I suspect that one of the reasons you received little response is that it is difficult to give a simple answer. The key is that you said stationary and that is important because things are completely different if the animal is in motion. Also birds present special problems that are different from most other animals.
Many good points have been presented already. It should be added that no bird or other animal photo is considered to be good if the eyes are out of focus. this usually requires that yoou use a spot focus. If you are close to the animal, so that it fills a large part of the frame that may mean focusing on the eye and then locking focus while you recenter the camera.