Northern Cardinal – North Carolina State Bird
North Carolina is a great place to watch and feed birds. Birdbaths, misters and drippers are especially effective in attracting birds, including non seed-eating species. Species that might be expected at feeders include: American Goldfinch, Carolina Wren, Black-capped Chickadee, Blue Jay, Downy Woodpecker, Northern Cardinal and Mourning Dove. Each of these species is shown in the Nifty Fifty mini-guide.
On this page
The Nifty Fifty Birds of North Carolina
The Nifty Fifty is a mini-guide to the birds of North Carolina. It includes descriptions, images, video and songs of 50 of the most often observed birds of North Carolina.
Developing bird-friendly habitat in your yard is the best way to attract a greater variety of species and to support local and migrating species. Native plants provide food and cover, are more insect and disease resistant than non-native species, and may require less water. A list of bird-friendly native plants for North Carolina is available by following the link on the left.
The Eastern Bluebird is the only one of the 3 bluebird species regularly found in North Carolina.
The Eastern Bluebird has a pleasant, musical song and a similar easy-to-identify flight call. They are most often found in open woodlands, parks, fields, along golf courses and cemeteries. The can be found in suburban areas with adequate open space.
Bluebirds can be attracted to peanut butter mixes, suet and fruit. Raisins soaked in hot water to soften them are well received. The bluebird’s special favorite is mealworms.
The Eastern Bluebird begins nesting in North Carolina in early spring. One, two and sometimes three broods may be produced.
Visit the bluebird section for detailed information on feeding bluebirds or building your own bluebird house.
The Ruby-throated Hummingbird is the only species that regularly visits North Carolina. It nests in the state each year, before migrating south. In a remarkable journey for such a tiny bird, it migrates across the Gulf of Mexico twice each year.
Visit the hummingbird section for details on attracting hummingbirds as well as images of all regularly occurring North American hummingbirds.
Purple Martins arrive in North Carolina early each year, returning from their wintering grounds in South America. Detailed Purple Martin information is available in the Purple Martin section.
Purple Martin – male
North Carolina provides birders with a variety of exciting birding locations.
The birding section of this site has tips on birding locations and bird identification. The state-based birding information section provides additional birding related information.
North Carolina Resource Information
Audubon Society of Forsyth County
PO Box 15111
Winston Salem, NC 27103
Cape Fear Audubon Society
PO Box 414
Wilmington, NC 28402
Elisha Mitchell Audubon Society
PO Box 18711
Asheville, NC 28814
High Country Audubon Society
P.O. Box 3746
Boone, NC 28607
Highlands Plateau Audubon Society
PO Box 833
Highlands, NC 28741
Mecklenburg Audubon Society
PO Box 221093
Charlotte, NC 28222
New Hope Audubon Society
PO Box 2693
Chapel Hill, NC 27515
T. Gilbert Pearson Audubon Society
PO Box 10157
Greensboro, NC 27410
Wake Audubon Society
PO Box 12452
Raleigh, NC 27605
If you have suggestions for additional resources for watching or feeding birds in Alabama, please submit them using this form. The resource does not need to be a particular location.
North Carolina Birding Festivals
Wings Over Water Festival
Annually in November
North Carolina’s Outer Banks , Manteo, North Carolina
A Celebration of Wildlife & Wildlands in Eastern North Carolina, Wings Over Water is the premier birding and nature festival on the Outer Banks. The festival offers 100 birding, paddling, and natural history excursions for enthusiasts of all shapes and sizes, abilities and affinities. There’s never a better time to bird eastern North Carolina! Exploring a blackwater swamp in the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge. Sliding into a kayak or canoe to explore a salt marsh environment. Wade in search of Clapper Rails, marsh sparrows and wrens at Oregon Inlet. Heading for the blue waters of the Gulf Stream off Cape Hatteras to search for pelagic birds. Experiencing a Red Wolf Howling where the nearly extinct animal is now fighting its way back.