10 Birds With Crested Heads - Happiestbeaks

Hammad Tariq

· 11 min read
10 Birds With Crested Heads

The avian world is adorned with a diverse array of features, and among the most distinctive is the crested head. These charismatic birds, distinguished by the prominent tuft of feathers atop their heads, captivate the attention of bird enthusiasts and casual observers alike. The crest serves both functional and ornamental purposes, often playing a role in communication or enhancing the bird's appearance during courtship displays.

In this exploration of "birds with crested heads," we delve into the fascinating world of these feathered crown-wearers, uncovering the variety of species that boast this unique and eye-catching feature. Join us on a journey to discover the allure and significance of crested birds in the avian kingdom.

10 Birds With Crested Heads

Northern Cardinal

The Northern Cardinal, a beloved songbird, is renowned not only for its vibrant red plumage but also for the distinctive crest that adorns its head. Found in gardens and woodlands across North America, these Cardinals are a common sight at bird feeders. The crest, often raised or lowered based on their mood, adds an element of charm to their appearance.

Male Northern Cardinals boast a brilliant red hue with a black mask around their faces, while females exhibit a more subtle combination of tan and red. Both genders, however, share the iconic crest. Cardinals are known for their melodious songs, and the crest may play a role in communication during courtship or territorial disputes.

These birds are not migratory, making them a year-round delight for bird enthusiasts. With their distinctive crests and vibrant colors, Northern Cardinals bring joy and beauty to the birdwatching experience.

Great Crested Grebe

The Great Crested Grebe is a fascinating waterbird that captures attention with its unique appearance. As its name suggests, this bird is characterized by a striking crest on its head, adding an elegant touch to its overall look. Found in freshwater habitats across Europe, Asia, and parts of Africa, the Great Crested Grebe is a skilled swimmer and diver.

During the breeding season, these birds exhibit elaborate courtship displays, including the famous "weed dance." They create heart-shaped formations with water plants, showcasing their commitment to a potential mate. The crest, typically inconspicuous when not raised, becomes more pronounced during these displays, emphasizing the bird's elegance.

Tufted Puffin

The Tufted Puffin is a charming seabird known for its distinctive appearance, making it a favorite among bird enthusiasts. Nesting along the coastlines of the North Pacific, from California to Alaska, this puffin stands out with its striking tufts of long, yellow feathers that extend backward from its head during the breeding season.

Recognizable by its bold black and white plumage, the Tufted Puffin boasts a colorful bill that transitions from red-orange to yellow. During the breeding season, this bill takes on an even more vibrant hue, adding to the bird's charismatic charm. Despite their somewhat comical appearance, Tufted Puffins are skilled fliers and adept swimmers, using their wings to "fly" underwater in search of small fish and marine invertebrates.

Crowned Crane

The Crowned Crane is a majestic bird with a distinctive appearance, notable for the regal crown of golden feathers on its head. Found in various habitats across Africa, these cranes are known for their striking plumage and elegant demeanor.

Characterized by a unique crest of stiff, golden feathers atop its head, the Crowned Crane's appearance is reminiscent of a royal headdress. Its body features a mix of white, black, and shades of gray, complemented by a long neck and legs. Standing at a considerable height, the Crowned Crane is an impressive and graceful bird.

Known for their elaborate courtship dances, Crowned Cranes engage in intricate movements, including bowing, jumping, and wing-flapping, to attract a mate. They are omnivores, feeding on a varied diet that includes insects, small vertebrates, seeds, and plant matter.

Crested Caracara

The Crested Caracara is a distinctive bird of prey found in the Americas, particularly in open habitats such as grasslands, savannas, and agricultural areas. Known for its striking appearance and opportunistic feeding habits, the Crested Caracara possesses unique characteristics that set it apart from other raptors.

One of the most noticeable features of the Crested Caracara is its distinctive crest atop its head, which gives it a regal and commanding presence. With a mix of black, white, and brown plumage, these birds are easily recognizable in their natural habitats.

Crested Caracaras are versatile hunters and scavengers, feeding on a variety of prey including insects, small mammals, reptiles, carrion, and even bird eggs. They are often observed scavenging alongside vultures, taking advantage of carrion and other food sources.

Sulphur-crested Cockatoo

The Sulphur-crested Cockatoo is a captivating and iconic parrot native to Australia, known for its vibrant appearance and intelligent nature. These large and striking birds are easily recognizable by their sulphur-yellow crest, which they can raise or lower based on their mood or emotions.

With predominantly white plumage, the Sulphur-crested Cockatoo exhibits a vivid yellow crest that adds a burst of color to their appearance. The crest, when fully extended, creates a stunning visual display, making these cockatoos a popular choice among bird enthusiasts.

Sulphur-crested Cockatoos are highly social birds, often seen in flocks that can number in the dozens. They have a distinctive screeching call that is both loud and attention-grabbing, serving as a means of communication within the flock.

These cockatoos are not only visually striking but also possess remarkable intelligence. They are known for their ability to mimic human speech and various sounds, showcasing their cognitive capabilities. However, their vocalizations can sometimes be a challenge for those not accustomed to their noisy nature.

Great Blue Turaco

The Great Blue Turaco, with its majestic presence and stunning plumage, is a captivating bird native to the forests of equatorial Africa. Known for its vibrant blue and green coloration, this turaco stands out as a symbol of the rich biodiversity found in its natural habitat.

One of the most distinctive features of the Great Blue Turaco is its vibrant blue feathers, which adorn the wings and tail. Complementing the blue, the bird displays shades of green on its body and head, creating a harmonious and visually appealing color palette. These striking colors make the Great Blue Turaco a sought-after sight for birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts.

Apart from its aesthetic appeal, this turaco is characterized by a unique structure on its head called a "casque." The casque is a growth of keratin, the same protein found in human hair and nails. While the exact purpose of the casque remains a subject of scientific inquiry, it is believed to play a role in acoustic communication or thermoregulation.

Crested Auklet

The Crested Auklet, a charming seabird found in the northern Pacific, stands out with its distinctive appearance and engaging behaviors. Characterized by a unique crest atop its head, this auklet is a fascinating species that adds to the diversity of marine life.

Easily identifiable by its crest, the Crested Auklet's plume extends like a set of ornamental, wispy feathers. During the breeding season, this crest becomes particularly prominent, serving as a visual cue in courtship displays. Both males and females boast this endearing feature, contributing to the species' charm.

Known for their agile flight and excellent diving capabilities, Crested Auklets primarily feed on small fish and invertebrates. Their diet consists of marine organisms obtained by diving underwater, showcasing their adaptability to a marine lifestyle.

European Crested Tit

The European Crested Tit, a petite and lively bird, adds a touch of charm to the woodlands and coniferous forests it calls home. With its distinctive crest and vibrant personality, this tit species stands out among its feathered companions.

Identified by a small but noticeable crest on its head, the European Crested Tit sports a black and white pattern on its face, creating an endearing and easily recognizable appearance. The crest becomes more pronounced during the breeding season, enhancing its overall appeal.

These agile birds are adept at navigating dense vegetation and are known for their acrobatic foraging. Feeding primarily on insects, seeds, and small berries, the European Crested Tit plays a vital role in maintaining the ecological balance of its habitat.


The Hoopoe, with its distinctive appearance and unique behaviors, stands out as a fascinating and charming bird in the avian world. Recognized by its striking crown of feathers and distinctive call, the Hoopoe is a delightful species found across Europe, Asia, and Africa.

Featuring a long, slender, and gently curved bill, the Hoopoe's crown of feathers resembles a fan when raised. This captivating appearance, combined with its earth-toned plumage adorned with black and white markings, makes the Hoopoe easily identifiable.

Known for its distinctive "oop-oop-oop" call, this bird adds a musical touch to its surroundings. Equally remarkable is the Hoopoe's foraging technique, characterized by its unique ability to probe the ground with its long bill to extract insects and larvae.

Final Words

In conclusion, birds with crested heads, such as the Hoopoe, bring a touch of elegance and uniqueness to the avian kingdom. The diverse species discussed, each with its distinctive features and behaviors, highlight the beauty of nature's creations.

From the vibrant Sulphur-crested Cockatoo to the regal Crowned Crane, these birds enrich ecosystems and captivate observers worldwide. As stewards of the environment, it is our responsibility to appreciate and safeguard these remarkable creatures, ensuring that future generations can continue to marvel at the fascinating world of birds with crested heads.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which Bird have a Crest on His Head?

Yes, many hummingbird species, including the Ruby-throated Hummingbird, undertake long migrations. They travel thousands of miles between their breeding grounds in North America and wintering grounds in Central America or Mexico.

Small birds with crested heads

Crested heads are a distinctive feature of various small birds. Examples include the Crested Tit, European Goldcrest, and Northern Cardinal, with its distinctive crest, among others, depending on the region and species.

Birds with Crests of North America

Birds with crests in North America include the Northern Cardinal, Blue Jay, and Tufted Puffin. These crests are distinctive features that vary in size, shape, and color among different bird species.

About Hammad Tariq

Hammad Tariq, the passionate founder and author of HappiestBeaks, is a dedicated bird enthusiast, caretaker, and lover. With a deep-seated affection for avian companions, he channels his expertise into crafting insightful and informative blogs on bird care and behavior.