25 Small Yellow Birds You Should Know

Updated: Nov. 03, 2022

Did you spot a small yellow bird in the trees? Look at these photos of yellow birds found across North America to help you identify what species you saw!

Bnbbyc18 Sara Wunderlich
Courtesy Sara Wunderlich

American Goldfinch

“I photographed this male American goldfinch in my backyard in Foley, Minnesota. Goldfinches are the small yellow bird that made me fall in love with birdwatching!” says Sara Wunderlich. Here’s how to attract more goldfinches to your backyard.

yellow warbler
Courtesy Michelle Nyss

Yellow Warbler

“One of the things I love about Wisconsin is the variety of birds that come here during spring migration. Warblers are the a delight to see. These tiny little bright yellow warblers are beautiful and I could never get enough pictures of them,” says Michelle Nyss.

Yellow warbler vs goldfinch: Here’s how to tell the difference.

prothonotary warbler
Courtesy Trisha Snider

Prothonotary Warbler

“It was a very nice surprise to see a prothonotary warbler this spring in Ontario. Normally I have to travel a ways to see this small yellow bird. This is one of my favorite warblers and a record to see in my area,” says Trisha Snider. Check out more spring warblers you should know.

summer tanager
Courtesy William Palmer

Female Summer Tanager

“The female summer tanager visits our backyard for mealworms,” writes William Palmer. The female is a solid small yellow bird, in contrast to the red male. Discover 8 surprising facts about tanagers.

western tanager
Courtesy Sylvia Hooper

Western Tanager

“I took this photo of a western tanager in spring 2020. I had just purchased the birdbath and I am so glad I did! It captured the small yellow bird’s reflection perfectly. What a cutie!” says Sylvia Hooper. Check out 9 small red bird species you might see.

yellow headed blackbird
Courtesy Albert Myran

Yellow-Headed Blackbird

” I captured this shot of a yellow-headed blackbird in the reeds along the shore of Patterson Lake near Dickinson, North Dakota. I love to hear these yellow and black birds sing and see how the yellow head really shows up when I’m looking for them,” says Albert Myran. These pictures will change the way you look at black birds.

Yellow-throated Vireo
Larry Keller, Lititz Pa./Getty Images

Yellow-Throated Vireo

The bright yellow eye ring, throat, and breast of this vireo are distinctive. Its wings are dark gray, with two bold, white wing bars. Immature birds look similar to the adults, but are paler yellow.

Courtesy Evelyn Johnson


“During summer, my husband and I visited Retzer Nature Center in Waukesha, Wisconsin. While walking on the beautiful hiking trails, an abundance of birds were singing, including this male dickcissel adorning this yellow flower,” says Evelyn Johnson. Learn about the top songbirds in America.

evening grosbeaks on a platform feeder
Courtesy Nancy Tully

Evening Grosbeak

You can identify an evening grosbeak by its big greenish white beak, gray and gold feathers, and black-and-white wing pattern. Discover 5 grosbeaks backyard birders should know.

common yellowthroat
Courtesy Janat Montag

Common Yellowthroat

“The bird of paradise plants were in full bloom while we were vacationing in San Diego in early December. While photographing hummingbirds that were taking advantage of the blooms, I noticed common yellowthroats also drinking the nectar,” says Janat Montag.

wilson's warbler
Courtesy Dennis Rashe

Wilson’s Warbler

“This was an exciting moment as I managed to capture a Wilson’s warbler trying to bring home a meal to its offspring. There were four mouths to feed!” says Dennis Rashe.

Bnbugc Trishoverton

Palm Warbler

“For the last two years, palm warblers have landed in the same Norway spruces about 15 feet from my patio. It’s so lucky because I had never seen this small yellow bird before!” says Trish Overton.

magnolia warbler
Courtesy Nancy Tully

Magnolia Warbler

Nancy Tully shared this photo of a gorgeous magnolia warbler. This small bird has a vibrant yellow breast with a black “necklace” on its throat. Psst—we have warbler migration tips for every type of birder.

nashville warbler
Courtesy Andy Raupp

Nashville Warbler

“I saw. this acrobatic Nashville warbler hanging on my backyard cherry tree in spring. It’s special to me because I live in the suburbs and don’t often see migrating warblers in my yard,” says Andy Raupp of Elgin, Illinois.

pine warbler
Courtesy Mark Benson

Pine Warbler

“I took this photo of a pine warbler in my backyard in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. Pine warblers come to our suet feeder for just a few days every spring. After about 45 minutes of sitting perfectly still, I captured this gorgeous photo,” says Mark Benson.

Hooded warbler
Courtesy Teresa McClung

Hooded Warbler

“Every spring my husband and I make a trip to Kanawha State Forest near Charleston, West Virginia, to look for migrating warblers. This year in April we took our usual trip and were lucky enough see and hear this beautiful male hooded warbler singing and moving about in a patch of briars nearby. This small yellow bird paused long enough for me to take several photos before moving on,” says Teresa McClung. Check out 10 birds that look like orioles.

verdin, desert birds
Courtesy Daniella Meyer


“My little verdin gives me a break from the quail and doves in my Arizona backyard bird watching! He shows up in the spring when my palo verdes are in yellow bloom and is an active and vocal bird,” says Daniella Meyer. Discover the desert birds of the Southwest.

townsend warbler
Courtesy Frank Lussier

Townsend Warbler

“I find the Townsend warbler to be an interesting bird. The yellow and black stripes on its face look like a mask. It’s always difficult to get pictures of small birds, but this one seemed to pose,” says Frank Lussier. Check out the top warbler hotspots to visit in spring.

American redstart female
Courtesy Linda Petersen

Female American Redstart

“I was in my backyard taking pictures of birds last fall when this female American redstart appeared at my water fountain. She was very excited to see water and kept hopping back and forth, fanning her tail feathers, trying to get brave enough to jump in the water,” says Linda Peterson. The females are small yellow and gray birds; males are black and reddish-orange.

white eyed vireo
Courtesy Shannon Hobson

White-Eyed Vireo

“My husband and I were bird watching in Mattie M. Kelly Park near our home in Destin, Florida, to see which migrants might have stopped in from a long trip over the Gulf. When we heard a white-eyed vireo singing; my husband made some squeaking noises and immediately this little guy flew right in front of us and just sang away. This photo shows the bird’s animated personality, curiosity and beauty. I love its white eyes!” says Shannon Hobson. Why do birds sing in spring?

Yellow breasted chat Red Rocks Park Jefferson County Colorado
milehightraveler/Getty Images

Yellow-Breasted Chat

A yellow-breasted chat perches in a cottonwood tree, watching over a meadow in Red Rocks Park, Jefferson County, Colorado. Don’t miss the 51 best spring bird pictures ever.

canada warbler
Courtesy Evelyn Johnson

Canada Warbler

Evelyn Johnson writes, “My husband and I have been avid photographers for over 30 years, focusing on wildlife, especially birds, for the last several years. This spring, we were privileged to capture a rarity with with our lens—a Canada warbler.”

saffron finch
Courtesy Shelley Ballam

Saffron Finch

“I took this photo in spring along Hilo Bay in Hawaii. There were numerous saffron finches around this day, but this momma getting ready for babies caught my eye,” says Shelley Ballam. This bird is a native of South America but may be spotted in Puerto Rico and the Hawaiian islands. Check out 20 photos of breathtaking blue colored birds.

Bnbbyc19 Catherine Forrest 2
Courtesy Catherine Forrest

Cape May Warbler

“The month of May brings spring warblers to Michigan. While enjoying a beautiful spring day at Tawas Point State Park on Lake Huron, I spotted my first glimpse of a Cape May warbler. Warblers are so colorful and full of energy. Luckily this small yellow bird decided to take a rest and I was able to get a picture of it,” says Catherine Forrest.

Follow these 8 ideas for attracting and feeding birds in spring.

Goldfinches of the US
Rob Ripma

Lesser Goldfinch

Rob Ripma photographed this lesser goldfinch in south Texas. Meet the 3 types of goldfinches in the United States.