With hundreds of amazing bird species in Colorado, Wyoming, and Utah, it can feel daunting to learn how to identify them, but don't let that prevent you from enjoying them! You don't need to be good at identifying birds to experience the joy of birds.
Spending time observing birds is the best way to improve your identification skills. Yes, there are all kinds of tips and tricks for telling similar species apart, but the best way to start is to familiarize yourself with the birds most common where you live.
Think about a close friend you have. You can probably identify them silhouetted from a hundred yards away, right? You didn't memorize a list of their field marks, did you? You're able to recognize your friend because you've subconsciously learned how they look and move after spending lots of time with them. You can do the same thing with birds!
That being said, it can be useful to teach yourself some bird identification basics so you know what to pay attention to. Here are resources we've created to help you appreciate the birds near you!