Do birds see color?
YES—birds see color! In fact, birds have can even see ultraviolet color because they have more cones and rods in their eyes color is critical to birds in terms of choosing a mate and finding food.
Feather color and condition is a sign of gender, good health and virility. Consider the brightly colored male Northern Cardinal, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Baltimore Oriole, Scarlet Tanager, Indigo Bunting, Eastern Bluebird, Rose-Breasted Grossbeak, Mallard, Wood Duck etc. we can readily picture the brightly colored male whereas the female is generally drab and brownish, which provides her and her young critical camouflage during nesting.
Most birds use their keen eyesight to find food especially raptors such as eagles, hawks and falcons who can detect movement from great distances. Some species search out insects and others find tasty morsels among crab apple trees, cedar, winterberry, cranberry, chokeberry and serviceberry.
Birds come to recognize bird feeders by sight. They also communicate vocally when they find food.
Sound also plays a role in finding food and water for many birds. For example, owls have a disc-like face and asymmetric ears, which allows them to detect the slightest sound and movement of a mouse in the dark.