From the bright yellow of a sunflower to the more dangerous golden tone of the eyelash viper, the color yellow is found everywhere in nature. No matter where you live or what kind of natural habitats you see around you, there’s bound to be at least a few yellow things wherever you look.
If you’re looking for a way to brighten up your day, read on for our list of some of the most striking examples of the color yellow as found in nature. You can always add to this list on your own if you look hard enough.
Here’s our extensive list of things that are yellow in nature:
1. Acacia Blossoms
Acacia shrubs are the favorite of many at-home gardeners, with their tough branches, olive-colored leaves, and their long, draping clusters of flowers in either a golden yellow or a bright white shade.
Amber isn’t a true gemstone, but rather fossilized tree resin. Nevertheless, it’s a popular choice for jewelry makers around the world thanks to its soft golden glow and translucent, highly reflective qualities.
3. American Goldfinches
As the name suggests, the American Goldfinch is a bright yellow and black bird. However, during the summer, the male bird’s feathers change to an olive green color during the winter months.
4. American Yellow Warblers
Native to North America, South America, and the Caribbean, the American yellow warbler is also known as the “yellow summer bird” both for its cheerful yellow coat and for its summer migratory habits.
5. Apple Snails
Large freshwater snails with both gills and lungs, apple snails are underwater snails, considered a delicacy in some cuisines, with a lemony yellow color along their bodies and a light brown shell.
6. Asian Golden Weavers
The Asian golden weaver takes its name from its golden color as well as from its nests, which it typically weaves out of grasses and other natural or man-made fibers it finds.
7. Banana Slugs
Although they can come in other colors, banana slugs are most often seen with a bright yellow hue. They grow up to nearly ten inches in length and secrete a numbing slime.
As they get older, they may start to develop some nasty brown spots, but while they’re perfectly ripe, bananas are bright yellow on the outside and a pale yellow beneath their peel.
Another extremely popular houseplant, the blossoms of the begonia shrub range in color from blue to pink to a vivid red, but the soft and bright yellow flowers are often most popular.
10. Bird-of-Paradise Flowers
The most obvious color on these striking, bird-shaped plants would probably be orange or blue, but part of the “beak” portion of the flower’s shape is a pale, almost white, yellow color. The bright yellow variant above is called “Mandela’s Gold”.
11. Black-Crested Bulbuls
One look at a black-crested bulbul is enough to know where this little bird got its name. Most of its body is yellow, except for a striking black crest on its head.
12. Burmese Pythons
Burmese pythons, typically some of the largest snakes in the world, are massive snakes that can grow up to twenty-three feet in length and have yellow and brown patterned scales. The albino Burmese pythons are bright yellow and white.
While the wild Atlantic canary is gold and brown in color, it’s the domestic canary that gives rise to the idea of “canary yellow” as a color, thanks to its bright plumage.
14. Cape Weavers
The cape weaver is native to South Africa. The male of the small yellow and brown species builds the nest out of natural fibers, and the female birds test them for quality.
15. Carolina Jessamine Vine
A climbing vine native to the American South, the Carolina Jessamine vine produces large, bright yellow flowers that grow heavily along the vine and give off a sweet, relatively subtle perfume.
Soft, fuzzy, and oh-so-cute, baby chickens come in a lot of different colors. However, when asked to picture a chick, most of us will immediately picture a little ball of yellow fluff.
Chrysoberyl is not a form of the beryl mineral. Instead, it’s a different mineral that still contains some beryllium. It has a pale yellow color, is nearly translucent, and is extremely hard.
Originally native to East Asia, chrysanthemums or “mums” are cheerful yellow flowers. Despite their sunshine-y appearance, however, in many cultures, yellow chrysanthemums are heavily associated with death, despair, mourning, or slighted love.
Citrine quartz is actually the result of structural impurities, as “true” quartz will have a cloudy white appearance. The much rarer Citrine quartz, on the other hand, is a pale, smoky yellow.
20. Clouded Sulfur Butterflies
A common butterfly found throughout the United States, the clouded sulfur butterfly can come in yellow or white “forms” although the yellow is the standard, with brown spots on the lower wings.
A small parrot that usually has a gray, white or pale yellow body with a bright yellow head, the cockatiel is the second most popular pet bird in the world, prized for its intelligence.
22. Coreopsis Blossoms
Sometimes referred to as “tickseed” flowers, the flowers of the Coreopsis genus usually have several small, relatively thin petals, which often have a bright yellow or golden yellow hue.
Whether it’s canned, creamed, or just straight off the cob, corn is one of the most noticeably yellow vegetables on the face of the planet with its white silk and yellow kernels.
Mildly toxic, these woodland flowers by the name of Corydalis come in many colors, including yellow and purple.
25. Craspedia Blossoms
They may look like dandelions, but craspedia blossoms are native to Australia and New Zealand and grow at nearly every elevation found in those countries.
26. Blond-Crested Woodpeckers
With its striking black and yellow plumage, the blond-crested woodpecker is an instantly recognizable bird.
Most of the cucumbers we see at the store are green, but there are certain varieties called lemon cucumbers that have a bright yellow tone.
Daffodils are available in either white or yellow varieties, but the sunshine yellow color of the golden variety is far more iconic.
Native to Mexico and Central America, dahlias come in many different colors, including a bright, cheerful yellow.
They may have a bit of a bad reputation, but dandelions, with their cheerful yellow blossoms, are actually packed with nutrients in addition to being tough, resilient, and truly beautiful little plants.
31. Daylily Blossoms
The daylily isn’t actually a lily at all, but rather the member of a different flower family. However, its large yellow flowers closely resemble lilies, which is how it got its name.
32. Dutch Yellow Hyacinths
Hyacinth blossoms grow on a spike, which means that several of these small, pale yellow blossoms grow close enough together that they may appear as a single tall, slim, and yellow flower.
33. Egg Yolks
If you’ve ever cracked an egg open to make your breakfast, you know the golden yellow color of an egg yolk, the part of the egg meant to nourish the growing chicks.
34. Eyelash Vipers
A small, venomous viper native to South and Central America, the eyelash viper is named for the scales that grow up and out over its eyes, giving it the appearance of eyelashes.
35. Fire Salamanders
Fire salamanders, small black and yellow amphibians found throughout Europe, typically prefer to live in damp, wooded areas. They secrete a toxin from the skin around their head that can be lethal.
Depending on the fuel source used and the gases present during the blaze, the flames of regular fires will often take on a bright yellow color.
37. Gerbera Daisies
Gerbera daisies are often considered one of the “go to” flowers for floral arrangements. The red, orange, or bright yellow blossoms have large, thin petals and relatively small centers for extra color.
One of the most valuable minerals in the world, gold has long been treasured by ancient civilizations and modern cultures alike, prized for its malleability and its bright, golden color.
39. Golden Palm Weavers
A small bird that lives in Eastern Africa, the golden palm weaver is a bright yellow bird that weaves its nest out of palm fibers, usually while hanging carefully beneath its perch.
40. Golden Poisonous Frogs
They may look awfully cute, but these tiny yellow frogs are lethally poisonous. Touching the frog’s skin can lead to heart failure as the body just stops transmitting signals.
41. Golden Retrievers
One of the most popular breeds of dogs around the world, golden retrievers have changed color over time. While they used to be almost reddish-orange in color, today they’re a pale tan yellowish color.
42. Golden Shield Lichen
Often found growing along sea cliffs due to the wealth of minerals left behind by the waves and various birds, golden shield lichen grows in bright yellow sprays across rocky, sunny areas.
43. Golden Trumpet Trees
The flowers of the golden trumpet tree are often considered to be the national flower of Brazil. During the spring, the tree produces large yellow flowers that are extremely rich in nectar.
44. Goldenrod Blossoms
“Goldenrod” is a colloquial term that usually refers to a wide range of flowers. However, most of these flowers are bright yellow blooms typically native to the United States or Africa.
45. Goldenrod Crab Spiders
Goldenrod crab spiders, like all other crab spiders, crawl sideways like a crab. They are either yellow or white in appearance, and can actually change between these two colors for better camouflage.
46. Graham Thomas Roses
Also known as English climbing roses, Graham Thomas roses are large yellow blossoms that grow along a climbing vine and are a popular choice for gardeners who want to cover a bare trellis.
47. Hellebores Flowers
An evergreen plant that flowers during the winter, the hellebore plant produces star-shaped blossoms that can be pink, white, purple, green or yellow. The plant itself is usually extremely poisonous to most mammals.
48. Hollyhock Flowers
Hollyhock flowers are found throughout Europe and Asia, although they’ve spread to gardens around the world. The purple or red varieties are the most common, but they’re available in a soft yellow.
The hexagonal structure of natural honeycombs provides bees with an efficient way of storing their honey and their larvae.
50. Honeydew Melons
Depending on when you harvest them, the outer rind of a honeydew melon may be green, yellow, or white. The inside, however, should always be yellowish-green.
Sometimes called “flower flies”, hoverflies may look like bees, with their black and yellow segmented bodies and habit of feeding on nectar and fruit juice, but they’re stinger-less and mostly harmless.
Probably the most famous yellow fruit in the world, lemons are a bright, cheerful fruit with a sour taste and a thick rind covering the pale yellow flesh on the inside.
Loquats are yellow-orange fruits that originated in China before Japanese scholars during the Chinese Tang Dynasty began to export it back to Japan for study. From there, it spread throughout the world.
The outside of these rich, sweet fruits may be yellow or turn from green to red, but the inside of a mango should always be an orange-yellow color.
With large, round blossoms that look like soft tufts of fabric or paper, marigolds have always been popular. In the Victorian era, they symbolized grief and despair, despite their cheerful color.
Honeydew melons may be some of the rare “true yellow” melons, but a lot of melons (including watermelon) will develop a yellow-white rind as they mature before darkening to their true color.
57. Mexican Yellow Grosbeaks
The Mexican yellow grosbeak is actually part of the same family as the cardinal, but where those birds are usually red and black, these warbling, seed-eating birds are bright yellow and black.
58. Neotropical Parrots
Neotropical parrots are any one of 150 different species of parrots. They’re usually referred to as “new world parrots” and are found throughout tropical Central and South America.
59. Noble Gases
Some gaseous elements and other chemicals on the periodic table give off a yellow, orange, or reddish-orange glow as they burn, which can explain why some gas fires have a yellow tone to them.
60. Pacific Parrotlets
A small parrot native to Central America and South America that live in the tropical forests. Parrotlets are so-called true parrots. Although they differ in size, their closest relative is the Amazon parrot.
61. Pacific Sea Nettles
A large type of jellyfish, the Pacific sea nettle is technically called the Chrysaora fuscescens and is named after Chrysaor, the son of Medusa and Poseidon in Greek mythology.
62. Panamanian Golden Frogs
Panamanian golden frogs are bright yellow frogs with black spots. They are extremely endangered and may actually be extinct in the wild, although they are often bred in captivity for conservation purposes.
63. Passion Fruits
Passion fruits are actually a type of berry. Depending on the specific variety, their outer rinds may be dark purple or bright yellow, although the yellow varieties tend to be slightly larger.
Pears can be either green or yellow, but no matter what their color, there are more than three thousand varieties of this sweet, mellow fruit being grown around the world.
Long a symbol of tropical luxury, the pineapple originally grew in Brazil and Paraguay, but it was brought to Europe in the 1550s and, from there, it spread all over the world.
One of the most popular root vegetables around the world, potatoes often have a soft white or golden yellow tint to their flesh, even if there are several darker varieties found worldwide.
Primroses typically grow in wooded areas, and while the outer parts of the petals may take a wide range of different colors, the centers are almost always a bright golden yellow color.
Often known as “fool’s gold”, pyrite is a sharp and brittle crystal that looks a lot like pure gold but is actually a far less valuable blend of iron and sulfur.
69. Ranunculus Blossoms
Ranunculus is the name given to a large family of flowering plants. While the flowers may have many different colors, perhaps the most famous is the bright yellow hue.
One of the large “gas giant” planets in our solar system, the swirling gases like hydrogen and helium in Saturn’s atmosphere give off a dusty yellow glow that’s clearly visible at night.
Also known as “hog plums”, these small fruits range in color from red to different shades of yellow. They taste a lot like plums except for their characteristic slightly acidic aftertaste.
We’ll talk about some more specific squashes later, but like melons, many different varieties of squash have a pale yellow rind or outer layer as they’re just starting to mature and develop.
Technically Carambola, starfruits get their name from their unusually shaped fruits. When you look at a starfruit from the end, the different lobes of the fruit resemble a star.
74. Summer Squashes
Summer squash is actually the name given to several squashes, usually part of the Cucurbita pepo plant group, that are harvested much earlier than traditional squashes, hence their “summer” designation.
75. Sun Conure Parrots
Sun conure parrots, like many other birds in the same family, have orange and yellow feathers that give them a tropical appearance and contrast nicely with the green feathers of their wings.
Sunflowers take their name both from their cheerful, sunny color and from the fact that they turn throughout the day to follow the light that the sun provides.
77. The Sun
Obviously you should never look directly at the sun, but most of us draw the sun in yellow for a reason. The mix of gases that provide the sun’s heat give off a bright yellow glow.
78. Tiger Swallowtail Butterflies
One of the most famous butterflies in the world, the tiger swallowtail butterfly has a striking black and yellow pattern on its wings. The female butterfly may also have several blue spots.
Tulips, like many of the flowers on this list, can come in a wide range of colors. Nevertheless, the bright yellow tulip blossom is one of the most iconic yellow flowers available.
80. White Asparagus
It may be called white, but white asparagus is usually a very pale yellow in color, since it’s a variation of the typically yellowish green strain of traditional asparagus.
81. White-Tailed Bumblebees
The white-tailed bumblebee is found in many regions throughout Europe and Asia. Its name comes from the distinctive tuft of white fuzz that lies right above the base of this bee’s stinger.
82. Yarrow Blossoms
Native to Europe, Asia, and North America, the yarrow plant used to be a popular choice for stopping bleeding in early medicine. Its white flowers have small yellow centers and pale seeds. They also exist in a pure yellow form.
83. Yellow Anacondas
Found in Brazil, Bolivia, Paraguay, Argentina, and Uruguay, the yellow anaconda can grow up to fourteen feet long. It has a yellow and black pattern along its scales and few natural predators.
84. Yellow Aphids
Aphids are small insects that drink the sap of various plants. They come in a wide range of colors, from green to brown to yellow, and are usually considered to be pests.
85. Yellow Armadillos
Otherwise known as the six-banded armadillo, the yellow armadillo is native to South America. It has terrible eyesight, but it’s a super strong digger with a fantastic sense of smell and hearing.
86. Yellow Bell Peppers
Whether they’re green, red, or yellow, bell peppers actually aren’t peppers at all. Instead, they’re a form of berry that were called “pepper” by Europeans who were startled by their spicy nature.
87. Yellow Budgerigars
No one really knows where the budgerigar got its name. What we do know is that with its bright yellow and green coats, the budgie is a beloved pet bird.
88. Yellow Butterfly Bushes
Yellow butterfly bushes are named after their flowers. Because of the slightly drooping petals and the way they seem to hang off the plant, the bright yellow flowers closely resemble resting butterflies.
89. Yellow Common Seahorses
One of the larger seahorses in the world, the yellow common seahorse can grow up to a foot in length with a bright yellow skin. It’s typically very peaceful and somewhat shy.
90. Yellow Diamonds
Clear diamonds are far more valuable, but yellow diamonds are the result of certain contaminants that accumulate during the formation process, resulting in a diamond with a soft, almost golden, light reflection.
91. Yellow Dragon Fruits
Technically the fruit of a type of cactus, dragon fruits often have a tough yellow rind. The inside of the fruit is a creamy white flesh with lots of little black seeds.
92. Yellow Figs
Depending on how long they’re left to mature, yellow figs may actually look a little closer to green figs, but their flesh will still have a golden brown color once they’re opened.
93. Yellow Golden Pheasants
With a pale brown tail and brown wings, the striking plumage of the yellow golden pheasant actually developed as the result of a mutation of the more common red golden pheasant’s plumage.
94. Yellow Irises
With its long, slim leaves and its bright yellow flowers, yellow irises are a popular garden plant. However, they’re also tough enough that they’re actually an invasive species in many non-native areas.
95. Yellow Kiwis
Kiwi fruits are usually fuzzy and brown on the outside and green on the inside, but yellow kiwis or “golden kiwis” are a popular variation that’s full of vitamin C and potassium.
96. Yellow Pansies
Pansies are a hybrid plant that have been a popular mainstay in gardens around the world since their 1812 introduction, with their petals in shades of yellow, purple, red, or white.
97. Yellow Roses
We’ve already looked at some specific breeds of roses that are always yellow, but there are actually several different species of rose that have been bred for that cheerful color.
98. Yellow Sapphires
Sapphires are typically a deep, rich blue in color. However, these semiprecious gems come in other colors, including pink and yellow, with the yellow stones typically being found in parts of Montana.
99. Yellow Tangs
While blue tangs, popularized by Disney’s Finding Nemo, may be more well-known, yellow tangs are members of the same fish family and are common residents in many at-home aquariums.
100. Yellow Tomatoes
You may think of tomatoes as only coming in red and green, but there is a special yellow variety that has a sweeter taste but is still a member of the family.
101. Yellow Topazes
In ancient Roman and Medieval European times, topazes were believed to enhance mental powers, ward off mental illness, or protect against evil intentions. They were often worn as amulets or warding talismans.
102. Yellow-Throated Martens
A small, furry animal that resembles a weasel, the yellow-throated marten has a long, powerful tail and a bright gold and black coat. Its habitat is distributed throughout East and Southeast Asia.
Zircon is a silicate mineral that has several natural colors, including yellow, blue, red, orange, and brown. The orange, red, and yellow varieties are often referred to as jacinth, after the hyacinth flower.
Things That Are Yellow in Nature
Next time you’re out on a walk or just driving around your neighborhood, keep your eyes peeled for some extra examples of one of the happiest colors found in nature. Unlike other colors like blue or purple, yellow is relatively plentiful in nature, so there’s a high chance you may spot something that we missed. If that’s the case, we’d love the opportunity to add more yellow things to our list.