If you’re a birder, you probably have your own opinion of what are the 12 most beautiful birds in Texas and you’re right because beauty is in the eye of the beholder!

Here are what Cliff Shackelford, an ornithologist for Texas Parks & Wildlife, in an article in Texas Parks & Wildlife Magazine considers his choice for the most beautiful birds in Texas.

Red-Headed Woodpecker

With crisp, solid hues of black, white, and red, this bird steals the show with color and chutzpah.

Violet-Green Swallow

Hard to beat the violet-green swallow as its green-purple topside feathers contrast with a snow-white belly.

Swallow-tailed Kite

The beauty of this bird is the way it flies gracefully and effortlessly through the ski.

Scissor-Tailed Flycatcher

The official state bird of Oklahoma, it’s peachy sides and flowing tail make for a beautiful sight.

Tricolored Heron

They have varying shades of purple and blue on the bill and straw colored plumes.

Hooded Merganser

A simple black and white bird with cinnamon sides but the all white rounded crest steals the show.

Rufous Hummingbird

To attract this bird, fill you bird feeder with four parts water to one part sugar.

Purple Gallinule

A beautiful purple and what appears to be an ability to walk on water.

Montezuma Quail

Often called “fool’s quail” the male is spectacular and can be easily observed in the Davis Mountains.

Prothonotary Warbler

A distinctive song this tiny songbird of East Texas’ hardwood forests.

Le Conte’s Sparrow

The LeConte’s broad, buff eyebrow and intricate ring around the collar make this guy distinctive.

Black-Capped Vireo

Hard to see, the Black-Capped Vireo is shy and sticks to the shrubs.

Simon Trask
Author: Simon Trask

Simon loves Texas and the Great Outdoors. From East Texas pines to West Texas mountains, he calls North Texas home but is always ready to float a river in Hill Country or go fishing on the Gulf Coast. Simon loves camping and road trips as well, whether it's cruising Highway 287, 82, 69 or 281, that's the true way to see what Texas is all about!

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