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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warblers are migrating now all across the country. We had our first one today in our yard, singing its little trill song. What a happy feeling, heralding the beginning of the warbler migration. Warblers are probably my favorite group of birds, even though hawks are what got me into birding. Of all the bird groups, warblers are the most colorful and you can find just about every hue of the rainbow on them. Can't wait to see more.

We think if you want to learn warblers, start with Yellow-rumps, they are just about the most conspicuous, abundant warbler you'll see on migration. They winter in primarily the southern half of the country, then migrate to their breeding areas farther north.

The namesake bright yellow rump stands out and is a great clue, even in their fall plumage, which can be considerably duller. Look also for the little patch of yellow on their sides, visible in their spring plumage, not always there on fall birds. One great thing about warblers in spring is that they're at their most colorful, especially the males, and are easier to ID. You can't learn Yellow-rumps too well, so learn them from all angles. The better you know them, the more likely you are then to pick up something different, a new species of warbler for you to ID. You can very likely find Yellow-rumped Warblers in your yard if you have deciduous woods or brushy edges. So on sunny days go out and look and start your warbler learning.

Stokes Field Guide to Warblers

For more help learning warblers we have our Stokes Field Guide To Warblers (173 pp. full color photos) in which we cover all North American Warblers. We invented a special color tab system for the guide which makes it possible for you to look up any warbler by its colors. We wrote this guide because we wanted to make it quicker and easier for you to ID and enjoy this beautiful groups of birds. We sure enjoy them.

Photos © Lillian Stokes

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