa, and Asia. They exhibit a wide range of plumage variations, often adapting to urban environments and becoming familiar sights in cities. These sparrows are highly social and often form flocks.

Olive Sparrow

The Olive Sparrow is a small songbird found in parts of Mexico and Central America. It has an olive-colored plumage with a white eyebrow stripe and a reddish-brown tail. These sparrows inhabit dense shrubbery and thorny habitats, often staying hidden from view.

Orange-fronted Hanging Parrot

The Orange-fronted Hanging Parrot is a small parrot species native to Southeast Asia. It has a bright green plumage with an orange forehead and throat. These parrots hang upside down while feeding on fruit and nectar in the forest canopy.

Olive-crowned Yellowthroat

The Olive-crowned Yellowthroat is a small songbird found primarily in Central America and northern South America. It has a yellow underbelly, an olive-colored upper body, and a black mask across its eyes. These warblers inhabit marshes and wetlands, often skulking through dense vegetation.

Oriental Cuckoo

The Oriental Cuckoo is a migratory bird found in Asia during the breeding season and wintering in parts of Southeast Asia and Indonesia. It has a grayish-brown plumage, with distinctive barring on its underparts. Oriental Cuckoos are known for their unique reproductive strategy, laying their eggs in the nests of other bird species.

Olive-cheeked Hornbill

The Olive-cheeked Hornbill is a striking bird found in parts of Southeast Asia, including Myanmar and Thailand. It has a predominantly black plumage with a large yellow casque on its bill. These hornbills inhabit evergreen forests and feed on fruits, insects, and small animals.

Olive-colored Flycatcher

The Olive-colored Flycatcher is a small passerine bird found in parts of Central and South America. It has a predominantly olive-colored plumage, with a pale breast and a slightly hooked beak. These flycatchers feed on insects, which they catch on the wing or by sallying from perches.

Olive-crowned Flowerpecker

The Olive-crowned Flowerpecker is a tiny bird found in tropical forests of Southeast Asia, including countries such as Indonesia and the Philippines. It has a predominantly green plumage, with a yellow throat and an olive crown. These flowerpeckers feed on nectar, fruit, and insects.

Orange-winged Amazon

The Orange-winged Amazon is a medium-sized parrot found in Central and South America. It has a predominantly green plumage, with a distinctive orange patch on its secondary flight feathers. These parrots are known for their talking ability and are popular pets among avian enthusiasts.

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