What’s a bird code?

Bird codes and banding codes are four-letter nicknames for birds.

Toggle full names

This is the most common type of bird code. When the name is two words, the code is uses the first two letters of each one.

Mourning Dove
Great Egret
Common Nighthawk

When the name is one word, the code is simply the first four letters.


When the name is three words, the code is the first letter of the first two words, and the first two letters of the third.

Clay-Colored SParrow

A hyphen is treated like a space if it occurs at the beginning, but having one at the end flips the order.

FLorida Scrub-Jay

When the name is four words, the code is the first letter of each one regardless of hyphens.

Eastern Whip-Poor-Will
Gray-Crowned Rosy-Finch
Wedge-Rumped Storm-Petrel

BRDL uses these codes for solutions, but uses several bird code sources to help faciliate guessing.

Inspired by this article by Kent Fiala

Alphacodes.net - Look up bird codes

BRDL - Guess the bird banding code!