Birds are unique creatures and kids can swing either way in their feelings about birds. Some love ’em and others are terrified of them. If your kids are into birds, then they’ll adore these picture books about birds! I love that all these books have striking illustrations and delve into everything from bird shows to nest building and the general life of birds.
31 Delightful Picture Books About Birds
Here are 31 awesome picture books about birds:
Have You Heard the Nesting Bird?
Published: March 18, 2014
Woodpecker calls from a tree, “cuk-cuk-cuk.” Starling sings, “whistle-ee-wee.” But have you heard the nesting bird?
In this book, we hear all the different bird calls in counterpoint to the pervasive quiet of a mama bird waiting for her eggs to hatch. Fun and informative back matter takes the shape of an interview so that readers learn more right from the bird’s bill. Ken Pak’s lively illustrations, paired with Rita Gray’s words, render a visual and sonorous picture book to be enjoyed by young naturalists.
The Nest the Wren Built
Published: March 10, 2020
This is the bark, snippets of twine,
spidery rootlets, and needles of pine
that shape the nest that Wren built.
In the rhyming style of “The House That Jack Built,” this poem about the care and specificity that Carolina wrens put into building a nest is at once tender and true to life. Papa and Mama Wren gather treasures of the forest, from soft moss for a lining to snakeskin for warding off predators. Randi Sonenshine’s lilting stanzas, woven with accurate and unexpected details about Carolina wrens, and Anne Hunter’s gentle, inviting illustrations reveal the mysterious lives of these birds and impart an appreciation for the wonder of the life cycles around us. Back matter includes a glossary and additional interesting facts about wrens.
Published: September 3, 2019
All the animals know not to mess with old Scarecrow. But when a small, scared crow falls from midair, Scarecrow does the strangest thing. . . .
Bestselling author Beth Ferry and the widely acclaimed Fan Brothers present this tender and affectionate tale that reminds us of the comforting power of friendship and the joy of helping others.
Published: March 3, 2020
In this black-and-white picture book highlighted with robin’s egg blue, the reader will follow two robins as they build a nest with twigs and grass. Then mother robin lays four beautiful blue eggs and will keep the eggs warm in the nest until they hatch into four baby robins.
The father robin protects the babies until they can fly on their own. The perils the babies encounter are many, including snakes and storms. The nest is always their safe place.
Nesting provides introductory biology and animal science concepts for very young children, and also makes a spectacular springtime gift.
Feathers: Not Just for Flying
Published: September 30, 2013
Young naturalists explore sixteen birds in this elegant introduction to the many, remarkable uses of feathers. A concise main text highlights how feathers are not just for flying. More curious readers are invited to dig deeper with informative sidebars that underscore how feathers of all shapes and sizes help birds with warming or cooling, protect them from the sun, help them swim, glide or even dig. With a range of common and exotic species readers will be engaged by both the new and the familiar. Beautiful and delicate watercolor illustrations showcase life-size feathers and compare them to everyday objects. With a scrapbook design, Feathers is part science journal, part read-along nonfiction, making it a wonderful resource for nature studies and a delight for the youngest bird lovers.
How to Find a Bird
Published: August 4, 2020
How do you find a bird? There are so many ways! Begin by watching. And listening. And staying quiet, so quiet you can hear your own heartbeat. Soon you’ll see that there are birds everywhere—up in the sky, down on the ground, sometimes even right in front of you just waiting to be discovered!
Young bird lovers will adore this lushly illustrated introduction to how to spot and observe our feathered friends. It features more than fifty different species, from the giant whooping crane to the tiny ruby-throated hummingbird, and so many in between, and a detailed author’s note provides even more information about birding for curious readers. This celebration of the wondrous variety, colors, and sounds of the avian world is sure to have children grabbing their binoculars and heading outside to explore.
The Beak Book
Published: January 5, 2021
Birds around the world have so many amazing kinds of beaks! There are short beaks and long beaks, straight beaks and curved beaks, flat beaks and even spoon-shaped beaks. But what do all of these beaks do?
Discover how beaks of different shapes and sizes are adapted to help birds sip nectar, make nests, battle for mates, and more!
Published: February 1, 2019
Search for hidden birds and count them, too, in this seek-and-find picture book with a satisfying surprise. Delicate artwork, a focus on counting, and an engaging treasure hunt will entice fans of Janell Cannon’s Stellaluna and Steve Light’s Have You Seen My Dragon?
There are treasures hiding in the trees! Can you find them? From the author of the acclaimed and bestselling Tap the Magic Tree, this stunning picture book merges basic math concepts with elements of a treasure hunt.
With different species of birds and other forest animals hiding in the trees and bushes, there is something new to discover on every page. Patience is rewarded as readers learn to count backward from ten, meet new birds, and learn about the diverse ecosystem of the forest. Beautiful watercolor-and-collage art, a playful counting text, and a search-and-find theme will inspire children and parents to return to Bird Watch again and again.And for curious young birders, a page of information about bird-watching and the different birds that appear in the book is included.
Published: September 17, 2019
It’s a big day up in the tree that Mama bird shares with her baby. Mama bird thinks Baby bird is finally ready to leave the nest and learn to fly so he can migrate south with the rest of their flock. But Baby bird isn’t so sure. Can’t his mother keep bringing him worms in their nest? Can’t he migrate in a hot air balloon instead? Or perhaps a car?
Published: March 2, 2021
Just like people, birds contribute to our beautiful world, made more vibrant by their diversity. Readers will marvel at the unique “clothes” worn by eighteen familiar and exotic birds in Susan Stockdale’s colorful book. With feathers both plain and fancy, spotted and striped, birds’ magnificent differences are celebrated in her stunning portraits and lyrical, rhyming text.
Future ornithologists and fashionistas will marvel at the book’s color and style, and an afterword provides more information about each species as well as an entertaining pattern matching game.
Bird Builds a Nest
Published: January 17, 2018
It’s time for Bird to build her nest! Follow her as she pulls a worm out of the ground, lifts some twigs that are just the right size, and pushes the twigs into place. Uh-oh! One of the twigs falls to the ground! But after a day of hard work, Bird’s nest is ready and waiting. Can you guess what it’s waiting for? Using simple, clear language and beautiful illustrations, this engaging story is the perfect introduction to physical forces for very young readers. A final spread with some simple questions promotes discussion with parents, teachers, or caregivers and encourages readers to think about the concepts introduced.
On Duck Pond
Published: April 11, 2017
ON BIRD HILL took readers on a surreal journey with a boy and his dog, as they stopped, looked, and noticed things along their path, ultimately discovering the miracle a hatching baby bird.ON DUCK POND continues their journey, this time in a new place―a serene pond, filled with birds, frogs, turtles, and other creatures going about their quiet business. Their intrusion stirs the pond into a cacophony of activity, reaching a climactic chaos before slowly settling back to a quiet equilibrium.
Published: June 14, 2022
Backyard birds—move over! Odd Birds introduces babies and toddlers to unusual bird species, including the magnificent frigatebird with a bright red throat pouch and the California condor—the largest flying birds in North America! Gentle rhyming verses provide the comforting repetition that little ones crave, even as their minds are opened to new and fascinating creatures from around the world. At the end of the book, readers will find photographs of each bird, along with more detailed factual information. The eight birds featured are the magnificent frigatebird, blue-footed booby, shoebill stork, ostrich, hoatzin, oilbird, California condor, and burrowing owl.
Published: February 1, 2014
From birth, to first flight, to new friend, the first year of a bird’s life is full of activity and wonder. Artist Jorey Hurley pairs vivid, crisp artwork with simple, minimal text—often just one word per spread—to create a breathtaking, peaceful chronicle of nature and life’s milestones.
Published: March 1, 2012
The young girl in this story may live in the city, but outside her window there’s a river full of mallard ducks! She hears them as soon as she wakes up, and on the way to school she sees them upside down bobbing for food. Interspersed with fun facts, her enthusiastic commentary about her feathered neighbors — what they look like, how they behave, where they nest, where they sleep — pairs swimmingly with cheerful watercolor illustrations.
Hooray for Birds!
Published: March 28, 2017
Birds of all feathers flock together in a fun, rhyme-filled offering by the creator of Maisy. From the rooster’s “cock-a-doodle-doo” at dawn to the owl’s nighttime “tuwit, tuwoo,” the cheeps and tweets of many bright and beautiful avian friends will have children eager to join in as honorary fledglings. This day in the life of birds will hold the attention of even the smallest bird-watchers, whether at storytime or just before settling into their cozy nests to sleep.
Published: October 1, 2019
A young girl and her mother participate as community scientists in the Christmas Bird Count. The girl is excited when Big Al, the leader of their team, asks her to record the tally this year. Using her most important tools―her eyes and ears―she eagerly identifies and counts the birds they observe on their assigned route around town. She and her team follow the rules, noting the time of day, the habitat, the birding ID techniques used for each sighting.
Finally, they meet up with the other teams in the area to combine their totals for a Christmas Bird Count party and share stories about their observations. Sidebars tally up the birds they observe and record. This book introduces young readers to birdwatching with simple explanations of birdwatching techniques and clear descriptions of bird habitats.
My Book of Birds
Published: April 12, 2016
Geraldo Valério is an artist who loves birds, from majestic Golden Eagles and Snowy Owls to brilliant cardinals and jays to the tiniest of hummingbirds. Here he presents his favorites, with beautiful collage illustrations and brief descriptions that highlight intriguing facts about each one.
Mama Built a Little Nest
Published: March 18, 2014
Mama built a little nest
inside a sturdy trunk.
She used her beak to tap-tap-tap
the perfect place to bunk.
There are so many different kinds of birds—and those birds build so many different kinds of nests to keep their babies cozy. With playful, bouncy rhyme, Jennifer Ward explores nests large and small, silky and cottony, muddy and twiggy—and all the birds that call them home!
Bat Loves the Night
Published: August 19, 2004
Night has fallen, and Bat awakens to find her evening meal. Follow her as she swoops into the shadows, shouting and flying, the echoes of her voice creating a sound picture of the world around her. When morning light creeps into the sky, Bat returns to the roost to feed her baby . . . and to rest until nighttime comes again. Bat loves the night!
Finding a Dove for Gramps
Published: November 1, 2018
A boy and his mom continue the family tradition of participating in the annual bird count. Since Gramps went South for the winter, the boy hopes to spot Gramps’s favorite bird for him―a dove! But with so many different birds in the nature preserve, will he be able to spot one? This heart-warming family story about nature celebrates a holiday census that was first started in 1900 and happens every year.
Published: March 12, 2019
Birds are like thoughts.
They come, stay awhile . . .
and then fly away.
Birds come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. They like to chat with one another as they fly high and low in the sky. Birds make music, with songs that are like the loving words of a friend, and we are lucky enough to enjoy those sweet melodies. But best of all, birds are capable of flying wherever they please — they just let their hearts guide them. And we can do that, too, if we use our imaginations.
One Dark Bird
Published: July 16, 2019
One dark bird is perched up high, with a view of the town and a taste of the sky. Then she’s joined by two more, then three, then four. Before long, there are hundreds of starlings dancing across the sky—and avoiding a hunting hawk with one of the most spectacular tricks in the animal kingdom. Then, when night comes, the starlings begin to depart, until finally there is just one dark bird perched way up high, with a view of the town and a taste of the sky.
Counting Birds: The Idea That Helped Save Our Feathered Friend
Published: October 2, 2018
What can you do to help endangered animals and make a positive change in our environment? Get counting! Counting Birds is a beautifully illustrated book that introduces kids to the idea of bird counts and bird watches. Along the way, they will learn about Frank Chapman, an ornithologist who wanted to see the end of the traditional Christmas bird hunt, an event in which people would shoot as many birds as possible on Christmas. Chapman, using his magazine Bird-Lore to promote the idea of counting birds, founded the first annual bird count.
More than a century after the first bird count, bird counting helps professional researchers collect data, share expertise, and spread valuable information to help all kinds of birds around the world, from condors to hawks to kestrels and more.
Is This Panama?: A Migration Story
Published: September 10, 2013
When Sammy, a young Wilson’s warbler, wakes up one frosty August morning near the Arctic Circle, he instinctively knows that it’s time to make his first migratory journey south to Panama. But there’s one problem — where’s Panama? All the other warblers having left without him, Sammy sets off on his journey by himself, stopping to ask the same question of each of the different animals that he meets along the way: “Is this Panama?”
A Bird is a Bird
Published: February 1, 2015
What is a bird? And how is it different from a mammal or a reptile?
Some birds are huge and some are tiny. Some birds are fantastically colorful and some are plain. But what do all birds share? Early nonfiction expert Lizzy Rockwell explains that birds have beaks, wings, and feathers, and hatch from eggs. Other animals might have some of these features in common, but only a bird has them all.
Only a bird is a bird!
Published: January 9, 2007
The sky is quiet.
The yard is quiet.
The creek is quietly gurgling.
Then…tat, tat, tat, tat, tat, tat, tat, tat, tat, tat! A red-capped woodpecker starts his rap for the day. Next comes nine soft coos from the mourning doves, followed by the chipping of a flurry of sparrows. And on go the birdsongs throughout the day.
Celebrate neighborhood birds in this poetic picture book, and count their sounds backward from ten to one, until all is quiet in the yard again.
A Round of Birds
Published: March 27, 2018
Sixteen fresh and funny poems welcome a new batch of robins to the world!
Jumble, jostle, rumble, squirm;
Dad has landed with a worm.
Game of tug-of-war begins–
Biggest bossy baby wins.
Mama’s a skillful architect, constructing a sturdy nest, while Dad’s a champion turf defender. And those hatchlings! Such fluffs of plump perfection!
Bird Talk: What Birds Are Saying and Why
Published: March 13, 2012
A gorgeously illustrated tribute to birds of all kinds and the fantastic, funny, fascinating things that they do.
Birds have lots of ways of communicating: They sing and talk, dance and drum, cuddle and fight. But what does all of the bird talk mean?
Filled with gorgeous illustrations, this fascinating picture book takes a look at the secret life of birds in a child-friendly format that is sure to appeal to readers of all ages – whether they’re die-hard bird-watchers or just curious about the creatures in their own backyards.
Harriet’s Ruffled Feathers: The Woman Who Saved Millions of Birds
Published: March 15, 2022
Harriet Lawrence Hemenway loved hats. She loved them with ribbons and flowers, embroidery and pearls. And feathers! What was better than a hat with grand, glorious feathers? But then Harriet discovered that millions of birds died so that she and her friends could soar at the height of style. A passion for fashion was one thing, but this was feather-brained!
So Harriet led the charge to take feathers out of fashion, getting laws passed that made it illegal to buy or sell wild bird feathers. In 1896, she and her fellow bird protectors founded the Massachusetts Audubon Society, which grew into a national organization that still protects birds today! Additional information about conservation can be found in the backmatter of this engaging picture book.
Words of the World: Birds
Published: May 4, 2021
Bird. Oiseau. Pájaro. In this delightful board book, explore words of the world and learn the names of a variety of colorful birds in the six most widely spoken languages.
Curious minds will love the playful, brightly colored collages and multilingual exploration of birds and their names from around the world.
This beautiful board book pairs gorgeous collages of eighteen types of birds with their names across the six most popular languages worldwide: English, Spanish, French, Hindi, Chinese (Mandarin), and Arabic, as well as the language of universal friendship, Esperanto.
This book is the perfect size for little hands, and children (and parents) will enjoy testing out each word and identifying similarities in sounds across languages as well as the names that stand out.
The Words of the World board book series encourages multilingual exploration and curiosity about our world among young readers. Each book promotes language learning through playful and sophisticated collages and even includes phonetic pronunciation for Hindi, Chinese, and Arabic.
Language is a powerful tool that binds us together across cultures, and developing our skills beyond a single language helps us to expand our ability to:
- Problem-solve and use critical-thinking skills
- Consider other people’s perspectives
- Become aware of our surroundings
A perfect gift to help spark curiosity, a love of learning, and language skills in young readers. Printed on FSC-certified paper with vegetable inks.
There they are: 31 picture books about birds! Which of these books have you read and loved? What did I miss?
What do you think? Leave a comment