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How Common are Nuthatches?

How Common are Nuthatches?

The tiny, upside-down birds, nuthatches, visiting your backyard are among the most common birds in the US. If you are a new bird feeder, you might think, how common are nuthatches? Or, where can you find them? Don’t worry! The answers to all these questions are in this article. Let’s get started!

What are the common types of nuthatches in the US?

Nuthatches are a common sighting in the US. The United States of America is home to four different types of nuthatches. So, the common varieties of nuthatches you can expect in your home in the US are:

1. White-breasted nuthatch

White-breasted Nuthatches have a frosty white face and underparts and a gray-blue back. The neck and black or gray cap frame the face and give the impression that the bird is wearing a hood. Frequently, the lower belly and area under the tail are chestnut.

2. Red-breasted nuthatch

A little songbird, the red-breasted nuthatch, is. The adult has a white throat and face with a black stripe through the eyes, a straight gray bill, cinnamon underparts, and a black crown. 

3. Brown-headed nuthatch

Brown-headed nuthatches have creamy white undersides, bluish-gray wings, and brown crowns on both the male and female. Although their colors are duller, young birds resemble adults in appearance. Red- and white-breasted nuthatches are larger than brown-headed nuthatches.

4. Pygmy nuthatch

Pygmy nuthatches are little songbirds with a big head, a straight bill, and a short, square tail. Their rich brown hat ends in a sharp line through the eye, and they have slate gray wings and back. Additionally, the underparts of these nuthatches are yellowish to pale buff.

Moving on, let’s address your mainframe question, how common are nuthatches?

How common are nuthatches?

As you already know, nuthatches have various types. Depending on their variety, they are common in some parts. Let’s understand the location where specific types of nuthatches are common.

1. White-breasted nuthatch

Most of North America, from southern Canada to northern Florida and southern Mexico, is home to white-breasted nuthatches. There are approximately 10 million white-breasted nuthatches, and it appears that they are slowly becoming more numerous. These nuthatch species are protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918. They are widely spread throughout the United States.

2. Red-breasted nuthatch

This bird favors subtropical or tropical forest and shrubland environments, plantations, and rural gardens. It is native to North America, Saint Pierre, and Miquelon.

This bird has an estimated 18,000,000 individuals worldwide, and there are no symptoms of decline that would need IUCN Red List inclusion. Because of this, the Red-breasted Nuthatch’s assessment status is currently Least Concern. So long as you reside in the areas where red-breasted nuthatches are found, they are thriving and widespread.

3. Brown-headed nuthatch

Year-round, they can be found as far south as Florida, as far west as Arkansas, and as far north as the Delmarva Peninsula. Thus, nuthatches with brown heads do not migrate. Pine specialists that reside in established forests are brown-headed nuthatches.

A total of 1.1 million of these nuthatches are thought to reproduce worldwide, with almost all of them spending the entire year in the United States. Brown-headed nuthatches are frequently attracted to gardens in the South if you have suet feeders or pine trees on your property.

4. Pygmy nuthatch

Pygmy nuthatches are thought to have 3.3 million breeding individuals worldwide. Pygmy Nuthatches are found in western North American pine forests, and they like mature ponderosa pine woodlands in particular. If your property has pine trees, these species may come to your feeders.

5. Eurasian nuthatch

The only nuthatch species to be found in Britain is the Eurasian nuthatch. It can be found in deciduous woodlands, parks, and expansive gardens where it builds its nests in tree holes between April and May.

The nuthatch population in the UK is doing well; it has increased by about 250 percent since the 1970s. They frequent bird feeders and reside close to people in the UK.

Nuthatches are highly common backyard birds in the UK and USA. They can come to your feeders and properties, provided you live in the population region. Also, they are attracted by specific tree types. So, if you want to commonly see nuthatches in your garden, planting their favorite trees on your property will be the best plan.

Where can nuthatches be found?

You already know the geographical region where nuthatches are found. However, where can you exactly see them? Or, more precisely, where do they spend their days and roost at night? Let’s find out!

1. Trees

The most common sightings of nuthatches can be on trees. They spend most of their time collecting food and eating. So, you can find them eating seeds, fruits, and insects that remain hidden under tree barks.

2. Natural tree cavities

Natural tree cavities are the ideal dwelling places for nuthatches. They make nests in these cavities and roost inside them at night. Some species, like the Pygmy nuthatch, roost inside natural tree cavities in a flock of over 100 individuals.

3. Abandoned woodpecker holes

Woodpecker holes might appear dead but thrives with life. These holes are nests and roosting sites for nuthatches. You can often find nuthatches living inside these cavities, especially during the night.

4. Bird boxes

If trees in your locality have no natural cavities, you can provide bird boxes to the nuthatches. They can roost inside these boxes or make nests. So, bird boxes are other sites to find various nuthatch species.

5. Building crevices

Sometimes, nuthatches can peck holes in the wooden features of homes. They can make nests inside these cavities, hide their food, or roost at night. So, building holes and crevices are an excellent place to find nuthatches.

6. Abandoned boxes

Although unlikely, nuthatches can make nests or take shelter at night in the abandoned boxes on your property. If you want to find one, you can check the empty boxes.

For more details on different aspects on where do nuthatches roost, check out this article.


Nuthatches are common property visitors in the USA and UK. So, if you want to see them chirping on your property, you need to provide them with food and trees in their natural habitat zone. And that’s it! They will visit you!