Yellow Birds in Michigan

Yellow Birds In Michigan

Michigan is a state located in the Great Lakes region of the upper Midwestern states in the US.

Because the Great Lakes run straight through it, Michigan is split into two peninsulas which are referred to as the “Upper Peninsula” and the “Lower Peninsula”.

Yellow Birds in Michigan

Because four of the five Great Lakes run through Michigan, it is rich with natural life, which includes birds.

In this article, we will be going over some types of yellow birds you can find within the Great Lakes State. 

It is important to note that with most of these birds, the male and female variations are slightly different in appearance, but don’t worry, we’ll be discussing both the male and female variations too! 

Bell’s Vireo

Bell’s Vireo

A songbird that is small in stature, the Bell’s Vireo is most active in Michigan’s borders between April and July. 

Bell’s Vireos like to forage within dense vegetation, using their small size to traverse between the wild bushes and keep themselves hidden whilst they find food. They eat a mixture of wild berries and large insects. 

Its appearance is slender with a small bill, a distinct olive-green and yellow body color, and a tail that is somewhat long. 

Painted Bunting

Painted Bunting

The male Painted Bunting is a spectacular-colored bird. Along with hues of yellow, it is also green, blue, and red.

The females are usually a bright yellowy-green color. They can usually be found in Michigan between the months of May and July. 

These songbirds usually eat seeds and occasionally insects, and can be found foraging on the floors of dense forests, woodlands, and grassy areas. 

When they are in the breeding season, the male Painted Bunting likes to perch out in the open and sing its songs to attract a potential mate. 

Yellow-Breasted Chat

Yellow-Breasted Chat

These birds are between the size of a sparrow and a robin. They are an olive-green color with a bright yellow breast, a gray face, and distinct white and black face markings.

Like Painted Buntings, Yellow-Breasted Chats can usually be found in Michigan during the months of May and July. 

They can usually be found in dense areas such as thickets, bramble bushes, shrubs, and along streams.

The diet of a Yellow-Breasted Chat usually consists of insects, such as moths, beetles, ants, and grasshoppers.

They also enjoy berries such as wild grapes and elderberries. 

Prothonotary Warbler

Prothonotary Warbler

A small yellow bird, Prothonotary Warblers spend their time in Michigan during the Spring/Summer months before migrating to the West Indies and South America. 

The male Prothonotary Warbler is a golden yellow color with gray-blue wings and tail and black eyes.

If you were to look at this bird from underneath, you would see its white underside.

The females are very similar but are more often than not paler than the males. 

You’ll usually find Prothonotary Warblers in woodlands near streams and lakes, as well as in wooded swamps.

Their diet mainly consists of snails and insects you’d find in swampy areas.

American Goldfinch

American Goldfinch

This bird can be found in Michigan all year long but is most active in the summer months. 

The male American Goldfinch is a dazzling, bright yellow color with a black forehead.

Their wings are black and decorated with white markings. The females are a bit quite different though, having a primary olive color and a yellow underside that is a lot duller than the male. 

The American Goldfinch is usually found in weedy fields and floodplains, but can also be found in orchards, roadsides, and backyards. They generally like to eat seeds and grains. 

Western Tanager 

Western Tanager 

The Western Tanager is similar in size to the Yellow-Breasted Chat and can usually be found most commonly in the Spring months, between February and March. 

They are usually found in open woodlands, especially evergreen forests. This habitat lets them remain hidden in the canopies and traverse methodically between the leaves and branches.

Western Tanagers live on a diet of insects and fruit, but they will also eat berries. 

They have yellow bodies with an orange head and their wings, tails, and backs are black. 

Hooded Oriole

Hooded Oriole

A robin-sized bird, the Hooded Oriole can usually be spotted in Michigan between April and May. 

The male Hooded Oriole’s main color ranges from a magnificent yellow to a fiery orange.

Their throat, part of their face, wings, and tail are usually black. The females are usually olive with grey backs and their wingbars are white. 

Hooded Orioles can usually be found in trees such as sycamores, willows, and cottonwoods.

Anywhere with open woodlands and scattered trees make an ideal home for these yellow birds.

Their diet consists of insects, berries, and nectar. Some of their favorite insects include caterpillars, ants, wasps, and beetles. 

Townsend’s Warbler

Townsend’s Warbler

Another bird about the size of a sparrow, Townsend’s Warblers can be found in Michigan during the summer. 

The male variation of this bird has a black throat and head, with stripey yellow markings on its face.

They have gray wings with white wingbars and their backs are an olive-green color.

The female variants look very similar to the males, but their markings are not as distinct.

The Townsend’s Warbler generally lives in old conifer forests and woodland, choosing to nest and forage in the higher parts of the trees.

They mainly eat spiders, seeds, and insects, but they are also known to eat berries as well. 


Michigan is a prime location for bird watching and is home to a huge variety. Yellow birds are in abundance in the Great Lakes State.

Some other yellow birds we haven’t mentioned that you can find in Michigan include Yellow-Bellied Flycatchers, Couch’s Kingbirds, Worm-Eating Warblers, Baltimore Orioles, and the Blue-Winged Warblers. 

Next time you go for a walk or take a ride in a car, or even if you’re at home and in your garden and you find yourself hearing the birds sing, see if you can spot and identify any of these yellow birds with the descriptions we have given you!