This article presents research findings of bird remains from 22 archaeological sites of the 5th–17th centuries AD from the Middle Volga region of Russia. We identified 53 species: 50 wild species and three domestic. Remains of domestic chickens were most numerous. The predominance of bones of domestic birds and the variety of sizes at most archaeological sites of the 10th–17th centuries AD demonstrated that the people of the Middle Volga region had already developed domestic poultry keeping. Both domestic and wild birds were diverse and played an important role in the economy of the human populations in historic times in the Middle Volga region. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.