Species of Birds Found in Alaska
Alaska is a birds’ heaven. With more than 500 documented species, birds’ enthusiasts are sure of getting unique thrill following them in the woods, swamps, bays, and rock crevices. Here are some of the species that you should expect to see in Alaska.
- The least sandpiper: Though this bird looks like other sandpipers, it is easily identifiable because of its small body. It is the smallest documented shorebird in the entire globe.
- Black legged kittiwake: This black-legged Kittiwake is a species of smaller gulls that establishes its nest in open rocks. Though this nest location protects the chicks from threats on the ground, they are left prone to other dangers from above especially the dangerous Eagles.
- The Northern Shoveler: This bird is found in Alaska and Canada. Its distinguishing characteristic includes an elongated bill that is wider on the tip and contains small protections that help strain food from water. Males are dark green on the head and rusty sides while females have a brown head and appear speckled all over the body.
- Red necked grebes: This is a migratory bird that only comes to Alaska in summer to breed. It is known for aggressive behaviour during the summer while those that remain in winter are very quiet. Notably, the bird swallows its feathers to assist with filtering indigestible bones. Besides, it flies mostly at night but navigates in the water during the day.
- Horned puffins: This is one of the most beautiful birds that every watcher who comes to Alaska wants to see. Their bills are dark-red, backs are black while the underside is white. What makes them even more attractive are the orange feet and unique horny feathers that roll back from behind the eyes. They usually come to the rocky coastline of Alaska where they live in colonies before departing.
- The common raven: These are the common crows that have existed for years. They have a special attraction to people and will always follow you to the Alaskan hiking camps or party sites. In winter they can be seen resting in groups of thousands or more.
- The Northern Goshawk: This is one of the carrion birds that can be easily spotted all over Alaska. It hides in trees targeting prey especially other smaller birds and rodents among other smaller animals.
- The emperor goose: It has a typical goose body with a white head and black body with thin white lines. They are true arctic residents and rarely go far from Alaska and Siberia.
- The bald eagle: This is a bird of prey known for building very wide nests for many years. They are fast when taking on prey and are even known to swim when taking fish from the water.
- Common loon: The common loon is an easy spot in Northern wild lands of Alaska. They spend most of the time in the water. The legs are positioned on the far back that helps them to propel through the water rapidly. The bird only leaves the water to lay eggs and heads back when the chicks are a few days old.
- Parasitic Jaeger: Bird watchers commonly refer to the Parasitic Jaeger as a ‘fish pirate’ because it steals food from other birds with ruthlessness. Any bird that comes close to it is harassed with multiple dives and pecks and is known to cause trouble even to bigger birds.