By M. Keith Hudson, Wildlife Biologist

How knowledgeable are you about Alabama birds? Here’s a short quiz on Alabama’s birds to test your knowledge. So let’s have some fun. Put on your thinking cap…and away we fly! 

1. What is the State Bird of Alabama?

(A) Bald Eagle (B) Northern Flicker (C) Eastern Bluebird (D) American Robin


2. How many kinds (species) of birds can be found in Alabama?

(A) Less than 100 (B) 100-200 (C) 200-300 (D) 300-400


3. How many kinds (species) of birds breed in Alabama?

(A) Less than 100 (B) 100-200 (C) 200-300 (D) 300-400


4. What is Alabama’s heaviest bird (weighs the most)?

(A) Trumpeter Swan (B) Bald Eagle (C) Golden Eagle (D) Great Blue Heron


5. What bird in Alabama has the largest wingspan?

(A) Great Blue Heron (B) Bald Eagle (C) White Pelican (D) Wood Stork


6. What is the fastest bird in Alabama?

(A) Ruby-throated Hummingbird (B) Peregrine Falcon (C) Chimney Swift (D) Canada Goose


7. What is the smallest heron in Alabama?

(A) Little Blue Heron (B) Green-backed Heron (C) Black-crowned Night Heron (D) Least Bittern


8. How many broods can the Mourning Dove potentially raise each year in Alabama?

(A) 2 (B) 4 (C) 6 (D) 10


9. Which of these birds was historically not a native Alabama Bird?

(A) House Sparrow (B) Cattle Egret (C) European Starling (D) House Finch (E) All of these


10. What Alabama bird has the nickname “butcher bird?”

(A) Turkey Vulture (B) Black Vulture (C) Red-tailed Hawk (D) Golden Eagle (E) None of these


11. How many species of eagle(s) are found in Alabama?

(A) 1 (B) 2 (C) 3 (D) 4 (E) None of these


12. What is the most common species of hummingbird in Alabama?

(A) Rufous (B) Black-chinned (C) Ruby-throated (D). Magnificent


13. Which of the following birds may be legally hunted in Alabama?

(A) Mourning Dove (B) King Rail (C) Wood Duck (D) Snipe (E) All of these


14. What bird found in Alabama - instead of the Bald Eagle - did Thomas Jefferson propose to be our national symbol?

(A) Wild Turkey (B) American Robin (C) American Woodcock (D) None of these


15. What bird is the symbol for the North Alabama Birding Trail?

(A) Bald Eagle (B) Belted Kingfisher (C) Carolina Wren (D) Northern Cardinal 



1. (B) The Northern Flicker, also called the Yellowhammer, is the state bird of Alabama. 

2. (D) The Alabama Bird Records Committee lists 397 bird species that have been seen in Alabama. 

3. (B) One hundred seventy-nine species of birds breed within Alabama. 

4. (A) The Trumpeter Swan is Alabama’s heaviest bird weighing 40 pounds or more. 

5. (C) The American White Pelican has the longest wingspan - 9 feet - of any regularly occurring Alabama bird. 

6. (B) The Peregrine Falcon is considered Alabama’s fastest bird. It regularly attains speeds of 40-60 mph and has been clocked in steep dives at 175 mph. 

7. (D) Only 11 to 14 inches long, the Least Bittern is the smallest heron in Alabama – indeed, the world. 

8. (C) The Mourning Dove may raise up to six broods per year, more than any other Alabama bird. 

9. (E) All of these. All are introduced birds and were not found historically in Alabama. 

10. (E) None of these. The Loggerhead Shrike"s habit of storing uneaten prey impaled on thorns or barbed wire has given it the nickname "butcherbird." 

11. (B) Two. The Bald Eagle and the Golden Eagle are the two species of eagles found in Alabama. 

12. (C) The Ruby-throated Hummingbird is the most common species of hummingbird found in Alabama. 

13. (E) All of these. Mourning Doves, King Rails, Wood Ducks, and Common Snipe are all game birds with seasons and bag limits and may be legally hunted in Alabama. And yes, there is a real bird called a snipe! 

14. (D) None of these. Benjamin Franklin proposed the Wild Turkey as our national bird, rather than Thomas Jefferson. Don’t you just hate trick multiple-choice questions? 

15. (B) The Belted Kingfisher is the symbol for the North Alabama Birding Trail and can be seen on trail logos, signs and Visitor Guides. 


Count up your correct answers. 

For 12-15 correct answers, give yourself an A. Congratulations! You are pretty well informed about Alabama birds – we might need you working for Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries! 

Get 8-11 correct? That’s a B. Still pretty good. I bet you know your way around a pair of binoculars. 

Three correct answers or less? Uh-oh, can you say “bird-brain”? 

Bird watching in Alabama is one of the fastest growing forms of outdoor recreation. The North Alabama Birding Trail joins the Alabama Coastal Birding Trail in offering a quality outdoor birding experience to this expanding segment of outdoor enthusiasts.