21 Bird Names That Start With K

Bird Names That Start With K
Photo by Gary Bendig

Want to know what bird names that start with K? You’ve arrived at the proper location. We’ll go over a list of several birds with the letter K and provide information on each in this post.

So, whether you’re a bird fanatic or just trying to learn more, this is for you. I’ve witnessed arguments between adults and children over which bird begins with the letter K, and somehow this list always manages to settle the conflict. 

Below are some bird names that start with K: 

1. Kelp Gull  

  • Scientific Name: Larus dominicanus 

A medium-sized gull species known as the “Kelp Gull” also goes by the names “Dominican Gull,” “Mollyhawk,” and “Black-backed Gull.” 

Their native habitat includes Australia, New Zealand, and South America. You will only see these seabirds in the United States as scarce migrants; they are not ordinarily present in North America. 

The head, top parts, underparts, and underwings of kelp gulls are all white. Their wings are dark in hue and have numerous white markings. Their lower mandible has a red mark and yellow legs and bills. 

The adult Kelp Gulls exhibit size dimorphism and are sexually monochromatic. Males are heavier than females in comparison. 

2. Kaempfer’s Tody-Tyrant 

  • Scientific Name: Hemitriccus kaempferi 

Next on our list of bird names that start with K is Kaempfer’s Tody-Tyrant. The Kaempfer’s Tody Tyrant was only known with two specimens up until the 1990s is what makes it so unusual.

Lives in Southeastern Brazil, protected by law in its native Brazil, and recognized as an endangered species in the United States.

It typically grows to around four inches and is recognized for its olive-green hue. The two specimens of this bird were initially discovered in 1991 after being collected in 1929 and 1950. 

3. Kentucky Warbler 

  • Scientific Name: Geothlypis Formosa 

A species of migratory warbler in the New World Warbler family is the Kentucky Warbler. In the eastern and central regions of the country, Kentucky Warblers spend their breeding seasons.

They move to the Caribbean islands for the winter. The tail of adult Kentucky Warblers is noticeably short, and they have a large bodies.

They have an olive green head and upper body with pale yellow undersides. Their face has a pronounced black eye mask, and their crest also has darker accents.

The ladies have slightly duller plumage but are otherwise comparable in color to their male counterparts. 

Most Kentucky Warblers are ground-dwelling birds but sing when flying too high branches. They eat various insects, including grasshoppers, ants, aphids, and grubs. They are primarily insectivorous. 

4. Kaempfer’s Woodpecker 

  • Scientific Name: Celeus obrieni 

Sadly, until it was seen again in 2006 and was added to the red list of severely endangered species in 2007, this bird was thought to be gone.

The Kaempfer’s Woodpecker lives in Brazil. It is renowned for its stunning red, black, and rufous-chestnut colors.

Little is known about the Kaempfer’s Woodpecker habitat, although Kaempfer’s was named after the man who first captured the bird. 

5. King Penguin 

  • Scientific Name: Aptenodytes patagonicus 

The King Penguin is also one of the bird names that start with K. It is the second largest penguin species in the world, closely related to the Emperor Penguin but smaller in size. 

These penguins breed along the Subantarctic Islands’ coastlines. They dive deep into the water bodies (up to 100 meters) while foraging to capture krill, squid, and lanternfish, which make up most of their diet. 

The adult King Penguins are monochromatic in terms of sex, with the males being larger than the females. King Penguins, like all other penguin species, have a white underbelly, a black face, and upper portions. Their black bill, neck, and chest all feature yellow patches. 

6. Kagu 

  • Scientific Name: Rhynochetos jubatus 

The Kagu bird is found in New Caledonia’s forests and shrublands. It is a carnivore that eats worms, snails, and lizards. The fact that these birds are monogamous and frequently mate for life is intriguing.

The female Kagu lays only one egg annually. If the initial attempt is unsuccessful, the female will attempt to lay another egg. It is a bird that flies rarely. It can only move through the forest with the help of its wings. 

7. Keel-Billed Toucan 

  • Scientific Name: Ramphastos Sulfuratus 

Next on our list of bird names that start with K is the Keel-Billed Toucan. The Keel-billed Toucan is a species of Latin American toucan that lives in tropical forests and has been designated as the national bird of Belize.

Although Keel-billed Toucans appear vast and hefty, their hollow, keratin-covered bones are light. The Keel-Billed Toucan face and beak are the only parts of their short-tailed body that are not fully covered in black. 

These birds have a lemon-yellow patch on their face that extends to their throat. Their bill is green with a red tip and an orange patch on the upper mandible.

Young Keel-billed Due to the sexual monomorphism of toucans, both sexes have the same outward appearance. Fruits, seeds, insects, lizards, tiny birds, and eggs make up their omnivore diet. 

8. Karoo Lark 

  •  Scientific Name: Calendulauda albescens 

The red-backed lark often called the Karoo lark, is a member of the lark family. The karoo lark lives on dry shrubland in tropical and subtropical regions.

In sandy places, it enjoys digging for food. Its primary dietary source is insects. A medium-sized lark, the karoo lark. Male birds enjoy singing from bushes. 

9. Kelp Goose 

  • Scientific Name: Chloephaga hybrida 

The Kelp Geese are a species of shelduck found in South America that is a member of the waterfowl family (Anatidae). They may even migrate if there is a kelp shortage in their breeding sites. 

Their female counterparts, in contrast, have dark brown plumage with prominent grey streaks. They have yellow eye rings and legs. 

Kelp Geese females have an unusual egg-laying ritual. It takes them roughly a month to hatch after they have set their eggs. Mother geese frequently bury their eggs in tall grass to protect them during this time. 

 10. Karoo Korhaan 

  • Scientific Name: Eupodotis vigorsii 

The Karoo Korhaan is also a bird name that starts with K. The bustard family of birds includes the Karoo korhaan species of bird.

The bustard is one of the smaller ones, measuring only 24 inches. Males weigh 56 ounces, but females weigh 48 ounces, making males somewhat more extensive than females.

The sole physical difference between males and females is that females have less black pigment on the throat region. Lives in southern Africa, and despite being omnivorous, plants make up most of the karoo korhaan’s diet. 

11. Kea  

  • Scientific Name: Nestor notabilis 

The Keas, an endangered parrot species in New Zealand’s alpine forests, are members of the New Zealand parrot family (Nestoridae). Due primarily to unlawful poaching and lead poisoning, their number is rapidly declining. 

Like all other Nestor parrots, they are huge in stature and have dull-colored plumage. These birds’ feathers are predominantly olive green with hints of dark grey on their wings.

Their top mandible has a hooked shape and is noticeably longer than the lower one. Their eyes and cere are dark browns. 

Both sexes have the same plumage, but you can tell them apart by their total body size and bill. Compared to females, males are bigger and have a longer upper mandible. 

Despite being omnivores, keas can consume large mammals and birds like sheep and rabbits for food. 

12. Karoo Thrush 

  • Scientific Name: Turdus smithi 

The Northern Cape, Gauteng, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Little Namaqualand, and the Free State are among the South African provinces where the Karoo thrush is most frequently observed. With a length of 24 cm, it is medium size.

Smith’s thrush is another name for this bird. Karoo thrushes produce tiny, light mint-green eggs with various-sized brown specks. 

 13. Killdeer  

  • Scientific Name: Charadrius Vociferus 

Next on our list of bird names that start with K is Killdeer. The Killdeer is a plover species native to the Americas and only partially migratory. There are three subspecies of these wading birds, which got their names from their calls. 

Compared to other plover species, killdeers are reasonably extensive and have white faces and underbodies.

They wear two black rings on their face and two more on their throat, totaling four black rings. Their wings are dark brown, while their upper parts are a light shade of rufous. 

Some of the killdeers’ primary field identification features include red eye rings, small, dark bills, and orange legs and feet. 

The face and chest bands are the most effective ways to tell the sexes apart. While these bands are black in males, they are brown in female counterparts. 

14. Kashmir Flycatcher 

  • Scientific Name: Ficedula subrubra 

Lives in the northwest Himalayas, central Sri Lanka, and the Western Ghats of India. The sound and call of these tiny birds are beautiful.

Unfortunately, due to declining populations, this species is yet another one deemed vulnerable. Their distribution is constrained to Sri Lanka and a few isolated regions of India. 

15. Knob-Billed Duck 

  • Scientific Name: Sarkidiornis melanotos 

The Knob-billed Duck, sometimes known as the “African Comb Duck,” is a larger duck species. With a large population in southern China, Madagascar, the Indian subcontinent, and sub-Saharan Africa, these ducks are usually found in tropical wetlands. 

Knob-billed Ducks have a white head speckled with black dots and closely resemble American Comb Ducks. The neck and undersides are pristine white, while the upper sections are shiny blue. 

Adults of both sexes can be differentiated by size and bill anatomy while having similar plumage. Males outnumber females in size and have a distinctive knob-like bill that is missing in females. 

16. Kerguelen Tern 

  • Scientific Name: Sterna virgata 

Next on our list of bird names that start with K is Kerguelen Tern. It is known that these seabirds breed in groups. The Kerguelen Islands, after which they were given their name, are where they produce.

Between 3500 and 6500 seems to be an alarmingly small amount for them. The Kerguelen Tern consumes fish and marine invertebrates. 

In coastal regions of the United States like Florida, you can locate different tern species, including royal terns. When the weather is harsh, they have a reputation for leaving their colonies. 

17. King Eider 

  • Scientific Name: Somateria spectabilis 

A species of circumpolar sea duck breeds in the Northern Hemisphere is the king eider. Both tundra environments and the Arctic beaches include them. They are evident in the marine Arctic and Subarctic regions during the winter. 

King Eiders have a substantial size and color sexual dimorphism. During the breeding seasons, the males look different and are significantly heavier than the females. The non-breeding males and females, however, resemble one another pretty closely. 

Except for their head and neck, the males’ bodies are primarily black throughout the breeding season, on both the top and bottom. On their head, you may see traces of pale blue. 

Similar in appearance to non-breeding males and females, they have an overall brown body with whiter heads and necks. 

18. King Quail 

  • Scientific Name: Synoicus chinensis 

Lives in China, Southeast Asia, and Southeast Australia.  Without a doubt, this bird’s colour is its most striking characteristic. Males can be any shade of brown, blue, dark brown, maroon, or a hue that is very close to black.

The female is identical in color to the male but lacks the blue tint. Males compete with one another to mate with females. The victor takes it all. 

19. Kentish Plover 

  • Scientific Name: Charadrius alexandrines 

Kentish Plover is also a bird name that starts with K. A small, widely distributed species of seabird, Kentish Plovers are frequently seen in lagoons, salt lakes, dunes, tundra, marshes, and deserts.

These waders can be found worldwide. Also, some of their populations are migratory. 

Small in size, Kentish Plovers have dark legs and black bills. The males have a rufous nape, ear coverts, breast band, and dark head bar. In their female counterparts, all of these parts are noticeably paler. 

In the breeding seasons, when males grow their flank feathers significantly longer than their female counterparts, the visual distinctions between the sexes are more prominent. 

20. Kirtland’s Warbler 

  • Scientific Name: Setophaga kirtlandii 

Natives of Michigan refer to the Kirtland Warbler as the Jack Pine Bird. They spend the breeding season in remote northern Michigan and Wisconsin areas, while their winters are spent in the Bahamas. 

One of the most endangered songbird species in the country is the Kirtland warbler. The oldest bird ever observed they lived to be nine years old, although these birds typically have limited lifespans.

They primarily eat insects and fruit. They build their nests on the ground and cover them with plants. 

21. King Rail 

  • Scientific Name: Rallus elegant 

Last on our list of bird names that start with K is King Rail. The King Rails are North America’s most significant rail species, as their name implies.

The primary danger to the diminishing number of these birds, considered a near-threatened species, is habitat loss. Interestingly, all other rail species are nocturnal, while King Rails are the sole diurnal species. 

These birds have rusty brown faces, darker bodies, and buffy-colored throats and underparts. Both their legs and bills are lengthy and slightly curved.

With little sexual dimorphism, both sexes seem similar. King Rails primarily eat crustaceans and other aquatic insects while foraging in shallow waters. 

This concludes our discussion on bird names that start with the letter K.

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