Yellow-billed Magpie Identification.
Many birds have yellow beaks, including the common blackbird, American robin, starlings, bald eagle, and magpies. All of these birds possess characteristics that make them unique.
It is always claimed that birds in the crow family have yellow beaks. This is probably down to a confusion involving the blackbird. They are not ravens or crows, but a kind of thrush.
In summer starlings have yellow bills and pale spots on their backs, which blackbirds, cowbirds, and grackles never have. In the winter starlings are covered in bright white spots that these other species lack.
There are some very distinctive differences between male and female Blackbirds as follows: Male adult Blackbirds have black plumage with orange-yellow beak and similar eye-ring. Female Blackbirds are dark brown in colour and have a duller yellow-brown beak.
They both are black in color with their legs and beaks. There is a slight hint of grey and brown when you see a raven in direct sunlight. Their legs also seem a bit slightly off-color but still in the tone of black. Crows are entirely black, including their legs and beaks.
Crow look-alike birds are common ravens, red-winged blackbirds, common grackles, brown-headed cowbirds, western jackdaws, pied currawongs, western rooks, black-billed magpies, alpine choughs, European starlings, and more.
To distinguish a crow from a raven, listen to their calls. Crows most often have an even caw, caw sound, while ravens have a deeper, throatier, croaking call. If you’re able to observe a bird up close, you’ll see that ravens have fluffier feathers around their head and especially at their throat.
Raven (Corvus corax)
They have thick necks with shaggy throat feathers and a thick, black bill.
Crows are usually larger than magpies, but magpies have a much longer tail. Magpies tend to be black and white, blue, or green, whereas most crows are completely black. Crows make distinctive cup-shaped nests, while magpies’ nests are dome-shaped.
Distinctive Physical Traits. The crow is an all-rounder black-colored bird, from its eyes to its bills down to the feet. In Blackbirds, however, you are likely to find a distinctive slight tinge of color, sometimes on the wing bar, eyes, or even the beak.
Starling. Known for being a social bird, starlings are often found flying in a flock. Keep an eye out for its distinctive speckled, metallic feathers and bright yellow beak.
Females, however, are actually dark brown, with lighter brown streaks on the breast. Juveniles look similar to the fully-grown female but have copper streaks. Males have a bright yellow bill and distinctive yellow eye ring. Females have a duller, yellow-brown beak.
Adult male American Redstarts are mostly black with bright orange patches on the sides, wings, and tail. The belly is white. Females and immature males replace the orange with yellow or yellow-orange. They have gray head and underparts, with olive back and wings and dark-gray tail.
The starling’s beak also undergoes some changes throughout the year. The nearer the breeding season, the more sex hormones the starling produces. This ensures that the beak goes from black in winter to yellow-white during mating time. This color change also helps distinguish males from females.
The Four Keys to ID
Common Grackles are large, lanky blackbirds with long legs and long tails. The head is flat and the bill is longer than in most blackbirds, with the hint of a downward curve. In flight, the wings appear short in comparison to the tail. Males are slightly larger than females.
Common Grackles are larger than Brewer’s Blackbirds with a longer tail and a heavier bill. Male Common Grackles have a bluish sheen on the head, whereas Brewer’s have a purplish sheen.
Depending on the culture, Blackbird Spirit may be welcome as a good omen or the messenger of bad news. The dark wings of Blackbird give it associations with the Otherworld and the great Mysteries that haunt human souls; this also means it can fly as a messenger of death.
Along with the robin I would say they are the friendliest of the garden birds and can become quite tame - although they are also quite fickle in that they can be your ‘best friend’ when they’re particularly hungry but when the sun is shining and there are berries on the bush they do tend to blow a little cool.
Economic impacts. The Common Blackbird can be a pest in orchards, parks and gardens, being rather destructive of ground vegetation, particularly backyard vegetable patches.
Crows have a subtle iridescent sheen to their feathers, whereas most grackle species have iridescence that borders on dazzling blue. Female grackles aren’t quite as flashy as the males. In most species, female grackles sport dull brown plumage. Conversely, both male and female crows have the same black-colored plumage.
Ravens are quite vigorous at defending their young and are usually successful at driving off perceived threats. They attack potential predators by flying at them and lunging with their large bills. Humans are occasionally attacked if they get close to a raven nest, though serious injuries are unlikely.
This spirit animal comes to you when you need guidance or reassurance on your path in life. People often associate ravens with bad omens or darker energy, but they also symbolize other, more positive things as well. Seeing ravens often signifies that you have a strong, mysterious energy force in your life.
At a distance, starlings look black. In summer they are purplish-green iridescent with yellow beaks; in fresh winter plumage they are brown, covered in brilliant white spots. Starlings are boisterous, loud, and they travel in large groups (often with blackbirds and grackles).
Basic Description. This handsome little finch, the state bird of New Jersey, Iowa, and Washington, is welcome and common at feeders, where it takes primarily sunflower and nyjer. Goldfinches often flock with Pine Siskins and Common Redpolls. Spring males are brilliant yellow and shiny black with a bit of white.