I don't think they are that bad. Sure, they aren't as good as they could have been, but if you have to use flash... that is what you'll get. I assume you used it because the shutter speed was too low (not enough natural light?)
In that first shot, I do agree that the white seems too bright, but the black in some places isn't washed out with light. Oh, and I too had had trouble adjusting to the bird being upside.... Gotta love how they'll hang any which way.
I think the more frustrating thing is that because the shutter speed was so low, being hand held introduced camara shake. Flashes are great for fill, but suck when they are over used. I've killed a few nice shots with them too.
ImKayd1 is right, if the camera supports it using flash exposure compensation (FEC) is the way to go. It lets you dial it back a bit so it isn't overpowering. I often do - 1/2 to -1 entire stop on the flash.
And those two that you like are really nice. But you know that by now!