Birds of Manitoba

Beautiful Birds of Manitoba

Manitoba is an amazing and unique ecosystem covering almost 650 square kilometers of area. Many areas are still pristine in nature and offer an excellent resource for our nation's aviary friends to live and thrive. While many sites have extensive resources of the various aviary friends we have living here, I wanted to highlight the many birds I have seen on extensive bird watching tours for individuals who maybe interested in amateur ornithology. Many sites list a variety of birds of which I have never seen in my travels around our province, and wouldn’t expect visitors to catch a glimpse of either.

These birds below appear to be more common.


Connecticut Warbler

The nineteenth century ornithologist, Alexander Wilson, named the bird for Connecticut because that's where he saw it first, probably during migration. In spite of its name, the bird is not a native or a frequent visitor to the state of Connecticut and prefers central Canada, particularly Manitoba, and the Great Lakes regions.Due to its small size (up to 6”), secretive nature and decreasing population, the bird is rarely seen, except by observers who know where to look for it. In Manitoba, the connecticut warbler’s nests are typically situated on the ground, well-hidden in moss and grass, typically near fresh water supplies.A recent study published in the journal Ecology revealed that each year the bird undertakes a impressive journey from Manitoba, over the Atlantic ocean, to its wintering grounds in the Amazon each year. The study indicated that these small birds fly for at least 48 hours straight, making only a few stops, typically on the rugged western side of Haiti.

Great Grey Owl

Great Grey Owl

The great grey owl is a very large owl, the largest owl in North America, and one of the largest in the world. It is distributed across the Northern Hemisphere, and it is the only species in the Strix genus found in both Eastern and Western Hemispheres. The Great Gray Owl was officially adopted by Manitoba as the provincial bird emblem on July 16, 1987. It can currently be found throughout the mixed wood and coniferous forest of Manitoba.

Harris Sparrow

Harris’ Sparrow

The Harris’ sparrow is North America’s largest sparrow and the only songbird that only breeds in Canada and nowhere else in the world. Due to its shy nature, the species wasn’t described until 1931 by George M. Sutton, a famous ornithologist, who found its first nest in Churchill, Manitoba. The bird primarily nests in north-central Canada and winters mainly on the southern Great Plains.

Ring Necked Pheasant

Ring-Necked Pheasant

Introduced to North America and several other parts of the world from Asia in the 1880s, ring-necked pheasants thrived until recently. The game bird typically lives in any semi-open habitat and is usually seen around farms, fields, marsh edges and brush. Proximity to water such as around marshes is also important.

Smiths Longspur

Smith’s Longspur

The Smith’s longspur is another rather mysterious bird. Smith's Longspurs breeds in Northern Canada, Manitoba and Alaska, usually in open field areas with short grass where the birds can hide. The species spends the winter on the southern Great Plains.

The species have one of the most unusual social breeding systems known among the songbird species. The Smith's Longspur is polygynandrous—both females and males have two or three mates for a single clutch of eggs. The males guard females the females and help in raising the offspring, which often contain chicks of mixed paternity.


Ross’ Gull

While this small, rare gull belongs to the regions of the Arctic, Greenland and Siberia, it can also be spotted in Churchill, Manitoba. The discovery of it nesting in Churchill draws birders from around the world. It’s breeding sites in the Akudlik area near Churchill include hummocks covered with grasses, lichens, and dwarf willows; low-lying areas of grasses and sedges with small pools; and some shallow lakes.



Along both seacoasts, Willets inhabit open beaches, bayshores, marshes, mudflats, and rocky coastal zones. Their widespread wintering range makes them one of the easiest shorebirds to spot.

The willet can be spotted in several locations in Canada. In west Canada, the Willet breeds in central Alberta, southern Saskatchewan and Manitoba, as well as in parts of the U.S. west. In the eastern part of the country, it breeds along the Maritimes coast and patchily along the U.S. Atlantic and Gulf coasts. Wintering areas include coasts from California and Virginia south to Chile and northern Brazil.


Franklin’s Gull

During the breeding season, Franklin’s Gulls may be found across southern and central Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta, as well as the north-central United States. They breed in freshwater marshes or sloughs, and are often seen feeding in freshly plowed fields. They winter on the Gulf coast and the Pacific coast of South America.


Red-breasted Merganser

A large diving duck with a long thin bill, the Red-breasted Merganser is found in large lakes, rivers and the ocean. It prefers salt water more than the other two species of merganser. Pairs are formed in late winter, and until then one is likely to find flocks composed entirely of males or females. The species breed across Canada from eastern Alaska, Manitoba, and Newfoundland.

If you are a bird lover, like us, I’m sure you know that taking care of birds prolongs their lives. For domestic birds, that includes anything from the adequate cage to a nutritional diet. The process of finding an appropriate cage for large birds can be particularly challenging. Your bird’s cage needs to be large enough for your bird to be able to sit in it comfortably and spread its wings and the process of finding an appropriate cage for large birds can be particularly challenging. Large birds mean wide wingspans, and you want to be sure that your bird cage has room to allow for that. We are bird lovers too, and we particularly like cages for our macaw from this site that specializes in Bird Cages and really cares about the safety of the selection they carry.