5-Star Photography Tips
There are many websites devoted to bird photography (see the links below), each with its own take on the following:
Generally shoot at high shutter speeds, generally 1/1000 and above. If your subject is not moving, slower speeds between 1/400 and 1/800 may work. On the other ned of the spectrum, flying birds will need even higher speeds than 1/1000.
Try and have the sun behind you. Have your shadow point towards the bird.
Make sure that the main subject's eye is in focus.
Watch your backgrounds carefully. We often overlook the trash or bright areas behind the bird because we are so fixated on the subject.
Be patient, quiet and be still - Let the bird get used to you. Watch how it works the environment. Anticipate what it will do and where it will go next.
Editing considerations - don't zoom-in too close. Leave room to allow for post-editing subject positioning, leveling the horizon and to leave room for the bird to have space to move into.
eBird Descriptions of star ratings for photos
Audubon 10 Tips for Photographing Birds
Photographic Society of America (PSA) - Definition of Nature and Wildlife Photography (pdf)