The Cutest Birds in the World

These Canada goose chicks are undeniably cute, with all that soft, yellow down and their little wobbling gait.
These Canada goose chicks are undeniably cute, with all that soft, yellow down and their little wobbling gait. Look the word "cute" up in the dictionary and I wouldn't be surprised if you find a picture of these little guys. Photo © Christopher Kimmel / Getty Images.

From the dainty Eurasian wren to the rotund Adelie penguin, the range of cuteness in the avian world is wholly impressive.

Of course, every species of bird exhibits its own unique beauty and lists such as these are made more for fun than anything else. But here, with each adorable photo, we've included some facts about the species. So you'll not only be charmed, you'll also be expanding your knowledge of birds along the way.

01
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Eurasian Wren

The Eurasian wren (Troglodytes troglodytes) is easy to identify by its stubby tail, which it often holds upright.
The Eurasian wren (Troglodytes troglodytes) is easy to identify by its stubby tail, which it often holds upright. Photo © Gerard Soury / Getty Images.

At the top of our cute bird list is the Eurasian wren (Troglodytes troglodytes), a charismatic "little brown bird" that can fit in a teacup. Eurasian wrens are found throughout Europe and North America as well as in parts of Asia. Their cuteness is in no small part due to their slight stature and their plump body shape, which is further emphasized when they fluff up their feathers. Eurasian wrens are light brown and have a delicate, dark brown pattern of bars on their wings, tail, and body. Eurasian wrens weigh a mere one-quarter to one-half an ounce and full-grown birds are just 3 to 5 inches long, from bill to tail.

02
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Atlantic Puffin

The Atlantic puffin (Fratercula arctica) is cute for its unique, bold coloration and its proud stature.
The Atlantic puffin (Fratercula arctica) is cute for its unique, bold coloration and its proud stature. Photo © Danita Delimont / Getty Images.

Next up on our list of cute birds is the Atlantic puffin (Fratercula arctica), a charming seabird that nests in large, gregarious colonies along the rocky coastlines of the North Atlantic. Outside the breeding season, Atlantic puffins spend their time at sea, hunting for fish over open water. The Atlantic puffin owes its cuteness to its small, rotund stature and distinct coloration. It has black plumage on its back, wings and tail, and bright white plumage on its belly and face. Its bill, its signature feature, is large and triangular in shape. It is a bright orange-yellow color with a blue base and groves at the base.

03
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Black-Capped Chickadee

The black-capped chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) is not only cute but tough. This bird braves it out during North America's coldest winters.
The black-capped chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) is not only cute but tough. This bird braves it out during North America's coldest winters. Photo © Michelle Valberg / Getty Images.

The black-capped chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) is the next species on our list of cute birds. No such list is complete without this little charmer. Black-capped chickadees are often regulars at backyard feeders throughout North America. They are hardy little birds that remain residents throughout their range, even during the coldest winters. To cope with the extreme cold they often must endure, black-capped chickadees lower their body temperature at night, entering a state of regulated hypothermia and saving lots of energy in the process. As their name implies, black capped chickadees have a black cap, bib, and white cheeks. Their body plumage is more subtly colored, with a greenish-gray back, buff colored sides, and dark gray wings and tail.

04
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Northern Saw-Whet Owl

Northern saw-whet owls (Aegolius acadicus) have a distinct white Y-shaped patch on their facial disk.
Northern saw-whet owls (Aegolius acadicus) have a distinct white Y-shaped patch on their facial disk. Photo © Jared Hobbs / Getty Images.

No list of cute birds is complete without an owl. And northern saw-whet owls (Aegolius acadicus) are arguably among the cutest of all owl species. Northern saw-whet owls are small owls that have a round facial disk and large golden eyes. Like many owls, northern saw-whet owls are secretive, nocturnal birds that hunt small mammals such as deer mice and white-footed mice. Northern saw-whet owls occupy a range that stretches from coast to coast in North America. They breed in the boreal forests and northern hardwood forests of Alaska, British Columbia, the Pacific Northwest, and the Rocky Mountain states.

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Adelie Penguin

Adelie penguins (Pygoscelis adeliae) are named after Adelie d"Urville, the wife of the French antarctic explorer, Dumont d'Uurville.
Adelie penguins (Pygoscelis adeliae) are named after Adelie d"Urville, the wife of the French antarctic explorer, Dumont d'Uurville. Photo © Cameron Rutt / Getty Images.

For the next bird on our cute bird list, we travel to the world's southernmost latitudes, where we find the Adelie penguin, a species that like the black-capped chickadee, pairs its cuteness with toughness. Adelie penguins (Pygoscelis adeliae) inhabit a circumpolar region along the coastline of Antarctica. Adelie penguins are the classic penguins, with black plumage on their back, head, and the topside of their wings and white plumage on their belly and the underside of their wings.

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Costa's Hummingbird

There is all sorts of cuteness packed into this photo of an adult female Costa's hummingbird with her young.
There is all sorts of cuteness packed into this photo of an adult female Costa's hummingbird with her young. Photo © Ed Reschke / Getty Images.

Any list of cute birds is lacking something if it does not include a hummingbird. Here, we include the Costa's hummingbird (Calypte costae), a small hummingbird that lives in the deserts of southwestern United States and Mexico. Costa's hummingbirds are nearly as light as a postage stamp, with an average mass of just over one-tenth of an ounce. Costa's hummingbirds feed on the nectar from flowers such as those of the desert honeysuckle and the saguaro cactus.

07
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Blue-Footed Booby

Blue footed boobies have long wings that they fold back when they dive into the water after their prey. They feed mainly on small fish such as anchovies.
Blue footed boobies have long wings that they fold back when they dive into the water after their prey. They feed mainly on small fish such as anchovies. Photo © Jessie Reeder / Getty Images.

The blue-footed booby (Sula nebouxii) is equal parts cute and awkward -looking. Their most notable feature is their turquoise webbed feet. Like many seabirds, blue-footed are rather clumsy when moving on land, but they are graceful when flying over open water. The blue-footed booby belongs to the same group of birds that includes pelicans, cormorants, and tropicbirds. Blue-footed boobies are found along the western coast of Central America and South America and various coastal islands in that region, including the Galapagos Islands.

08
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Dunlin

Some populations of dunlins spend their winters along North America's Pacific Coast, Atlantic Coast, and the coast of the Gulf of Mexico.
Some populations of dunlins spend their winters along North America's Pacific Coast, Atlantic Coast, and the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Photo © Hiroyuki Uchiyama / Getty Images.

The dunlin (Calidris alpina) is a widespread species of sandpiper that inhabits a circumpolar region in the Arctic and Subarctic. Dunlins breed along the coastlines of Alaska and northern Canada and over-winters in more southern coastal regions around the world. The species is quite diverse, with some 10 recognized subspecies. Dunlins feed on clams, worms, and other invertebrates. During the breeding season, dunlins have a distinct black patch on their belly, but outside of the breeding season their belly is white.