A Big List of Beautiful Bird Picture Books for Children

by Josée

Birds, with their songs, flight and feather, fill children with awe. Perhaps it’s a robin collecting worms from dewy grass or the woodpecker tuk-tuk-tuking a nearby tree that first catch a child’s attention, but once caught a world of wonder is opened. Noticing birds doesn’t take any special skill or equipment but for young inquisitive minds that what to learn more about the secret lives of birds this list of beautiful bird picture books is a great place to start.

This big book list of beautiful bird picture is a compilation of well written and beautifully illustrated stories about birds for children from babies to about the age of twelve. There are both non-fiction and fiction picture books included in this list, along with books that celebrate diversity.

Did I miss you favourite bird-themed picture book? Let me know in the comment section below.

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A Nest Is Noisy by Dianna Hutts Aston (Author) and Sylvia Long (Illustrator)

From the same author as An Egg is Quiet, A Seed is Sleepy, A Butterfly is Patient, A Rock is Lively and A Beetle is Shy comes A Nest is Noisy. A book filled with interesting information about all sorts of nests.

Ages: 5 to 8

A Wild Child’s Book of Birds by Dara McAnulty (Author)

Dara McAnulty is the winner of the 2020 Wainwright Prize for his book Diary of a Young Naturalist and author of Wild Child! In A Wild Child’s Book of Birds McAnulty goes on a journey through a year in the life of birds. This book is packed with information about birds.

Ages: 8 to 12

Backpack Explorer: Bird Watch: What Will You Find? by Editors of Storey Publishing (Author) and Oana Befort (Illustrator)

This book covers the basics of birding and is packed with prompts and activities for discovering the world of birds.

Ages: 4 to 7

Backyard Birds: An Introduction by Robert Bateman (Author)

Robert Bateman is an internationally known wildlife artist and naturalist who has been painting birds since he was young. Bateman shares his passion for birds with young readers with this introductory birding book by looking at backyard birds..

Ages: 8 to 12

Birds by Carme Lemniscates (Author, Illustrator)

Birds come in many different shapes, colors and personalities. A simple book about different birds and their unique personalities for young children.

Ages: 2 to 5

Birds: Explore their extraordinary world by Miranda Krestovnikoff (Author)

A stunning book of birds illustrated and written in a similar style as Botanicum.

Ages: 7 to 9

Bird Builds a Nest: A First Science Storybook by Martin Jenkins (Author) and Richard Jones (Illustrator)

It’s a beautiful day. Bird is up early – she’s got a lot to do. Bird is going to build a nest! A simple book about a bird building a nest.

Ages: 4 to 7

Bird Boy by Matthew Burgess (Author) and Shahrzad Maydani (Illustrator)

Nico is nervous. He’s going to new school. Instead of trying to fit in, Nico does what he likes to do. He watches nature and is nicknamed “Bird Boy”. Soon other children join him and he makes friends. A lovely story about connection and nature.

Ages: 4 to 8

Bird Count by Susan Edwards Richmond (Author) and Stephanie Fizer Coleman (Illustrator)

A young girl and her mother take part in the Christmas Bird Count and become citizen scientists. This book delves into how to record and observe birds through a lovely story about counting birds.

Ages: 6 to 8

Bird Show by Susan Stockdale (Author, Illustrator)

A fashion show where birds display their unique feathers to rhyming text.

Ages: 3 to 7

Bird Watch by Christie Matheson (Author, Illustrator)

On a morning you just might find… Come along on a bird seek-and-find through delicate illustrations of nature.

Ages: 4 to 8

Birdsongs by Betsy Franco (Author), Steve Jenkins (Illustrator)

All is quiet, and then birds start making noise and singing songs all throughout the day. A fun book to learn about common bird songs.

Ages: 3 to 7

Counting Birds: The Idea That Helped Save Our Feathered Friends by Heidi E.Y. Stemple (Author) and Clover Robin (Illustrator)

Frank Chapman loved birds and worked in the National Museum Natural History in New York city. To help birds he came up with an idea. Instead of hunting birds on Christmas day, people could “count birds instead of kill them” in a reinvented “bird hunt”. This idea laid the foundation for the Audubon Christmas Bird Count that takes place all over the world to this day.

Ages: 3 to 7

Feathers: Not Just for Flying by Melissa Stewart (Author), Sarah S. Brannen (Illustrator)

Birds and feathers go together! Learn all about feathers and all the jobs feathers do.

Ages: 6 to 9

Fly! by Mark Teague (Author, Illustrator)

Mama bird thing baby bird is ready to fly, baby birds is not so sure. A funny wordless book that keeps kids guessing at what will happen next.

Ages: Baby to 8

Have You Heard the Nesting Bird? by Rita Gray (Author) and Kenard Pak (Illustrator)

Woodpecker calls from a tree with a hole. Starling sings from a metal pole. But have you heard the nesting bird? A rhyming story about birdcalls and the quiet bird that’s nesting.

Ages: 4 to 7

Hooray for Birds! by Lucy Cousins (Author, Illustrator)

Pretend you are a bird with this fun and colourful book by Lucy Cousins.

Ages: Babies to 4

How to Find a Bird by Jennifer Ward (Author) and Diana Sudyka (Illustrator)

To find a bird first you’ll want to blend in… and move slowly. Look up, look down, be quiet, shhh! A lovely book about how to find birds for children filled with lovely watercolour illustrations.

Ages: 4 to 8

Hummingbird by Nicola Davies (Author) and Jane Ray (Illustrator)

In Granny’s garden there are special visitors: hummingbirds. A richly illustrated book about hummingbirds with facts woven throughout.

Ages: 5 to 8

Is This Panama?: A Migration Story by Jan Thornhill (Author) and Soyeon Kim (Illustrator)

Fall is fast approaching. Sammy, a warbler, needs to begin his migration from the Arctic circle to Panama. A story about migration that is illustrated with colourful paper cutouts.

Ages: 5 to 8

Just Ducks! (Read and Wonder) by Nicola Davies (Author) and Salvatore Rubbino (Illustrator)

Quack quack! Every morning that’s the first sound a young girl hears when she wakes up. A book about mallard ducks that hang out on a city river.

Ages: 5 to 8

Lali’s Feather by Farhana Zia (Author) and Stephanie Fizer Coleman (Illustrator)

Lali found a feather in a field, but whose feather? Lali sets out to find out the owner of the feather and visits a variety of birds asking “is this your feather?”. When no bird claims the feather, Lali plays with the feather and discovers all the things the feather can do.

Ages: 4 to 8

Love Is by Diane Adams (Author) and Claire Keane (Illustrator)

A young girl cares for a duckling and discovers what love is. A lyrical story about caring, changing, remembering and letting go told in a gentle way with whimsical illustrations.

Ages: 2 to 6

Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey (Author)

Originally published in 1941, a classic story about Mr. and Mrs. Mallard settling in at Boston Public Gardens to raise their eight ducklings.

Ages: 4 to 7

Mama Built a Little Nest by Jennifer Ward (Author) and Steve Jenkins (Illustrator)

Mama built a little nest! A rhyming book about the different types of nests birds build for their nestlings.

Ages: 4 to 7

My Book of Birds by Geraldo Valério (Author)

A non-fiction book filled with beautiful bird illustrations and information about birds.

Ages: 5 to 10

Nest by Jorey Hurley (Author, Illustrator)

A simple word book about birds for babies and toddlers.

Ages: Babies to 4

Nesting by Henry Cole (Author, Illustrator)

It’s early spring and robins build a nest in a tree. The eggs hatch, and the robins work hard to feed the babies. Eventually the young robins fly away. Illustrated in black and white, and blue (the eggs)!

Ages: 4 to 8

Numenia and the Hurricane: Inspired by a True Migration Story by Fiona Halliday

Inspired by a true story of a whimbrel that got separated from her sisters in a giant storm and her epic flight to find them. Poetic, dramatic and beautifully illustrated.

Ages: 4 to 8

Odd Birds: Meet Nature’s Weirdest Flock by Laura Gehl (Author) and Gareth Lucas (Illustrator)

A simple book about odd birds for young readers that’s colourful and funny.

Ages: Babies to 4

On Duck Pond by Jane Yolen (Author) and Bob Marstall (Illustrator)

A rhyming story about the going ons at duck pond.

Ages: 3 to 6

One Dark Bird by Liz Garton Scanlon (Author) and Frann Preston-Gannon (Illustrator)

One dark bird is perched up high, with a view of the town and a taste of the sky. Then she’s joined by two more, then three, then four. A beautifully illustrated book of hundred of starling dancing in the sky.

Ages: 3 to 8

Pale Male: Citizen Hawk of New York City by Janet Schulman (Author) and Meilo So (Illustrator)

Based on a true story of a hawk in New York city. This book is my eldest son’s favourite book about birds.

Ages: 5 to 8

Peggy: A Brave Chicken on a Big Adventure by Anna Walker (Author, Illustrator)

Peggy lives in a small house on a quiet street. Every day Peggy played in her yard, but one blustery day Peggy blew away into the city where she goes on an adventure.

Ages: 4 to 7

Raven: A Trickster Tale from the Pacific Northwest by Gerald McDermott

Raven saw that the world was dark, so he flew in search of light. He found light at the Sky Chief’s home and came up with a plan to steal the light. A story based on the traditions of the Pacific Coast Indian.

Ages: 4 to 6

Ruby’s Birds by Mya Thompson (Author), Claudia Dávila (Illustrator)

Ruby goes to the park with her neighbour and who helps her discover the world of birds. Ruby is hooked! Ruby starts dreaming about birds, thinking about birds and seeing birds.

Ages: 5 to 7

The Beak Book by Robin Page (Author, Illustrator)

Bird beaks come and many shapes and sizes. This book explores the wide and wonderful world of beaks.

Ages: 3 to 8

The Big Book of Birds by Yuval Zommer (Author)

A big book all about birds!

Ages: 6 to 8

The Boy Who Drew Birds: A Story of John James by Jacqueline Davies (Author) and Melissa Sweet (Illustrator)

John James Audubon loved to watch and draw birds. He was curious about where bird went in the fall and came up with a plan to find out where they went. Through his observation of birds, Audubon discovered that small birds migrate and noticed migration patterns.

Ages: 4 to 7

The Little Book of Woodland Bird Songs by Andrea Pinnington (Author) and Caz Buckingham (Author)

A book that helps young children listen and learn about twelve of North America’s woodland birds.

Ages: 2 to 5

The Extraordinary World of Birds by David Lindo (Author) and Claire McElfatrick (Illustrator)

A book that helps young children listen and learn about twelve of North America’s woodland birds.

Ages: 7 to 9

The Mountain That Loved a Bird by Alice McLerran (Author) and Eric Carle (Illustrator)

Originally published in 1993, The Mountain that Loved a Bird is a heartwarming story about how a bird brings a mountain to life. Less known and longer than many of Eric Carle’s other books, this story has been much loved by my own children.

Ages: 5 to 8

The Nest That Wren Built by Randi Sonenshine (Author) and Anne Hunter (Illustrator)

A lyrical rhyming poem about a nest being built by wren.

Ages: 4 to 8

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