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Posts Tagged ‘warbler’

Another first for me yesterday morning in Parthenon, Arkansas; a Bay Breasted Warbler in Arkansas. I never saw one before; ever ! This guy was working semi-ripe Paw Paw trees; not sure if he was after the fruit or the insects feeding on the fruit.

 

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I went out early this morning and heard a Blue Winged Warbler calling from a perch. I found him just as the sun peaked out through the heavy clouds. Taken with a Canon 70D and a Canon 600mm Lens; three poses – click to enlarge:

 

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I watched her, a female American Redstart (a wood warbler) on what looks like day 2-3 of building her nest. She was relentless for the entire 2 hours I watched. I knew photographs would be difficult. There was shade and sun behind, she pulled bark of the vine inside the a bushy Box Elder. I had a slow lens at f / 5.6.  Autofocus was nearly impossible. It was a  last season dry vine and she instinctively knew how to strip the off strings from the  shell of the old vine. Mouthful after mouthful she flew to a nest she was building about 25 feet off the ground in an Elm tree 75-90 feet away:

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Taken 1 hours ago in the drizzle in Parthenon near thew Little Buffalo River; one of the most spectacular of the wood warblers; taken with a Canon 70D and a Canon EF400 f 5.6L:

 

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This morning I went out to the back shed. I always carry my birding camera. First thing i noticed was 2 small yellow birds high up in and walnut tree. There is an old Elm tree next to it. I made a “pishing” sound and they immediately came down to investigate. While the male watched me from 20 feet in the air the female seemed contented to glean insects form lower Elm leaves. They watched me for about 20 minutes.

The Parula is a small warbler of the upper tree canopy, the Northern Parula can be found in two rather distinct populations. The southern population nests primarily in hanging Spanish moss, while the northern population uses the similar-looking beard lichen. These are tropical birds from South and Central America that migrate up to Arkansas and Missouri to breed.

Adult Description

Vey small songbird.
Blue-gray hood and wings.
Yellow chest with black and reddish band across it.
White crescents above and below eyes.
Green back.
Two white wingbars.
Immature Description
Similar to female, but more green on upperparts.

The first 4 photos are of the Female and the second 4 of the male with his maroon-chestnut bib:

 

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While I was taking photos of the nest I saw the White Eyed Vireos building yesterday, I came across a pair of Black and White Warblers and got about 55 photos of the pair (not together). I took these photos with a Canon 50D with a EF400 f/5.6 L Lens at about 7:45 this morning.

The Black and White Warbler is one of the earliest-arriving migrant warblers, the Black-and-white Warbler’s thin, squeaky song is one of the first signs that spring birding has sprung. This crisply striped bundle of black and white feathers creeps along tree trunks and branches like a nimble nuthatch, probing the bark for insects with its slightly down-curved bill. Though you typically see these birds only in trees, they build their little cup-shaped nests in the leaf litter of forests across central and eastern North America.

Size & Shape
Black-and-white Warblers are medium-sized warblers (small songbirds). They have a fairly long, slightly downcurved bill. The head often appears somewhat flat and streamlined, with a short neck. The wings are long and the tail is short.

Color Pattern
These birds are boldly striped in black and white. Their black wings are highlighted by two wide, white wing bars. Adult males have more obvious black streaking, particularly on the underparts and the cheek. Females (especially immatures) are paler, with less streaking and usually a wash of buff on the flanks. The undertail coverts have distinctive large black spots.

Behavior
Black-and-white Warblers act more like nuthatches than warblers, foraging for hidden insects in the bark of trees by creeping up, down, and around branches and trunks. Despite their arboreal foraging habits, they nest on the ground at the bases of trees.

Habitat
Deciduous forest and mixed forest are the preferred summer habitats of Black-and-white Warblers, usually with trees of mixed ages that provide a variety of foraging substrates. On migration, look for them in any forest or woodlot. They winter in forests and forest edges from Florida to Colombia.

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On Wednesday, I made a trip to Pedestal Rocks in Arkansas. Even though it is quite a bit south of Parthenon, it looked like winter. There was very little green yet and very few windflowers. I did enjoy several Pine Warblers and Blue Gray Gnatcatchers, and a beautiful pair of  Yellow Throated Warblers. Using my Canon 50D and 400 and f/5.6 Lens I was able tot get 124 photographs of them:

Here are a few:

 

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I was lucky enough to get a look at a pair of warblers nest building on Monday this week. They were in a Little Buffalo River bottoms; I had my Canon 400mm DO IS lens on my Canon 7D; they were both curious about my whistle and came faily close to me. The Male has a black mask like a raccoon:

 

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Another sure sign of spring !!!

Of all the yellow yellow birds that show up every spring, the prettiest bumch are the Warbler species. They begin arriving about mid-March and continue through nesing in June. The Yellow-rumped warbler may stay all winter in NW Arkansas. By late March and early April, I begin to see Pine Warblers, Common Yellowthroats, Back and White Warblers, and American Redstarts, and Yellow Throated warblers, in mixed migrating groups. They are in molt at the time they arrive and don’t get their full striking colors until later in the spring.

Below is the 2nd Warbler species I have seen in 2013, the Pine Warbler:

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I got a clear shot at a migrating warbler this afternoon. This bird was in a flock with Northern Parulas (warblers also) and a few others species. Warblers are known to migrate in mixed flocks. The Yellow-rumped warblers frequently winter in southern Missouri and Arkansas; but since he/she was bunched in this migrating flock; I believe this warbler is moving up from the south.

Taken Canon 1DS (full frame) with a Canon 600mm f/4 L IS lens:

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