List of birds of North Korea
This is a list of the bird species recorded in North Korea. The avifauna of North Korea include a total of 318 species, none of which are introduced, accidental or endemic. One species listed is extirpated in North Korea and is not included in the species count.
This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 6th edition. The family accounts at the beginning of each heading reflect this taxonomy, as do the species counts found in each family account.
The following tag has been used to highlight extirpated species. The commonly occurring native species are untagged.
- (Ex) Extirpated - a species that no longer occurs in North Korea although populations exist elsewhere
- 1 Loons
- 2 Grebes
- 3 Shearwaters and petrels
- 4 Northern storm petrels
- 5 Cormorants
- 6 Frigatebirds
- 7 Bitterns, herons and egrets
- 8 Ibises and spoonbills
- 9 Storks
- 10 Ducks, geese and swans
- 11 Osprey
- 12 Hawks, kites and eagles
- 13 Caracaras and falcons
- 14 Pheasants and partridges
- 15 Cranes
- 16 Rails, crakes, gallinules and coots
- 17 Bustards
- 18 Buttonquails
- 19 Oystercatchers
- 20 Plovers and lapwings
- 21 Sandpipers and allies
- 22 Gulls, terns, and skimmers
- 23 Auks, murres and puffins
- 24 Pigeons and doves
- 25 Cuckoos and anis
- 26 Typical owls
- 27 Nightjars
- 28 Swifts
- 29 Kingfishers
- 30 Typical rollers
- 31 Hoopoes
- 32 Woodpeckers and allies
- 33 Pittas
- 34 Larks
- 35 Swallows and martins
- 36 Wagtails and pipits
- 37 Cuckooshrikes
- 38 Bulbuls
- 39 Kinglets
- 40 Waxwings
- 41 Dippers
- 42 Wrens
- 43 Accentors
- 44 Thrushes and allies
- 45 Bush warblers and allies
- 46 Locustellid warblers
- 47 Acrocephalid warblers
- 48 Phylloscopid warblers
- 49 Sylviid warblers, parrotbills, and allies
- 50 Old World flycatchers
- 51 Monarch flycatchers
- 52 Long-tailed tits
- 53 Chickadees and titmice
- 54 Nuthatches
- 55 Treecreepers
- 56 Penduline tits
- 57 White-eyes
- 58 Old World orioles
- 59 Shrikes
- 60 Crows, jays, ravens and magpies
- 61 Starlings
- 62 Longspurs and arctic buntings
- 63 Old World buntings
- 64 Finches, euphonias, and allies
- 65 Old World sparrows
- 66 See also
- 67 References
Loons, known as divers in Europe, are a group of aquatic birds found in many parts of North America and northern Europe. They are the size of a large duck or small goose, which they somewhat resemble when swimming, but to which they are completely unrelated. There are 5 species worldwide and 4 species which occur in North Korea.
- Red-throated loon, Gavia stellata
- Arctic loon, Gavia arctica
- Pacific loon, Gavia pacifica
- Yellow-billed loon, Gavia adamsii
Grebes are small to medium-large freshwater diving birds. They have lobed toes and are excellent swimmers and divers. However, they have their feet placed far back on the body, making them quite ungainly on land. There are 20 species worldwide and 4 species which occur in North Korea.
- Little grebe, Tachybaptus ruficollis
- Red-necked grebe, Podiceps grisegena
- Great crested grebe, Podiceps cristatus
- Eared grebe, Podiceps nigricollis
Shearwaters and petrels
The procellariids are the main group of medium-sized "true petrels", characterised by united nostrils with medium septum and a long outer functional primary.
Northern storm petrels
The northern storm petrels are relatives of the petrels and are the smallest seabirds. They feed on planktonic crustaceans and small fish picked from the surface, typically while hovering. The flight is fluttering and sometimes bat-like.
- Swinhoe's storm petrel, Oceanodroma monorhis
Phalacrocoracidae is a family of medium to large coastal, fish-eating seabirds that includes cormorants and shags. Plumage colouration varies, with the majority having mainly dark plumage, some species being black-and-white and a few being colourful.
- Great cormorant, Phalacrocorax carbo
- Japanese cormorant, Phalacrocorax capillatus
- Pelagic cormorant, Phalacrocorax pelagicus
Frigatebirds are large seabirds usually found over tropical oceans. They are large, black-and-white or completely black, with long wings and deeply forked tails. The males have coloured inflatable throat pouches. They do not swim or walk and cannot take off from a flat surface. Having the largest wingspan-to-body-weight ratio of any bird, they are essentially aerial, able to stay aloft for more than a week. There are 5 species worldwide and 1 species which occurs in North Korea.
- Lesser frigatebird, Fregata ariel
Bitterns, herons and egrets
The family Ardeidae contains the bitterns, herons and egrets. Herons and egrets are medium to large wading birds with long necks and legs. Bitterns tend to be shorter necked and more wary. Members of Ardeidae fly with their necks retracted, unlike other long-necked birds such as storks, ibises and spoonbills.
- Grey heron, Ardea cinerea
- Purple heron, Ardea purpurea
- Eastern great egret, Ardea alba modesta
- Intermediate egret, Ardea intermedia
- Little egret, Egretta garzetta
- Chinese egret, Egretta eulophotes
- Cattle egret, Bubulcus ibis
- Striated heron, Butorides striata
- Yellow bittern, Ixobrychus sinensis
- Schrenck's bittern, Ixobrychus eurhythmus
Ibises and spoonbills
Threskiornithidae is a family of large terrestrial and wading birds which includes the ibises and spoonbills. They have long, broad wings with 11 primary and about 20 secondary feathers. They are strong fliers and despite their size and weight, very capable soarers.
- Crested ibis, Nipponia nippon (Ex)
- Eurasian spoonbill, Platalea leucorodia
- Black-faced spoonbill, Platalea minor
Storks are large, long-legged, long-necked, wading birds with long, stout bills. Storks are mute, but bill-clattering is an important mode of communication at the nest. Their nests can be large and may be reused for many years. Many species are migratory.
Ducks, geese and swans
Anatidae includes the ducks and most duck-like waterfowl, such as geese and swans. These birds are adapted to an aquatic existence with webbed feet, flattened bills, and feathers that are excellent at shedding water due to an oily coating.
- Whooper swan, Cygnus cygnus
- Tundra swan, Cygnus columbianus
- Swan goose, Anser cygnoides
- Bean goose, Anser fabalis
- Greater white-fronted goose, Anser albifrons
- Snow goose, Anser caerulescens
- Brant, Branta bernicla
- Ruddy shelduck, Tadorna ferruginea
- Common shelduck, Tadorna tadorna
- Mandarin duck, Aix galericulata
- Eurasian wigeon, Mareca penelope
- Falcated duck, Mareca falcata
- Baikal teal, Sibirionetta formosa
- Eurasian teal, Anas crecca
- Mallard, Anas platyrhynchos
- Spot-billed duck, Anas poecilorhyncha
- Northern pintail, Anas acuta
- Garganey, Spatula querquedula
- Northern shoveler, Spatula clypeata
- Baer's pochard, Aythya baeri
- Tufted duck, Aythya fuligula
- Greater scaup, Aythya marila
- Lesser scaup, Aythya affinis
- Harlequin duck, Histrionicus histrionicus
- Long-tailed duck, Clangula hyemalis
- Black scoter, Melanitta americana
- Stejneger's scoter, Melanitta stejnegeri
- Velvet scoter, Melanitta fusca
- Common goldeneye, Bucephala clangula
- Smew, Mergellus albellus
- Red-breasted merganser, Mergus serrator
- Common merganser, Mergus merganser
- Scaly-sided merganser, Mergus squamatus
The family Pandionidae contains only one species, the osprey. The osprey is a medium-large raptor which is a specialist fish-eater with a worldwide distribution.
- Osprey, Pandion haliaetus
Hawks, kites and eagles
Accipitridae is a family of birds of prey, which includes hawks, eagles, kites, harriers and Old World vultures. These birds have powerful hooked beaks for tearing flesh from their prey, strong legs, powerful talons and keen eyesight.
- Crested honey buzzard, Pernis ptilorhynchus
- Black kite, Milvus migrans
- White-tailed eagle, Haliaeetus albicilla
- Steller's sea-eagle, Haliaeetus pelagicus
- Lammergeier, Gypaetus barbatus
- Cinereous vulture, Aegypius monachus
- Eastern marsh-harrier, Circus spilonotus
- Hen harrier, Circus cyaneus
- Pied harrier, Circus melanoleucos
- Chinese goshawk, Accipiter soloensis
- Japanese sparrowhawk, Accipiter gularis
- Eurasian sparrowhawk, Accipiter nisus
- Northern goshawk, Accipiter gentilis
- Grey-faced buzzard, Butastur indicus
- Eastern buzzard, Buteo japonicus
- Upland buzzard, Buteo hemilasius
- Rough-legged hawk, Buteo lagopus
- Greater spotted eagle, Clanga clanga
- Steppe eagle, Aquila nipalensis
- Imperial eagle, Aquila heliaca
- Golden eagle, Aquila chrysaetos
Caracaras and falcons
Falconidae is a family of diurnal birds of prey. They differ from hawks, eagles and kites in that they kill with their beaks instead of their talons. There are 62 species worldwide and 5 species which occur in North Korea.
- Eurasian kestrel, Falco tinnunculus
- Amur falcon, Falco amurensis
- Merlin, Falco columbarius
- Eurasian hobby, Falco subbuteo
- Peregrine falcon, Falco peregrinus
Pheasants and partridges
The Phasianidae are a family of terrestrial birds. In general, they are plump (although they vary in size) and have broad, relatively short wings. There are 156 species worldwide and 2 species which occur in North Korea.
- Japanese quail, Coturnix japonica
- Ring-necked pheasant, Phasianus colchicus
- Black grouse, Tetrao tetrix
- Hazel grouse, Bonasa bonasia
Cranes are large, long-legged and long-necked birds. Unlike the similar-looking but unrelated herons, cranes fly with necks outstretched, not pulled back. Most have elaborate and noisy courting displays or "dances". There are 15 species worldwide and 4 species which occur in North Korea.
- White-naped crane, Grus vipio
- Common crane, Grus grus
- Hooded crane, Grus monacha
- Red-crowned crane, Grus japonensis
Rails, crakes, gallinules and coots
Rallidae is a large family of small to medium-sized birds which includes the rails, crakes, coots and gallinules. Typically they inhabit dense vegetation in damp environments near lakes, swamps or rivers. In general they are shy and secretive birds, making them difficult to observe. Most species have strong legs and long toes which are well adapted to soft uneven surfaces. They tend to have short, rounded wings and to be weak fliers.
- Swinhoe's rail, Coturnicops exquisitus
- Brown-cheeked rail, Rallus indicus
- Baillon's crake, Porzana pusilla
- Ruddy-breasted crake, Porzana fusca
- Band-bellied crake, Porzana paykullii
- Watercock, Gallicrex cinerea
- Common moorhen, Gallinula chloropus
- Eurasian coot, Fulica atra
Bustards are large terrestrial birds mainly associated with dry open country and steppes in the Old World. They are omnivorous and nest on the ground. They walk steadily on strong legs and big toes, pecking for food as they go. They have long broad wings with "fingered" wingtips and striking patterns in flight. Many have interesting mating displays. There are 26 species worldwide and 1 species which occurs in North Korea.
- Great bustard, Otis tarda
The buttonquails are small, drab, running birds which resemble the true quails. The female is the brighter of the sexes and initiates courtship. The male incubates the eggs and tends the young.
- Yellow-legged buttonquail, Turnix tanki
- Eurasian oystercatcher, Haematopus ostralegus
Plovers and lapwings
The family Charadriidae includes the plovers, dotterels and lapwings. They are small to medium-sized birds with compact bodies, short, thick necks and long, usually pointed, wings. They are found in open country worldwide, mostly in habitats near water. There are 66 species worldwide and 8 species which occur in North Korea.
- Northern lapwing, Vanellus vanellus
- Pacific golden-plover, Pluvialis fulva
- Black-bellied plover, Pluvialis squatarola
- Long-billed plover, Charadrius placidus
- Little ringed plover, Charadrius dubius
- Snowy plover, Charadrius alexandrinus
- Greater sandplover, Charadrius leschenaultii
- Oriental plover, Charadrius veredus
Sandpipers and allies
Scolopacidae is a large diverse family of small to medium-sized shorebirds including the sandpipers, curlews, godwits, shanks, tattlers, woodcocks, snipes, dowitchers and phalaropes. The majority of these species eat small invertebrates picked out of the mud or soil. Variation in length of legs and bills enables multiple species to feed in the same habitat, particularly on the coast, without direct competition for food. There are 22 species which have been recorded in North Korea.
- Eurasian woodcock, Scolopax rusticola
- Solitary snipe, Gallinago solitaria
- Common snipe, Gallinago gallinago
- Black-tailed godwit, Limosa limosa
- Little curlew, Numenius minutus
- Whimbrel, Numenius phaeopus
- Eurasian curlew, Numenius arquata
- Far Eastern curlew, Numenius madagascariensis
- Common redshank, Tringa totanus
- Common greenshank, Tringa nebularia
- Nordmann's greenshank, Tringa guttifer
- Green sandpiper, Tringa ochropus
- Wood sandpiper, Tringa glareola
- Terek sandpiper, Xenus cinereus
- Common sandpiper, Actitis hypoleucos
- Ruddy turnstone, Arenaria interpres
- Sanderling, Calidris alba
- Pectoral sandpiper, Calidris melanotos
- Sharp-tailed sandpiper, Calidris acuminata
- Curlew sandpiper, Calidris ferruginea
- Dunlin, Calidris alpina
- Spoon-billed sandpiper, Calidris pygmeus
Gulls, terns, and skimmers
Laridae is a family of medium to large seabirds, the gulls, terns, and skimmers. Gulls are typically grey or white, often with black markings on the head or wings. They have stout, longish bills and webbed feet. Terns are a group of generally medium to large seabirds typically with grey or white plumage, often with black markings on the head. Most terns hunt fish by diving but some pick insects off the surface of fresh water. Terns are generally long-lived birds, with several species known to live in excess of 30 years.
- Black-tailed gull, Larus crassirostris
- Common gull, Larus canus
- Black-headed gull, Chroicocephalus ridibundus
- Saunders's gull, Chroicocephalus saundersi
- Relict gull, Ichthyaetus relictus
- Common tern, Sterna hirundo
- Little tern, Sternula albifrons
- White-winged tern, Chlidonias leucopterus
Auks, murres and puffins
Alcids are superficially similar to penguins due to their black-and-white colours, their upright posture and some of their habits, however they are not related to the penguins and differ in being able to fly. Auks live on the open sea, only deliberately coming ashore to nest. There are 24 species worldwide and 6 species which occur in North Korea.
- Common murre, Uria aalge
- Spectacled guillemot, Cepphus carbo
- Long-billed murrelet, Brachyramphus perdix
- Ancient murrelet, Synthliboramphus antiquus
- Japanese murrelet, Synthliboramphus wumizusume
- Rhinoceros auklet, Cerorhinca monocerata
Pigeons and doves
- Rock pigeon, Columba livia
- Hill pigeon, Columba rupestris
- Oriental turtle dove, Streptopelia orientalis
- Eurasian collared-dove, Streptopelia decaocto
Cuckoos and anis
- Rufous hawk-cuckoo, Hierococcyx hyperythrus
- Common cuckoo, Cuculus canorus
- Oriental cuckoo, Cuculus optatus
- Lesser cuckoo, Cuculus poliocephalus
The typical owls are small to large solitary nocturnal birds of prey. They have large forward-facing eyes and ears, a hawk-like beak and a conspicuous circle of feathers around each eye called a facial disk.
- Japanese scops owl, Otus semitorques
- Oriental scops owl, Otus sunia
- Eurasian eagle-owl, Bubo bubo
- Snowy owl, Bubo scandiacus
- Himalayan owl, Strix nivicolum
- Ural owl, Strix uralensis
- Northern hawk-owl, Surnia ulula
- Little owl, Athene noctua
- Brown hawk-owl, Ninox scutulata
- Northern boobook, Ninox japonica
- Long-eared owl, Asio otus
- Short-eared owl, Asio flammeus
Nightjars are medium-sized nocturnal birds that usually nest on the ground. They have long wings, short legs and very short bills. Most have small feet, of little use for walking, and long pointed wings. Their soft plumage is camouflaged to resemble bark or leaves.
- Grey nightjar, Caprimulgus jotaka
Swifts are small birds which spend the majority of their lives flying. These birds have very short legs and never settle voluntarily on the ground, perching instead only on vertical surfaces. Many swifts have long swept-back wings which resemble a crescent or boomerang. There are 2 species which have been recorded in North Korea.
Kingfishers are medium-sized birds with large heads, long, pointed bills, short legs and stubby tails. There are 93 species worldwide and 4 species which occur in North Korea.
- Common kingfisher, Alcedo atthis
- Ruddy kingfisher, Halcyon coromanda
- Black-capped kingfisher, Halcyon pileata
- Crested kingfisher, Megaceryle lugubris
Rollers resemble crows in size and build, but are more closely related to the kingfishers and bee-eaters. They share the colourful appearance of those groups with blues and browns predominating. The two inner front toes are connected, but the outer toe is not. There are 12 species worldwide and 1 species which occurs in North Korea.
- Dollarbird, Eurystomus orientalis
Hoopoes have black, white and orangey-pink colouring with a large erectile crest on their head. There are 2 species worldwide and 1 species which occurs in North Korea.
- Hoopoe, Upupa epops
Woodpeckers and allies
Woodpeckers are small to medium-sized birds with chisel-like beaks, short legs, stiff tails and long tongues used for capturing insects. Some species have feet with two toes pointing forward and two backward, while several species have only three toes. Many woodpeckers have the habit of tapping noisily on tree trunks with their beaks.
- Eurasian wryneck, Jynx torquilla
- Grey-capped woodpecker, Yungipicus canicapillus
- Pygmy woodpecker, Yungipicus kizuki
- Lesser spotted woodpecker, Dryobates minor
- Rufous-bellied woodpecker, Dendrocopos hyperythrus
- White-backed woodpecker, Dendrocopos leucotos
- Great spotted woodpecker, Dendrocopos major
- Eurasian three-toed woodpecker, Picoides tridactylus
- White-bellied woodpecker, Dryocopus javensis
- Black woodpecker, Dryocopus martius
- Grey-faced woodpecker, Picus canus
Pittas are medium-sized by passerine standards and are stocky, with fairly long, strong legs, short tails and stout bills. Many are brightly coloured. They spend the majority of their time on wet forest floors, eating snails, insects and similar invertebrates. There are 32 species worldwide and 1 species which occurs in North Korea.
- Fairy pitta, Pitta nympha
Larks are small terrestrial birds with often extravagant songs and display flights. Most larks are fairly dull in appearance. Their food is insects and seeds.
- Crested lark, Galerida cristata
- Eurasian skylark, Alauda arvensis
- Asian short-toed lark, Alaudala cheleensis
Swallows and martins
The family Hirundinidae is adapted to aerial feeding. They have a slender streamlined body, long pointed wings and a short bill with a wide gape. The feet are adapted to perching rather than walking, and the front toes are partially joined at the base. There are 75 species worldwide and 5 species which occur in North Korea.
- Sand martin, Riparia riparia
- Barn swallow, Hirundo rustica
- Red-rumped swallow, Cecropis daurica
- Common house martin, Delichon urbicum
- Asian house martin, Delichon dasypus
Wagtails and pipits
Motacillidae is a family of small passerine birds with medium to long tails. They include the wagtails, longclaws and pipits. They are slender, ground feeding insectivores of open country. There are 54 species worldwide and 7 species which occur in North Korea.
- Forest wagtail, Dendronanthus indicus
- Black-backed wagtail, Motacilla lugens
- Japanese wagtail, Motacilla grandis
- Yellow wagtail, Motacilla flava
- Grey wagtail, Motacilla cinerea
- Olive-backed pipit, Anthus hodgsoni
- American pipit, Anthus rubescens
The cuckooshrikes are small to medium-sized passerine birds. They are predominantly greyish with white and black, although some species are brightly coloured. There are 82 species worldwide and 1 species which occurs in North Korea.
- Ashy minivet, Pericrocotus divaricatus
Bulbuls are medium-sized songbirds. Some are colourful with yellow, red or orange vents, cheeks, throats or supercilia, but most are drab, with uniform olive-brown to black plumage. Some species have distinct crests. There are 130 species worldwide and 1 species which occurs in North Korea.
- Brown-eared bulbul, Ixos amaurotis
The kinglets, also called crests, are a small group of birds often included in the Old World warblers, but frequently given family status because they also resemble the titmice. There are 7 species worldwide and 1 species which occurs in North Korea.
- Goldcrest, Regulus regulus
The waxwings are a group of birds with soft silky plumage and unique red tips to some of the wing feathers. In the Bohemian and cedar waxwings, these tips look like sealing wax and give the group its name. These are arboreal birds of northern forests. They live on insects in summer and berries in winter. There are 3 species worldwide and 2 species which occur in North Korea.
Dippers are a group of perching birds whose habitat includes aquatic environments in the Americas, Europe and Asia. They are named for their bobbing or dipping movements. There are 5 species worldwide and 1 species which occurs in North Korea.
- Brown dipper, Cinclus pallasii
The wrens are mainly small and inconspicuous except for their loud songs. These birds have short wings and thin down-turned bills. Several species often hold their tails upright. All are insectivorous. There are 80 species worldwide (of which all but one are New World species) and 1 species which occurs in North Korea.
- Eurasian wren, Troglodytes troglodytes
The accentors are in the only bird family, Prunellidae, which is completely endemic to the Palearctic. They are small, fairly drab species superficially similar to sparrows. There are 13 species worldwide and 2 species which occur in North Korea.
Thrushes and allies
The thrushes are a group of passerine birds that occur mainly in the Old World. They are plump, soft plumaged, small to medium-sized insectivores or sometimes omnivores, often feeding on the ground. Many have attractive songs.
- Siberian thrush, Geokichla sibirica
- Scaly thrush, Zoothera dauma
- Grey-backed thrush, Turdus hortulorum
- Japanese thrush, Turdus cardis
- Eyebrowed thrush, Turdus obscurus
- Pale thrush, Turdus pallidus
- Dusky thrush, Turdus naumanni
Bush warblers and allies
- Asian stubtail, Urosphena squameiceps
- Manchurian bush warbler, Horornis borealis
- Japanese bush warbler, Horornis diphone
- Lanceolated warbler, Locustella lanceolata
- Middendorff's grasshopper-warbler, Locustella ochotensis
- Pleske's warbler, Locustella pleskei
- Gray's warbler, Locustella fasciolata
- Marsh grassbird, Locustella pryeri
- Dusky warbler, Phylloscopus fuscatus
- Radde's warbler, Phylloscopus schwarzi
- Pallas's leaf warbler, Phylloscopus proregulus
- Yellow-browed warbler, Phylloscopus inornatus
- Arctic warbler, Phylloscopus borealis
- Greenish warbler, Phylloscopus trochiloides
- Pale-legged leaf warbler, Phylloscopus tenellipes
- Eastern crowned leaf warbler, Phylloscopus coronatus
Sylviid warblers, parrotbills, and allies
The family Sylviidae is a group of small insectivorous passerine birds. They mainly occur as breeding species, as the common name implies, in Europe, Asia and, to a lesser extent, Africa. Most are of generally undistinguished appearance, but many have distinctive songs.
Old World flycatchers
Old World flycatchers are a large group of small passerine birds native to the Old World. They are mainly small arboreal insectivores. The appearance of these birds is highly varied, but they mostly have weak songs and harsh calls.
- White-throated rock thrush, Monticola gularis
- Blue rock thrush, Monticola solitarius
- Grey-spotted flycatcher, Muscicapa griseisticta
- Siberian flycatcher, Muscicapa sibirica
- Asian brown flycatcher, Muscicapa dauurica
- Yellow-rumped flycatcher, Ficedula zanthopygia
- Narcissus flycatcher, Ficedula narcissina
- Mugimaki flycatcher, Ficedula mugimaki
- Taiga flycatcher, Ficedula albicilla
- Blue-and-white flycatcher, Cyanoptila cyanomelana
- Rufous-tailed robin, Luscinia sibilans
- Siberian blue robin, Luscinia cyane
- Siberian rubythroat, Calliope calliope
- Red-flanked bluetail, Tarsiger cyanurus
- Daurian redstart, Phoenicurus auroreus
- Siberian stonechat, Saxicola maurus
The monarch flycatchers are small to medium-sized insectivorous passerines which hunt by flycatching.
Long-tailed tits are a group of small passerine birds with medium to long tails. They make woven bag nests in trees. Most eat a mixed diet which includes insects.
- Long-tailed tit, Aegithalos caudatus
Chickadees and titmice
The Paridae are mainly small stocky woodland species with short stout bills. Some have crests. They are adaptable birds, with a mixed diet including seeds and insects.
- Marsh tit, Poecile palustris
- Willow tit, Poecile montana
- Coal tit, Periparus ater
- Japanese tit, Parus minor
- Varied tit, Sittiparus varius
Nuthatches are small woodland birds. They have the unusual ability to climb down trees head first, unlike other birds which can only go upwards. Nuthatches have big heads, short tails and powerful bills and feet. There are 24 species worldwide and 2 species which occur in North Korea.
Treecreepers are small woodland birds, brown above and white below. They have thin pointed down-curved bills, which they use to extricate insects from bark. They have stiff tail feathers, like woodpeckers, which they use to support themselves on vertical trees. There are 6 species worldwide and 1 species which occurs in North Korea.
- Eurasian treecreeper, Certhia familiaris
- Chinese penduline tit, Remiz consobrinus
The white-eyes are small and mostly undistinguished, their plumage above being generally some dull colour like greenish-olive, but some species have a white or bright yellow throat, breast or lower parts, and several have buff flanks. As their name suggests, many species have a white ring around each eye. There are 2 species which occur in North Korea.
Old World orioles
The Old World orioles are colourful passerine birds. They are not related to the New World orioles. There are 29 species worldwide and 1 species which occurs in North Korea.
- Black-naped oriole, Oriolus chinensis
Shrikes are passerine birds known for their habit of catching other birds and small animals and impaling the uneaten portions of their bodies on thorns. A typical shrike's beak is hooked, like a bird of prey. There are 4 species which occur in North Korea.
- Tiger shrike, Lanius tigrinus
- Bull-headed shrike, Lanius bucephalus
- Brown shrike, Lanius cristatus
- Chinese grey shrike, Lanius sphenocercus
Crows, jays, ravens and magpies
The family Corvidae includes crows, ravens, jays, choughs, magpies, treepies, nutcrackers and ground jays. Corvids are above average in size among the Passeriformes, and some of the larger species show high levels of intelligence. There are 120 species worldwide and 8 species which occur in North Korea.
- Eurasian jay, Garrulus glandarius
- Azure-winged magpie, Cyanopica cyana
- Oriental magpie, Pica serica
- Eurasian nutcracker, Nucifraga caryocatactes
- Daurian jackdaw, Corvus dauuricus
- Rook, Corvus frugilegus
- Carrion crow, Corvus corone
- Large-billed crow, Corvus macrorhynchos
Starlings are small to medium-sized passerine birds. Their flight is strong and direct and they are very gregarious. Their preferred habitat is fairly open country. They eat insects and fruit. Plumage is typically dark with a metallic sheen.
Longspurs and arctic buntings
- Lapland longspur, Calcarius lapponicus
Old World buntings
The emberizids are a large family of passerine birds. They are seed-eating birds with distinctively shaped bills. Many emberizid species have distinctive head patterns.
- Pine bunting, Emberiza leucocephalos
- Meadow bunting, Emberiza cioides
- Rufous-backed bunting, Emberiza jankowskii
- Ochre-rumped bunting, Emberiza yessoensis
- Chestnut-eared bunting, Emberiza fucata
- Little bunting, Emberiza pusilla
- Yellow-throated bunting, Emberiza elegans
- Yellow-breasted bunting, Emberiza aureola
- Yellow bunting, Emberiza sulphurata
- Black-faced bunting, Emberiza spodocephala
- Pallas's bunting, Emberiza pallasi
- Reed bunting, Emberiza schoeniclus
Finches, euphonias, and allies
Finches are seed-eating passerine birds, that are small to moderately large and have a strong beak, usually conical and in some species very large. All have twelve tail feathers and nine primaries. These birds have a bouncing flight with alternating bouts of flapping and gliding on closed wings, and most sing well.
- Brambling, Fringilla montifringilla
- Asian rosy finch, Leucosticte arctoa
- Pine grosbeak, Pinicola enucleator
- Common rosefinch, Carpodacus erythrinus
- Pallas's rosefinch, Carpodacus roseus
- Red crossbill, Loxia curvirostra
- White-winged crossbill, Loxia leucoptera
- Common redpoll, Acanthis flammea
- Hoary redpoll, Acanthis hornemanni
- Eurasian siskin, Spinus spinus
- Oriental greenfinch, Chloris sinica
- Eurasian bullfinch, Pyrrhula pyrrhula
- Hawfinch, Coccothraustes coccothraustes
- Yellow-billed grosbeak, Eophona migratoria
- Japanese grosbeak, Eophona personata
- Long-tailed rosefinch, Uragus sibiricus
Old World sparrows
Old World sparrows are small passerine birds. In general, sparrows tend to be small, plump, brown or grey birds with short tails and short powerful beaks. Sparrows are seed eaters, but they also consume small insects.