Identifying various species of birds based on their beak color is a fun challenge. When it comes to black birds, the vast majority also have black beaks. Yet, orange beaks add a touch of color.
Whether you want to find out what black birds with orange beaks live across the globe or identify a species based on their beak color, check out the 22 gorgeous species below:
- Eurasian blackbird
- Black oystercatcher
- Hill myna
- Violet turaco
- Red-crested wood partridge
- Inca tern
- Wattled curassow
- Crested auklet
- Rhinoceros hornbill
- Toco toucan
- Greylag goose
- Black scoter
- Tufted puffin
- Black-and-gold cotinga
- Snail kite
- Common black hawk
- Black oropendola
- Dusky lory
- Regent bowerbird
- Great cormorant
- Black-headed nightingale thrush
- Seychelles bulbul
Note: This is not an exhaustive list, and the birds are not ranked in any particular order.
1. Eurasian Blackbird
Scientific name: Turdus merula
Endemic to Europe and Asia, the Eurasian blackbird is similar in size and looks like the common grackle. The main difference between the two is the orange beak on the Turdus.
Other identifying signs include an orange rim around the dark eyes and a fainter iridescence of the plumage, which looks velvety.
The Eurasian blackbird is a type of true thrush bird and is one of the black birds with orange beaks in North America, as a vagrant or introduced species.
2. Black Oystercatcher
Scientific name: Haematopus bachmani
One of the few true black birds with orange beaks in Alaska, the black oystercatcher is a seabird found on the shoreline of western North America.
Considered a sensitive indicator of the overall health of the rocky intertidal community, this mid-sized bird is highly vulnerable to natural and human disturbances.
In its undisturbed habitat, it feeds on small fish, clams, limpets, and mollusks, using its long orange beak to crack the shells or catch fish. The eyes are orange, too, contrasting with the black plumage.
3. Hill Myna
Scientific name: Gracula religiosa
This Asian black bird with an orange beak and yellow feet is commonly found in the tropical forests of India, Indochina, Southern China, and a handful of other Asiatic countries.
It is relatively large in size – about as large as an adult chicken – and it typically feeds on fruit and insects.
The common hill myna is easy to identify thanks to the glossy black plumage with a yellow mark on the neck and white patches on the wings.
The legs and feet are black, while the beak is a deep orange that fades to yellow at the tip.
The southern hill myna, which is a common hill myna variety, is slightly smaller and has yellow-orange feet and neck markings.
4. Violet Turaco
Scientific name: Musophaga violacea
The violet turaco is one of the most beautiful blue and black birds with orange beaks in western Africa.
As its name suggests, this bird is largely violet. The purple plumage is mixed with black, especially on the underside and chin and neck areas.
A red cap and white markings under each eye complete the colorful patterns. This bird has black feet, while the beak is yellow at the base and orange at the tip.
5. Red-Crested Wood Partridge
Scientific name: Rollulus rouloul
A vulnerable species, according to the IUCN, the red-crested wood partridge is a relatively small black bird with an orange beak in the pheasant family.
It is found in the tropical forests of Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Myanmar, and it comes in a variety of colors, depending on the melanin concentration in each bird.
Typically, males are black-blue, while females have green or greenish-black plumage. Both sexes have black-orange beaks, orange markings around the eyes, and orange to red crests.
6. Inca Tern
Scientific name: Larosterna Inca
Endemic to the coasts of Chile and Peru, the Inca tern is a uniquely-colored black bird with orange beak and feet.
This shoreline bird species has a majorly black or gray-black body and yellow and white feather tufts on each side of the beak that look like a mustache.
The bright orange beak creates a sharp contrast with the plumage, while the feet are the same orange as the beak.
Inca terns are dependent on the Humboldt Current that flows along South America’s western coast, but vagrant individuals can sometimes travel much further. In fact, an Inca tern was recorded and photographed in Hawaii.
7. Wattled Curassow
Scientific name: Crax globulosa
Another South American black bird with orange beak, the wattled curassow, is native to the Upper Amazonia, where it’s found in gallery forests.
The bird owes its name to the bright orange knobs and wattles on its bill. These knobs and wattles are actually responsible for the orange color, as the beak is actually black or dark gray.
More or less the size of a turkey, the wattled curassow is a globally threatened species. Wattle and knob color can vary from yellowish orange to scarlet red.
8. Crested Auklet
Scientific name: Aethia cristatella
Peculiar-looking crested auklets are small black seabirds with orange beaks commonly found in the northern Pacific area and the Bering Sea.
They usually live and fly in tightly packed flocks and feed by speed-diving in the deep waters and eating krill and small marine animals.
What makes this bird special, though, is its appearance.
Crested auklets are about the size of a passerine bird, but they have an upright posture and a sturdy orange bill. A tuft of feathers at the base of the bill is the bird’s most recognizable characteristic.
9. Rhinoceros Hornbill
Scientific name: Buceros rhinoceros
Remaining in the weird-looking territory, the rhinoceros hornbill is a large black bird with an orange beak that can steal the spotlight whenever it’s in sight.
Its characteristic trait is the bright orange horn – basically, a hollow structure made of keratin called a casque, whose role is to amplify the bird’s call. The rest of the bill is a yellowish-orange shade.
Rhinoceros hornbills have almost entirely black plumage with white patches on the lower half and the tail. The eyes are either red or blue.
10. Toco Toucan
Scientific name: Ramphastos toco
Famous for its bill that is about a third of the bird’s body length, toco toucans are tropical black birds with orange beaks native to the moist forests of South America.
The large, colorful bills are a characteristic of both male and female toucans. Their black plumage and white plate on the chest provide a beautiful contrast.
In their native range, toco toucans are regarded with a sacred eye by indigenous people. This black bird with orange beak’s spiritual meaning is that of a conduit between the world of the living and the realm of spirits.
11. Greylag Goose
Scientific name: Anser anser
An ancestor of domestic geese, greylag geese are common Eurasian representatives of black waterfowl with orange beaks.
They aren’t entirely black. In fact, as their name suggests, their plumage appears to be gray. In reality, it is a light gray on the head and neck that fades to black on the wings and back. The undersides and tail are whitish-gray.
Greylag geese have a pale orange beak. They typically nest in the temperate areas of Eurasia and winter in an expansive range that goes from Britain to North Africa.
12. Black Scoter
Scientific name: Melanitta nigra
One of the black seabirds with orange beaks in California during winter, the black scoters are gregarious birds. They often flock together with other scoter species, all of them feeding together on aquatic animals and mollusks.
Black scoter males are entirely black except for two light patches on the underside of the wings. They have a yellow beak at the base that darkens into orange towards the middle and black at the tip.
Females are duller, with an all-black bill and pale cheeks.
13. Tufted Puffin
Scientific name: Fratercula cirrhata
Also called the crested puffin, the tufted puffin is one of the most peculiar types of black birds with orange beaks.
One of the largest puffins, it is about the size of a pigeon. This bird spends most of its life bobbing around the cold waters of the ocean, even though the species has declined in recent years.
Breeding males are completely black except for two white patches stretching from the base of the beak around the eyes and to the forehead.
Long feather tufts over each eye fall overhead, while the bill and legs are matching orange shades.
Non-breeding males and females are typically entirely black, have no facial tufts, and their beaks and legs are a lighter color.
14. Black-and-Gold Cotinga
Scientific name: Tijuca atra
Possessor of a remarkable voice, the black-and-gold cotinga is one of the most beautiful black songbirds with orange beaks in the Americas.
Its territory is confined to a few forested mountain ranges in Brazil, but it is known for its unique group display by males during breeding.
The bird has a majestic appearance, being similar to blackbirds and robins. It has a velvet-black body with bright yellow patches on the wings. The beak is hot orange.
15. Snail Kite
Scientific name: Rostrhamus sociabilis
The snail kite is a bird of prey common to Eurasia. It is commonly found in freshwater marshes and wetlands, displaying a peculiar behavior for a raptor that is closely related to eagles and hawks.
In fact, instead of surveying the territory from above, the snail kite flies very low over bodies of water and feeds almost exclusively on freshwater snails – hence, their name.
Males are slate black in color with a white rump patch. They have dull orange beaks. Females are duller in color, typically a dark brown, but they also have a white rump patch.
Snail kites are native to Eurasia, but they are also found as an introduced species in North America. In the New World, they are one of the black birds with orange beaks in Florida.
16. Common Black Hawk
Scientific name: Buteogallus anthracinus
Another black bird of prey with orange beak native to the Old World is the common black hawk.
Much like the snail kite, the common black hawk has been introduced and established in the Americas. However, it is rare in the United States – though it is much more common in Mexico.
Common black hawks are also similar in behavior to the kite in that they perch over water bodies and drop down swiftly to catch fish or crayfish.
Appearance-wise, these hawks have slate black plumage with lighter patches on the wings and back. The tails are solid black with a white stripe at the base. Their beaks are yellow-orange.
17. Black Oropendola
Scientific name: Psarocolius guatimozinus
Native to South America, black oropendolas inhabit moist lowland forests in the tropical and subtropical areas of Colombia and Panama.
They are almost entirely black or black-brown, except for a yellow stripe on the tail and blue patches on the cheeks.
The beak is black at the base and yellow or orange at the tip. Black oropendolas are fairly common locally but some of the rarest black birds with orange beaks in the Americas.
18. Dusky Lory
Scientific name: Pseudeos fuscata
One of the most outstanding lory species and a common black and orange bird with an orange beak in New Guinea, dusky lories, are not only found in the wild; these parrots are also kept as pets and are bred in captivity worldwide.
These birds are essentially black, but they have colorful patches throughout. Color phases vary from yellow to orange, the stripes mixing with the black plumage. The beak is sturdy, curved, and bright orange in color.
In the wild, these lories are found in moist lowland forests in tropical and subtropical habitats, savannas, tropical mountain forests, and forested mangrove areas.
19. Regent Bowerbird
Scientific name: Sericulus chrysocephalus
The regent bowerbird is a small black and yellow bird with an orange beak native to Australia. It is typically found in rainforests, its range stretching to Queensland and New South Wales.
These passerine songbirds exhibit sexual dimorphism. Males are black and yellow, and they have yellow eyes and yellow-orange bills.
The females are mottled brown, displaying a scalloped pattern.
Both sexes display a few exceptional features, such as 11 to 14 secondary feathers – most songbirds have between nine and ten – and lacrimal bones, a trait seen in lyrebirds.
20. Great Cormorant
Scientific name: Phalacrocorax carbo
This cormorant type goes by different names, depending on the country or continent. No matter what you call it, nothing takes away the fact that it is one of the most widespread black birds with orange beaks in the world.
In North America, it is found near shallow bodies of water, typically in lakes or sheltered bays. This cormorant feeds almost exclusively on fish, marine worms, and small crustaceans.
Great cormorants are almost entirely black, with some brown on the upper parts and lighter on the chest. The beak is a deeper orange near the base that fades to almost white at the tip.
21. Black-Headed Nightingale-Thrush
Scientific name: Catharus mexicanus
Endemic to South America, the black-headed nightingale-thrush is typically considered an exotic songbird. However, evidence suggests that it is also one of the black birds with orange beaks in Texas, US.
Sure, its presence in the United States may be accidental and vagrant, yet nothing takes away the fact that this is a beautiful bird to come across.
The body is almost entirely black, but the feathers on the chest are duller and tend to be gray. However, the feet and beak are bright orange. Another splash of orange is present around the eyes of both males and females.
22. Seychelles Bulbul
Scientific name: Hypsipetes crassirostris
One of the few black birds with orange beaks in the Seychelles that is not threatened with becoming extinct, the Seychelles bulbul has almost black plumage and a shaggy dark black crest.
The beak and feet are orange in adults and dull brown in juveniles.
Body coloration can vary from bird to bird, depending on the melanin concentration. This factor makes some adults look greenish-brown, others dark gray, and some are slate black.
This passerine bird is usually found in woodlands and forests, and it feeds on fruits, insects, bird eggs, and small lizards.