13 Beautiful Red Birds in New Mexico [Images + IDs]

red birds in New Mexico

New Mexico is a state known for its stunning natural beauty, with diverse ecosystems that support a wide range of bird species. Among the many birds that call New Mexico home, the red bird stands out for its striking appearance and unique behaviors. These birds are known for their vibrant red plumage, distinctive songs, and fascinating mating rituals, and are a favorite among birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts. In this blog post, we’ll explore the world of red birds in New Mexico, from their preferred habitats and migratory patterns to the best locations for observing them in the wild. Whether you’re an avid birder or simply interested in learning more about the natural world, join us as we discover the fascinating world of red birds in New Mexico and gain a deeper appreciation for the state’s rich ecological diversity.

Types of Red Birds in New Mexico:

  1. Northern Cardinal
  2. House Finch
  3. Summer Tanager
  4. Scarlet Tanager
  5. Purple Finch
  6. Painted Bunting
  7. Red Crossbill
  8. Common Redpoll
  9. White-winged Crossbill
  10. Pine Grosbeak
  11. Cassin’s Finch
  12. Hepatic Tanager
  13. Pyrrhuloxia

Northern cardinals

birds with red breast

Image Source

  • Scientific name: Cardinalis cardinalis
  • Life span: Up to 15 years
  • Size: 21 cm (8.3 in)
  • Weight: 33-65 g
  • Origin: Eastern and Central North America

Male Northern Cardinals are distinguished by their distinctive red plumage, beak, and spiky mohawk-like hair. Northern cardinals are dimorphic birds, with both sexes being nearly totally distinct in color.

Females have red parts on their tails, and wings, and preserve the red beak, with the rest of their plumage being a pale brown.

In the wild, these birds typically live for 3 years, while some have been reported to survive for up to 15 years, which is an unusual lifespan for tiny birds like cardinals.

The majority of Northern cardinals may be found in southeast California, where they spend most of their time hunting and eating tiny insects, fruits, berries, and seeds in woodland borders, thickets, residential gardens, cities, and desert washes.

House finch

  • Scientific name: Haemorhous mexicanus
  • Life span: Up to 11 years
  • Size: 12-15 cm (4.7-5.9 in)
  • Weight: 16-27 g
  • Origin: North America

Male house finches have predominantly brown plumage with a red gradient running up from the breast to the face. Females are typically brown and white and are less colorful.

At altitudes below 6,000 feet, these little birds spend most of their time in the dry desert, desert grassland, chaparral, oak savannah, streamsides, and open coniferous woods. They may be found in these habitats mostly grazing on weed seeds, berries, various fruits, and tiny insects in order to stock up on protein.

House finches have a rather long lifetime in the wild, where they may survive for roughly ten years, while captive finches have been known to live for twelve years.

Scarlet tanager 

birds with red breast

Image Source

  • Scientific name: Piranga olivacea
  • Life span: Up to 10 years
  • Size: 18 cm (7.1 in)
  • Weight: 22-28 g
  • Origin: North, Central, and South America

The Scarlet Tanagers are stunning birds with eye-catching blood-red bodies and highly defined jet-black wings and tails that flash their magnificent plumage.
These songbirds live in deciduous woods and sit high in the forest canopy and mostly eat insects. They are difficult to see but their rich burrow songs may help in identifying them.
During the autumn, songbirds migrate to South America, changing their stunning red feathers into yellow-green ones.

Purple finch

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  • Scientific name: Haemorhous purpureus
  • Life span: Up to 7 years
  • Size: 14 cm (5.5 in)
  • Weight: 20-25 g
  • Origin: North America

The purple finch is a beautiful tiny bird renowned for its unusual appearance. Despite having the name “Purple Finch,” these adorable tiny birds really have a pinkish-red color. Similar to other bird species, the females lack the rosy red coloring, while the males are more flamboyant and show off their gorgeous colors.
These finches often live in coniferous woods, shrublands, and fields, where they nest and perch while singing their lyrical songs. They are uncommon in metropolitan centers because they prefer to remain far from the activities of the human population.

Summer tanager

Image Source

  • Scientific name: Piranga rubra
  • Life span: Up to 8 years
  • Size: 16 cm (6.3 in)
  • Weight: 22-27 g
  • Origin: North, Central, and South America

Male summer tanagers are almost all red, with a gray/silver beak. Females, on the other hand, are nearly all yellow, making these birds as dimorphic as they get. Summer tanagers spend most of their time in the gaps and borders of open deciduous or pine-oak woods.

While on the move, these red birds will chase insects such as wasps, bees, and caterpillars, as well as consume fruits, tiny berries, and rare seeds.

Tanagers live for around 5 years in the wild, which is about average for other wild birds, while captive summer tanagers are likely to live longer, similar to most other birds.

Red crossbill

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  • Scientific name: Loxia curvirostra
  • Life span: Up to 10 years
  • Size: 15 cm (5.9 in)
  • Weight: 26-39 g
  • Origin: North America and Europe

Red Crossbills are recognizable by their reddish-orange feathers with grey wing feathers and beaks that tend to cross over one another as their name crossbill implies. Females, like summer tanagers, have a richer golden color with grey parts blended throughout.

Because of their urge and need to eat pine seeds, these crossbills spend most of their time in coniferous woods. Red crossbills may be found as long as there are pine trees around. This is why some of these birds may be found in heathlands.

Red crossbills eat spruce, pine, Douglas-fir, hemlock, larch, and tiny insects throughout their rather lengthy lives of 8+ years in the wild.

Painted bunting

  • Scientific name: Passerina ciris
  • Life span: Up to 8 years
  • Size: 11-13 cm (4.3-5.1 in)
  • Weight: 12-17 g
  • Origin: North America

With stunning blue, red, green, and yellow feathers, the Painted Bunting is one of the most colorful and spectacular kinds of birds, and it is a sight to see.
The Buntings, which are members of the Cardinal family, have a striking combination of colors, with vivid red feathers identifying the lower body. The females, on the other hand, are fully covered in green fur.
The brilliant songbirds often live in the woods and woodlands. They graze in swarms and sing lovely wandering melodies together. These birds are very social.
Pay attention to the metallic chip sounds if you’re attempting to locate these birds in the jungle.

White-winged Crossbill

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  • Scientific name: Loxia leucoptera
  • Life span: Up to 4 years
  • Size: 5.9-6.7 in (15-17 cm)
  • Weight: 29 g
  • Origin: Northern parts of the United States

White-winged Crossbill finches have long, crossed beaks. Males have red wings and tails, as well as two white wing bars. Females have two white wing bands and are yellow and brown.

White-winged When cone harvests are weak farther north, Crossbills reside in woods in Canada, Alaska, and possibly northern US states. They may be seen munching on seeds in spruce woods.

Unlike other birds, these birds may reproduce at any time of year as long as there is adequate food. They often heard in big groups.

Common Redpolls

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  • Scientific name: Acanthis flammea
  • Life span: 2 to 3 years
  • Size: 4.5 and 5.5 in
  • Weight: 12 and 16 grams
  • Origin: southern Canada and the northern states

These common redpolls are distinguished by their red, white, and brown plumage, which includes a red and white forehead and breast, as well as brown and white wings. Females have a little patch on their forehead as well, but the rest of their body is brown and white.

A common redpoll may be found in boreal woods of pines, spruces, and larches.

These birds consume seeds from birch, alder, and spruce trees, as well as a variety of tiny invertebrates such as caterpillars, beetles, flies, and so on.

The highest lifespan for a redpoll was roughly 7 years and 10 months, however, the majority of redpolls spend far shorter lives, between 4 and 5 years.

Pine Grosbeak

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  • Scientific name: Pinicola enucleator
  • Life span: Up to 10 years
  • Size: 22-24 cm (8.7-9.4 in)
  • Weight: 40-80 g
  • Origin: Northern North America and Eurasia

Pine Grosbeaks are distinguished by their greyish-white wings and tail feathers, red body and head, and black beak and feet. Female grosbeaks are not nearly as colorful as males, having plumage that is mostly light grey with touches of orange around the body and tail.

Pine Grosbeaks spend most of their time in coniferous woodlands, where they may rest on a horizontal branch to hunt tiny insects, seeds, buds, berries, and other refreshing foods.

These birds have been observed to survive up to 9 years old, sometimes even longer, indicating that they have reasonably lengthy lifespans for birds of their size.

Cassin’s finch

birds with red breast

Image Source

  • Scientific name: Haemorhous cassinii
  • Life span: Up to 8 years
  • Size: 15 cm (5.9 in)
  • Weight: 19-23 g
  • Origin: North America

The Cassin’s Finch, a small little bird found in hilly areas, is a beautiful sight. These birds migrate to lower altitudes during the winter.
These finches, which are less common and noticeable than their others, have a reddish concentration on the head that fades to a rose pink color on the breast. The mountain dweller is also recognized by its longer conical beak, more elongated head, and subtle brownish streaks on the sides.
These chirpy finches travel in small groups, searching for seeds on the ground, perching on tall evergreen trees, and eating in aspen groves. Their joyous songs create a delightful atmosphere in the surroundings, sometimes in combination with other birds.

Hepatic tanager

Image Source

  • Scientific name: Piranga flava
  • Life span: Up to 7 years
  • Size: 18 cm (7.1 in)
  • Weight: 25-31 g
  • Origin: Western North America and Central America

The dark blood-red feathers, silver/gray beaks, and grey feet distinguish hepatic tanagers. Females are yellow, similar to summer tanagers. These birds mostly consume insects such as spiders, seeds, berries, and fruits.

These red birds may be found in open pine forests, especially in mixed pine-oak woodlands at higher altitudes.

Hepatic tanagers, like their summer counterparts, survive for around 5 years in the wild but may live for up to 11.9 years if they adapt well to their surroundings.

Pyrrhuloxia 

birds with red breast

Image Source

  • Scientific name: Cardinalis sinuatus
  • Life span: Up to 10 years
  • Size: 20-23 cm (7.9-9.1 in)
  • Weight: 42-50 g
  • Origin: Southwestern United States and Mexico

The Pyrrhuloxia is a member of the Cardinal family, often known as Desert Cardinals, and lives in the sweltering deserts of Southwest America.

With its spruce grey and red feathers, this bird appears just as stylish even if it does not have fully red plumage like the cardinal. It may be distinguished from northern cardinals by its robust yellow beak and taller, more beautiful crest of feathers.

These musical desert birds are strong because of the hard climate and become more aggressive during the mating season. However, during the winter, when they congregate in big flocks, sometimes numbering up to 1,000, they become highly social, setting aside their differences.

Conclusion:

New Mexico is home to a diverse range of red birds, including the  Pyrrhuloxia, and Northern Cardinal. These birds can be spotted in various habitats throughout the state, from desert regions to mountainous areas. Birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts can enjoy observing these beautiful and unique species in the wild.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What types of red birds can be found in New Mexico?

New Mexico is home to several species of red birds, including the Vermilion Flycatcher, Pyrrhuloxia, and Northern Cardinal.

Where can I go birdwatching in New Mexico?

There are many great places for birdwatching in New Mexico, including the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, the Gila National Forest, and the Santa Fe National Forest.

When is the best time to go birdwatching in New Mexico?

The best time for birdwatching in New Mexico is typically in the spring and fall when migratory birds are passing through the state.

What habitats do red birds in New Mexico prefer?

Redbirds in New Mexico can be found in a variety of habitats, including desert regions, mountainous areas, and riparian habitats.

Are there any endangered red birds in New Mexico? Yes, the Yellow-billed Cuckoo is a red bird species that are listed as endangered in New Mexico. It can be found in riparian habitats along rivers and streams in the state.

I'm Nauman Afridi, the bird enthusiast behind Birdsology.com. My lifelong passion for birds has led me to create a space where fellow bird lovers can find valuable insights and tips on caring for our feathered friends.Professionally, I'm a brand strategist and digital marketing consultant, bringing a unique perspective to the world of bird care. Whether you're a novice or an experienced bird owner, Birdsology.com is designed to be a welcoming community for all.Feel free to explore, and reach out if you have any questions or just want to chat about birds.
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