As our world becomes increasingly urbanized, cities are often where people come into contact with the natural world—not just in parks, but in front and back yards. Observing birds in everyday landscapes is one way that people connect to their environments and thus birds provide a bridge to build sustainable actions into our everyday lives. Forest Service scientists and partners conducted bird surveys and social surveys in Chicago-area residential landscapes to examine residents’ perceptions of the birds in their neighborhoods and the relationship of those perceptions with characteristics of the bird community. They found that residents valued many aspects of neighborhood birds, especially those related to aesthetics and birds’ place in the ecosystem. Although birds were generally well liked and annoyances were minor, several common visible urban species (like starlings and jays) may attract attention for their negative qualities. They also found that residents’ valuations of ecosystem services are linked to their perceptions of bird species richness rather than the actual richness. Although birds provide many important ecosystem services, perhaps one of their most important roles in cities is as a relatable and likable connecting point between city dwellers and the broader environment.