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The Top 10 Best Birds of 2022

Updated: Jan 8

A look back on what 2022 gave us in bird photography!

From elusive to common, these birds have all landed our Top 10 Best Birds of 2022, according solely to yours truly, the author (Gen). Those are pretty much my only credentials HAHA! I've compiled my list based on how cool the birds are (totally by their looks!), how popular they were on my dad's social media, and how great the photograph itself is, among other non-professional criteria. Sometimes, it just comes down to how freaking awesome the picture is, and that my friends is just gosh darn good photography skills. Thankfully we have a talented photographer who can deliver ALL of it!

So buckle up, my reader friends, let's explore Gen's Top 10 Best Birds of 2022!

(this post contains links to our online store. Clicking on these links may lead to total happiness, elation, and the desire to decorate your home with really cool pictures of birds. You can thank me later, you're welcome)

Great Blue Heron


Roseate Spoonbill

The Roseate Spoonbill (platalea ajaja... I can't even make this stuff up) could be on this list simply because I like the color pink. But it's not. These two images were taken in St. Augustine, Florida. Surprisingly enough, Mike was able to capture a few photos of a Roseate Spoonbill all the way up north in central Pa, where he lives. They are gorgeous waterfowl who look more and more bizarre the closer you get to them. These birds garnered over 5,000 likes, 1,000 shares, and introduced countless people to a bird they never knew existed. You're welcome.

Roseate Spoonbill on Nest, St Augustine Alligator Farm


Ruddy Duck

The Ruddy Duck. (file that under cool band names in case I ever need one)

That beak, yo. I like color! Bright pops of color. This magnificent waterfowl was found in Yellowstone NP, one of Mike's favorite places on earth to take photographs. One cannot help but look at this photo and picture it enlarged and framed, hanging in a den or a hunting camp. OR! In a child's play room for that POP of color I mentioned. I guess you really could see this picture hanging pretty much anywhere....and that's why it made my list. We all could use a piece of art of a little duck splish-splashing around living his best ducky life.


Bald Eagles

Consistently over the past 7 years of shooting wildlife photography, Bald Eagles have been the top performers. These two photos topped the chart with a combined 11 THOUSAND likes! You cannot dislike such a majestic and inspiring bird. It's not possible (according to me). And any follower of Michael Carmo Photography can attest that he is simply the bald eagle whisperer! The photo below has a fun story behind it:

My dad and I were talking business on the phone when all of a sudden he says, I'll call you back I see an EAGLE! ::end call:: He calls me back about 15 minutes later and carries on the conversation as normal.

Once (many years ago) my husband called me on Black Friday saying he just passed some goofy guy on the side of the highway perched out his car door with a huge lens taking pictures of an eagle, "call your dad to see if that was him". Indeed it was! Normal people see a hawk or eagle while out driving and say, oh cool look at that! Mike pulls over, grabs his camera, and takes photos like these. And that is what sets him above us normal people, his talent and eye for spotting a potentially absolutely terrific photograph. Both of these photographs were shot in Maryland,

Bald Eagle



The Egret. The snow-white plumage is striking against the darker background in the photo. This bird makes my list based on the quality of the photo. The detail you see in the feathers, the piercing eyes, and the way the photo portrays the mother and baby bird relationship is quite phenomenal. This photo was taken in Northern Florida and got over 2.1k likes on Facebook!



Anhinga, shot taken in Harris Neck Wildlife Reserve, Georgia. This is another bird I didn't even know existed that I ended up google'ing to learn more. This bird may also have to get the award for most nicknames: darter, American darter, snakebird, water turkey (my fave), devil bird... to the Tupi Indians in Brazil, it means "evil spirit of the woods."

Yikes on Bikes.

And that, my dear reader friends, is why this dude lands on my list. Also, a more recent photo below (taken in Jan 2023, but has earned the right to be mentioned here) taken by Mike is already surpassing 30 THOUSAND likes and almost 10,000 shares on Facebook. Wowsers!


Blue Heron

How can this be real? How can so much beauty exist in one photograph of a bird? Taken in Florida, Mike treks around the swamps, lake shores, and checks up in the trees to find these beautiful bluish-grey birds. His favorite place to find Great Blue Herons is at the Circle B Bar Reserve in Lakeland, Florida. On social media, these birds are a hit, always bringing in 1-2k likes. Definitely a crowd favorite!



Who doesn't love a pelican?

To this author, they represent the ocean, beach, vacation, and just really cool, big, goofy, birds.

It's hard to NOT stop and watch these guys soaring above the surf and the POW!!! they dive bomb down below the surface. It's like watching a missel fall to the ocean surface. My husband and I watched for hours, on the beach in St Thomas, pelicans diving below the water, coming back up, taking off, and then repeating.

You also see these funny guys hanging out at fishing piers in all the touristy areas. I may or may not have a picture of myself and a brown pelican posing like each other on a pier, man was he good at impersonating a normal person.

I enjoy every picture Mike takes of these dudes, but what got me was the pictures with the weird fin thingy on their beaks. I consulted the Google and it told me that pelicans develop these "bumps" during mating season and fall off after eggs have been laid. Cool! Now ya know!

White Pelican

Brown Pelican




These are photos of Great Horned Owls. A few years ago Mike was able to capture some of the most astounding photos I've ever seen of the Great Snowy Owl in our hometown! Owls remind me of my childhood and going on nature hikes in the dark with my mom at King's Gap near where I grew up. We would go out to listen for the spring peepers and would hear and SEE owls! They are birds of mystery, majesty, and mythology. But something I've never been able to see IRL are the owlets. So the fact that Mike was able to get shots of these baby owls is just so awesome to me. Thus, they make the list!

Owlet in Tree



These birds of prey make my list because Mike's followers on Facebook love them, too!

One of my all-time favorite photos of a hawk is the one above. The fence line fading off into the distance; the red-tailed hawk perched just so. This photo was taken in Gettysburg, PA. As a history nerd, this photo speaks volumes to me. This photo deserves to be hung on the wall, a red canvas matting, with cream border, with a darker greyish brown wood frame.

The following picture looks like a painting!

Red-tailed Hawk on Branch



Cardinals. A truly welcomed friend to any gardener, bird enthusiast, and nature lover. They represent love and devotion. Spiritually, they symbolize the connection between heaven and earth and for many people, a sign from above by a lost loved one. Regardless of your personal beliefs, these birds bring a smile to your face. Songbirds have a special place in my heart, so rounding off this list with one of the most recognizable seems appropriate!


Thank you for reading my bird post! You can find almost all of these prints available for purchase on our online store by clicking the blue underlined names above. To shop the full site, click here!

Green Heron

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