24 Beautiful Beach Birds Commonly Found In Florida!

florida shore birds

Florida has long stretches of beaches that attract many different beach birds. These birds spend their time wading along the beach to hunt for food such as insects, small fish and mollusks.

We’ve done some research and identified the most common beach birds that you’re likely to see along the Florida coastline. While this list may not cover every single bird that you may come across, we’ve tried to cover as many different species as we could.

24 Species Of Beach Birds Commonly Found In Florida

We’ve identified 24 different species of birds that can be classified as beach birds. These birds can commonly be found along Florida’s many beaches. Here’s some interesting information about these different birds.

Species Scientific Name Height Weight Wingspan
Black-Bellied Plover Pluvialis squatarola 11.4 inches 9.7 ounces 23.6 inches
Black Necked Stilt Himantopus mexicanus 15.3 inches 6.2 ounces 29.7 inches
Black Skimmer Runchops niger 19.7 inches 12.9 ounces 45.3 inches
Brown Pelican Pelecanus occidentalis 53.9 inches 176.4 ounces 78.7 inches
Double-Crested Cormorant Nannopterum auritum 35.4 inches 88.2 ounces 48.4 inches
Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias 53.9 inches 88.2 ounces 79.1 inches
Great White Heron Ardea herodias occidentalis 41 inches 3.3 pounds 67 inches
Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus roseus 5 feet 8.8 pounds 5.5 feet
Herring Gull Larus argentatus 26 inches 44.1 ounces 57.5 inches
White Ibis Eudocimus albus 26.8 inches 37 ounces 38 inches
Laughing Gulls Leucophaeus atricilla 18.1 inches 13.1 ounces 47.2 inches
Little Blue Heron Egretta caerulea 29.1 inches 14.5 ounces 41.3 inches
Long-Billed Dowitcher Limnodromus scolopaceus 11.4 inches 4.6 ounces 19.3 inches
American Oystercatcher Haematopus palliatus 17.3 inches 24.7 ounces 35 inches
Reddish Egret Egretta rufescens 31.5 inches 30 ounces 46.5 inches
Ring Billed Gull Larus delawarensis 21.3 inches 24.7 ounces 46.1 inches
Roseate Spoonbill Platalea ajaja 33.9 inches 63.5 ounces 51.2 inches
Royal Tern Thalasseus maximus 19.7 inches 15.2 ounces 43.3 inches
Sanderling Calidris alba 7.9 inches 3.5 ounces 13.8 inches
Short-Billed Dowitcher Limnodromus griseus 11.4 inches 4.2 ounces 22 inches
Snowy Egret Egretta thula 26 inches 13.1 ounces 39.4 inches
Spotted Sandpiper Actitis macularius 7.9 inches 1.8 ounces 15.8 inches
Tricolored Heron Egretta tricolor 27.6 inches 14.6 ounces 37.4 inches
Willet Tringa semipalmata 16.1 inches 11.6 ounces 27.6 inches

1. Black-Bellied Plover

The black-bellied plover is an attractive wading bird with both black and white feathers. It has a black face and belly as well as a black bill. The top of the head and back nape of the neck has white feathers and the upperside of the wings are checkered with both black and white feathers.

2. Black Necked Stilt

This lovely shore bird has the cutest face and really long legs. These birds have black feathers on their backs, necks and top of the head and white feathers underneath. They also have a white patch just above the eye and long, pink legs.

3. Black Skimmer

The black skimmer has impressively large wings with a wingspan of around 45 inches. It has mostly black feathers when viewed from above with white feathers on its face continuing down the neck and onto the belly. These birds also have a distinctive bill that is red and then black on the tip. Their legs are orange-red in color.

4. Brown Pelican

The brown pelican is both elegant and comical. These huge birds have mostly grayish-brown feathers but their heads are yellow and they have white feathers on their necks. During breeding, the feathers around the sides and back of the neck turn a dark reddish-brown color. Seeing a flock of these sunning themselves along the beach is truly a magnificent sight.

5. Double-Crested Cormorant

It’s hard to miss the splendor of a cormorant sunning itself on a rock with its wings outstretched. Double-crested cormorants have mainly brown-black feathers but they have a small patch of orange skin on their face. Apart from spotting these birds on the beach, you can also see them around large inland lakes.

6. Great Blue Heron

Great blue herons are large shore birds that have glue-gray feathers all over. They also have a wide black stripe over each eye that culminates in a pair of long feathers that stick out from the crown. They have long necks and a long, yellow bill for catching fish.

7. Great White Heron

The great white heron is a color variation of the great blue heron. Its feathers are all white and it also has the same long, yellow bill and long gray legs. It’s very similar in appearance to the great egret.

8. Greater Flamingo

Although not native to the United States, the greater flamingo has been spotted numerous times along the Florida coast, especially in the Everglades. These stunning large birds are pinky-orange in color with large curved beaks that are orange and black on the tip.

9. Herring Gull

Herring gulls can be identified by their gray back feathers and white heads, necks and bellies. They also have black wingtips. You’ll find these birds everywhere along the coast as they are great scavengers.

10. White Ibis

The white ibis can be distinguished by it snowy white feathers, red face and long red bill that is black-tipped. It also has long dark red legs and black-tipped wings. These birds also have amazingly blue eyes.

11. Laughing Gulls

The laughing gull is quite a pretty bird with its light gray back feathers, snowy white neck, chest and belly and almost black head. These birds also have distinctive white arcs around their eyes. Their bills are dark red and their legs are reddish-black.

12. Little Blue Heron

This diminutive heron has dark gray feathers all over. However, when you get closer, you’ll notice that the feathers on their heads, necks and chest are a purplish-maroon color. This makes their yellow eyes really stand out.

13. Long-Billed Dowitcher

This cute little shore bird is no larger than a robin. It has brightly colored feathers that are black, gold and brown. Their chest and belly feathers are mostly a golden brown with dark scallops. These birds have a long bill that is mostly black.

14. American Oystercatcher

The most striking thing about the american oystercatcher is its bright orange bill and yellow eye that is ringed with red. The head is all black and it has brown feathers on its back with a white chest and belly.

15. Reddish Egret

This long-legged wading bird has blue-gray feathers on its back and cinnamon colored feathers on its head, neck and chest. The bill is pink at the base and black on the tip. The longish legs are cobalt blue.

16. Ring Billed Gull

The first thing you’ll notice about this bird is the black ring around its yellow bill. The gull’s back and upper wing feathers are light-gray but it has white feathers on its head, body and tail. The wingtips are black and spotted with white.

17. Roseate Spoonbill

This shore bird has the prettiest pink feathers that you’ll ever see. The back and wing feathers are pale pink with a darker pink on the shoulders. Their neck feathers are white and they have yellowish-green feathers on their head. These birds also have bright red eyes.

18. Royal Tern

These birds have pale gray feathers on their backs and the top of their wings. They also have partially white faces, a white neck and also a white belly. The top of their head and top part of their face is black. Plus, they have a longish, pointed orange bill.

19. Sanderling

Sanderlings are small shore birds that have interesting feather colourings on their back and head that include brown, white and black colors. Their undersides are all white and they have a black bill and black legs.

20. Short-Billed Dowitcher

These birds are speckled in brown, black and gold all over. They also have quite a long bill that is dark gray in color. You’ll see them most often during rising and falling tides as they forage in the mudflats.

21. Snowy Egret

Snowy egrets are pure white all over. They have a yellow patch around their eyes and on the base of their bill and a long, black bill. Their legs are black but they have bright yellow feet.

22. Spotted Sandpiper

This is another tiny shore bird about the size of a robin. It features tan feathers on its back and head with a white chest and belly with bold dark spots. However, in winter, the belly and chest is just plain white without the spots.

23. Tricolored Heron

The tricolored heron has feathers that are a mixture of blue-gray, lavender and white. These birds also have a white belly. Plus, they have a yellow patch around their black eyes.

24. Willet

The willet is a speckled bird in colors of brown, black and white. When in flight, you’ll notice a black and white stripe along each of its wings. The legs on this bird are a bluish-gray and the bill has a black tip.

Final Thoughts

There are many different types of shore birds that can be found along the Florida coastline. These come in all shapes and sizes and some are quite colorful.

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