Wingspan Teal Powers: Discover How All 20 Teal Powered Bird Cards Rank

Wingspan Teal Powers Ranked - Game Strategy

End-of-round teal powers were introduced in Wingspan’s European Expansion. In total, there are currently 20 teal-powered birds.

It’s important to remember that Wingspan teal powers trigger at the end of each round.

  1. Use “round end” bird powers.
  2. Score end-of-round goal.
  3. Remove all action cubes.
  4. Discard and replace all cards in the bird tray.
  5. Pass the first player token clockwise.

See Page 2 of the European Expansion rulebook for the order in which to resolve end of round game actions.

As a general rule, it’s important to remember that end-of-round teal powers do not trigger “once between turns” pink powers.

Ranking Teal Powered Wingspan Cards From Worst to Best

20. Eurasian Green Woodpecker

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Eurasian Green WoodpeckerTo start off the list, let’s take a look at the Eurasian Green Woodpecker. This bird’s particular power is limited by the number of round goals that specifically count birds, which aren’t many, and there are only four round goals that ever affect a game at one time.

It stands to reason that this power will increase in usefulness as more expansions are released, and more round goals that count birds are added to the game.

If a teal power is situational/limited/restricted, the bird it’s attached to needs to have good general qualities to make it valuable when it’s just sitting there doing nothing. A four-point bird with a three-egg nest that costs two food is average at best. It does play well with the Viticulturalist and Cartographer bonus cards though.

If we ever see powers that let us manipulate round goals, this teal power could theoretically become more useful.

19. Cetti’s Warbler

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Cettis WarblerCetti’s Warbler suffers from the same problems as the Eurasian Green Woodpecker above. However, with the Historian bonus card, it becomes a decent play, scoring two more points.

 

 

18. Greylag Goose

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Greylag GooseGreylag Goose suffers from the same problems as Cetti’s Warbler and Eurasian Green Woodpecker. The only redeeming quality of this bird is that it’s worth seven points.

 

 

17. Dunnock

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - DunnockThis bird is meant to be used as a direct counter-play to an opponent’s Grasslands strategy, which may not happen as often in the Oceania Expansion metagame.

Its nest size is average at four, so it isn’t horrible at fulfilling its intended purpose, as it can only lay eggs on itself. Its other general qualities are lackluster. Make sure you spend those eggs to make room for more. Dunnock can act as a thorn in the side of a Power 4 engine with some work.

16. Hooded Crow

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Hooded CrowHooded Crow is similar to Dunnock, it’s a lackluster bird that can act as a direct counter-play to your opponent’s Grasslands engine. If properly supported, it gives you passive card cycling that scales with your hand size, which is pretty good. It picks up two points from Omnivore Specialist and Bird Counter, but that still makes it an expensive five-point play.

 

 

15. European Honey Buzzard

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - European Honey BuzzardThis Wingspan card provides an interesting way to passively generate extra worms for strategies that aren’t building into the forest. Worms are a more common food type, and you get to refresh the birdfeeder before checking. Under Omnivore Specialist, it becomes a decent play for six points at the cost of two food. It also plays well with Cartographer.

It combos fairly well with “discard food to tuck birds” on this list: Common Starling, Common Swift, and Eurasian Collard Dove.

14. Eurasian Magpie

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Eurasian MagpieHere is another bird that’s primary use is as a counter-play to opposing Grasslands. Caching from the general supply is the optimal form of caching, and this bird does it.

It caches a food type of your choice on any of your birds, and as a result of this, it combos fairly uniquely with Coal Tit and Eurasian Nuthatch. If you choose to cache wheat on those birds, you then have the option of spending it at any time. The Eurasian Magpies’ general qualities aren’t great, making it a reasonably weak play if you aren’t using its power.

13. Eurasian Collared Dove

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Eurasian Collared DoveThis Dove interacts well with many quality bonus cards. It gets you 50% of the way to the first three points of Viticulturalist, Cartographer, Anatomist, and Prairie Manager. It also becomes a seven-point drop for two food under Bird Counter.

Spending food from your personal supply to fuel this power is suboptimal, as food in your supply can be spent to play birds, ideally scoring you up to three points per food spent. This bird’s power converts food to points at a 1:1 ratio.

For all intents and purposes, this power behaves like a caching effect that draws from your personal supply. It shines when your opponents use a lot of shared resource effects, and you have more food than you can effectively utilize.

The Eurasian Collared-Dove has the best version of this power as it can use any food type. This is especially useful to score from food types that are typically slightly more difficult to utilize, such as fish and rats. It’s also a great way to convert unspent nectar at the end of the round.

With the Oceania Expansion board, there is a wider variety of options to convert food into points. Most notably, columns one, three, four, and five in the Grasslands convert excess food into eggs. This lessens the impact of this archetype of bird. Eggs are the best resource, so converting food and cards into eggs is the preferred conversion option. That being said, this particular teal power converts food into points passively, ignoring the expenditure of action cubes.

12. Common Starling

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Common StarlingSimilar to Eurasian Collared-Dove in overall impact. It becomes a five-point drop for one food with the Bird Counter bonus card. Even without the Bird Counter bonus card, it efficiently uses one food, scoring three points from it. A four egg nest makes it a decent egg bank while waiting to use its power.

 

11. House Sparrow

Wingspan teal powers - House SparrowAnother card similar to Eurasian Collared-Dove is the House Sparrow. Its power is restricted to seeds, so it is less useful in that regard. Where House Sparrow shines is its general qualities.

You get a six-point bird with a five egg nest for the cost of two food. This pushes the boundaries of what you can get for the cost of two food. That being said, larger nest sizes are more challenging to take advantage of in the Oceania metagame. The Bird Counter bonus card makes this an even better point bomb, putting it on par with Wild Turkey for total point value and nest size.

10. Carrion Crow

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Carrion CrowThe Carrion Crow card is a direct counter-play to predator-heavy games. You can even choose yourself as the Crow’s target, which makes it even better, as you can control how effective it is by playing more predators.

Even if a player only has one predator on the board all game, Carrion Crow yields seven points for two food by the end of the game (if played in round one) – nine points under Omnivore Specialist. The fact that it caches from the general supply is key to its usefulness.

9. Griffon Vulture

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Griffon VultureA vulture done right! It’s the same power as Carrion Crow but on the Vulture chassis. If anyone, including yourself, has even a couple of predators, this becomes a fantastic value at zero food.

 

 

8. Common Goldeneye

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Common GoldeneyePassive Egg laying is a premium ability in the Oceania metagame. Unfortunately for the Common Goldeneye, you have to wait until end-of-round to collect its eggs, so it can’t contribute to your egg acceleration in round one.

Going into each subsequent round, however, it can give you the egg production needed to get more birds on the board and compensate for underdeveloped Grasslands. As long as you support it with the right nests, that is. Note that this bird only lays eggs on itself, not other birds; I’ve seen several people make this mistake.

7. Common Swift

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Common SwiftThis bird’s best quality is that it’s five points for a single food right out of the gate. Bird counter and Food Web Expert each make it seven. If you manage to discard some excess worms and tuck a few points by the end of the game, that’s just icing on the cake. It makes a great companion for the European Honey Buzzard.

 

6. Ruff

Wingspan Card - RuffThis bird card serves as a great passive card cycler in an underdeveloped habitat for an engine with excess cards. It plays well with Omnivore Specialist and Bird Counter, picking up two points each. There’s nothing more to say about this very solid card. See more on Ruff here: The Power of Tucking Cards in Wingspan

 

5. Yellowhammer

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - YellowhammerThe Yellowhammer’s power takes some micromanagement, but the payoff is usually worth it. Using it effectively is probably one of the more nuanced skills in Wingspan.

It essentially gives you up to a net of three free action cubes (to play birds; you spend an action to play the Yellowhammer to begin with), which is the game’s most valuable resource. There aren’t any discounts associated with this, so you’re still on the hook for all that food and those eggs. Anything that costs zero food, such as Vultures, the “play on top” predators, or the “tuck to play” predators make an amazing combo with this bird’s power. Dropping a California Condor at the end of the fourth round is also a great chance to pick up a choice bonus card when you don’t have any food left. If you can make effective use of this power early, it can give you a substantial advantage over your opponents. Yellowhammer is a bad play if you aren’t going to effectively use its power, as its general qualities are bad.

4. Moltoni’s Warbler

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Moltonis WarblerMoltoni’s Warbler has the same power and similar general qualities as Yellowhammer but gets the nod here due to its slightly better interactions with bonus cards. Historian, Viticulturalist, and Prairie Manager being better options than what Yellowhammer gets to work with. Having two different types of food in its cost also makes it easier to get onto the board early.

 

 

3. White Wagtail

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - White WagtailWhite Wagtail has the same power and general qualities as Yellowhammer and Moltoni’s Warbler. It can hold a decent amount of eggs (five), making it a good egg bank while waiting to use its power. Its interactions with bonus cards aren’t significant, but it does pick up two points from the Food Web Expert bonus card. The double worm cost can be annoying in the early stages of the game.

 

2. Lesser Whitethroat

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Lesser WhitethroatOptimizing this teal power takes some micromanagement, but the payoff is frequently worth it. You have to play your whole game thinking about how to get the most out of this power. It’s realistic to approach fifteen points scored through eggs if played in round one (although you’re probably spending most of these eggs). Its worth zero points and only has a two-egg nest, so it’s worthless unless you get some mileage out of its power. It qualifies for seven bonus cards which is a respectable number. This bird’s power pairs very well with Oologist. Its a great feeling to drop five eggs at the end of round four and max out that bonus. Passive egg-laying, especially of this calibur, is a massive game-changer in the Oceania Expansion metagame.

Redstart qualifies for twelve bonus cards and Whitestart qualifies for seven, which are respectable numbers.

1. Black Redstart

Wingspan Teal Powers Card - Black RedstartThe Black Redstart has the same power as Lesser Whitethroat. A four-egg star nest makes it a pretty good egg bank while it waits to use its power; however, this makes it cost one more food.  It has a much better interaction with bonus cards than its counterpart, qualifying for twelve total.

 

 

Wingspan Teal Powers: What’s Your Favorite?

That’s our Ranking of the 20 Wingspan Teal Power cards.

Drop a comment below and let us know what your favorite teal-powered card is! Don’t forgot to see how we rank Wingspan’s Pink Powered birds.

 

3 Comments

  1. motherlove

    Nice list, I agree with the general power ranking, passive eggs are excellent in OE where you want to play more birds but can’t lay as many eggs. Easily the most powerful round 1 teal power.
    More often than not I find that the whitethroat’s combination of food cost and ability to go in the forest allows me to get 2-3 eggs on round 1 instead of just 1 with redstart, and forest is kinda just a more useful habitat to build up early.

    I’ve always been a fan of the way eurasian hobby and common swift seem to slot together like jigsaw pieces, not necessarily particularly good but it definitely makes you feel good and like you know what you’re doing.

    The food discarding powers seem underrated tho, I’ve played them often in all kinda of engines because of their flexibility. In tucking engine it means you’re essentially converting your food producing bird into a point machine whereas playing birds would often not be worth it (especially engines with no net card gain), wood duck / galah engines also typically end up with extra food because of the new OE board and the collared dove essentially dove you more activations. Those birds also enable eurasian nutcracker engines to be not complete garbage. And they also pair surprisingly well with yellowhammer type birds where taking loads of food can sometimes be a wasted turn in round 4.
    Kinda just has a ton of flexibility because the collared dove’s five points means you don’t actually need to play it particularly early for it to be worth it.
    The house finch is much more restricted since seed usually shares a side with nectar. It at least combines well with maned duck and takes advantage of an opponent’s galah.

    • Great insights, thanks for sharing. As always, strong situational awareness is necessary when playing, as plays that might normally be “bad” might have a moment to shine and actually score you a good chunk of points. A good example that I think you can appreciate is Horned Lark. Teal powers add some complexity to Wingspan and I think that’s a good thing.

  2. Norma Miller

    I play Wingspan with all three decks (basic, EE&OE) NOT mixed together. I segregate & shuffle each pile before laying them in respective card holders & face-up tray. I could stack the tray with EE cards from the deck at each reset, but we don’t. We just replace them with cards from their respective deck when required.
    When playing with all three separate decks, I find a distinct advantage in having an option to draw more or less cards from any of the decks to help my particular power situation. I tested this game play over a number of games with segregated decks vs playing with totally mixed together stacks & have kept data on the outcomes of each. I’ve attained my peronal highest scores in the last 5 consecutive games when successfully attempting to “juice” my hand with early teal & later yellow birds. I filled all my habitats yesterday for the first time. My score was 140, good for me, still learning this games nuances. I drew & played 2 blues early on & then played 4 yellow birds later, all which I was able to capitalize on during the game. Maybe I’ve been lucky, but I really feel this 3-stack way of playing all expansions separate is paying off.

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