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Ruby-crowned Kinglet by Mircea Costina/Shutterstock

Little King:
Ruby-crowned Kinglet  

One of North America’s smallest songbirds, the Ruby-crowned Kinglet is tinier than a Black-capped Chickadee and only a bit larger than a Ruby-throated Hummingbird. Unremarkable at first glance, this diminutive bird is a drab olive-green and gray, with a white eye ring and wing bars. But a closer look reveals that this flitty songbird is anything but boring.

Its genus, Regulus, means "little king" in Latin. True to its name, when the male kinglet is excited or agitated, he raises his scarlet "crown." Females lack the red crest but otherwise look identical to males.

This feisty bird is a bundle of energy, with a particular characteristic that makes it easy to identify, even without binoculars. How can you spot a Ruby-crowned Kinglet at a quick glance?

Ruby-crowned Kinglet Facts
Ruby-crowned Kinglet gif
Ruby-crowned Kinglet Audio Preview

More Birds

Black-capped Chickadee by Owen Deutsch

Brainy Bird:
Black-capped Chickadee

Golden-crowned Kinglet by Paul Reeves Photography/Shutterstock

Winter King:
Golden-crowned Kinglet

Wilson's Warbler by Greg Lavaty

Capped Dynamo:
Wilson's Warbler

Carolina Wren by Archaeopteryx Tours/Shutterstock

Suburban Songster:
Carolina Wren

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American Bird Conservancy

P.O. Box 249
The Plains, Virginia 20198
(540) 253-5780