Content tagged with "Birds"

Image of long-eared owl.

Long-Eared Owl

Asio otus
Strictly nocturnal and highly secretive by day, this crow-sized owl hunts over open country at night.

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Photo of male and female mallards walking on ice


Anas platyrhynchos
The mallard is probably the most familiar duck in all of North America. The male has a green head and chestnut breast. Both sexes have a blue speculum (wing patch) bordered on both sides by white.

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Photograph of a Mourning Dove walking on the ground

Mourning Dove

Zenaida macroura
Doves symbolize peace, and they are also a popular quarry of hunters. Our mourning doves are probably the closest living relatives of the extinct passenger pigeon. Learn more about these cooing seed-eaters!

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Photo of male northern bobwhite

Northern Bobwhite (Bobwhite Quail)

Colinus virginianus
With its distinctive, clear “bob-WHITE!” calls, the official state game bird is often heard before it’s seen, especially since its brown-and-white coloration helps it to disappear into its habitat.

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Photo of male northern cardinal

Northern Cardinal

Cardinalis cardinalis
At one time, Missouri had two professional sports teams named after this bird, and it’s no wonder the northern cardinal is so popular: it’s a striking red bird with a dashing crest and a natty black mask—and it’s an excellent singer, too!

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Image of a northern flicker

Northern Flicker

Colaptes auratus
America’s flickers used to be considered three different species, but in the 1980s biologists determined otherwise. Now, our eastern “yellow-shafted” flicker, the “red-shafted” flicker of the west and the “gilded flicker” of the southwest are all considered just “forms” of the same species: the northern flicker.

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Photo of a northern pintail pair floating on water.

Northern Pintail

Anas acuta
A dabbling duck named for its long, tapered tail, the northern pintail is a common migrant in Missouri. Like other dabblers, it can leap into flight right from the surface of the water.

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Northern Saw-Whet Owl

Northern Saw-Whet Owl

Aegolius acadicus
The most nocturnal of our owls. On the rare occasions it is seen, it is usually perched near the ground in dense cover or in the entrance of a tree cavity.

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Photo of a northern shoveler pair floating on water.

Northern Shoveler

Anas clypeata
Northern shovelers are dabbling ducks with remarkably long, heavy-looking bills. The male’s green head may remind you of a mallard’s, but the bill is far heavier.

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Photograph of osprey in flight


Pandion haliaetus
Osprey, also called “fish hawks” or “fish eagles,” used to be more common in our state, but their numbers are increasing. Keep an eye out for them, especially around reservoirs and during spring and fall migration, as reintroduction efforts are paying off!

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