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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Kentucky Warbler, Hooded Warbler, Yellow-throated Warbler, oh my!

Life is good when you see the more southern breeding warblers coming into the Sanibel lighthouse on their migration. This morning we saw this Kentucky Warbler, male. Now that's a bird we don't see in New Hampshire where we're from.

Kentucky's like to skulk 

in the underbrush, so your'e lucky to get a good look, let alone photograph one in the dense vegetation at this location. What a cool bird!

This Yellow-throated Warbler had just crossed the Gulf of Mexico and landed in a tree next to us.
There are two subspecies of Yellow-throated warbler and here is how to tell them apart. dominica breeds from s.e. New Jersey to s. Florida; it has a yellow supraloral dash (just above the eyeline) and usually a yellow chin and throat (although the uppermost part of the chin may be white. The species pictured here is subspecies albilora; it is white above the lores and has a white chin and the white can extend slightly down the sides of the throat, as seen here. This subspecies breeds in the rest of the Yellow-throated Warbler range. 

Here's a close up view of white under and on the sides of the chin.

Such a dramatic coloring, with the bright yellow throat set off by the black.

This Hooded Warbler, male, was seen yesterday. 

You can see why it's called a Hooded Warbler. This is again a species that lays low in the understory. At the lighthouse, very few warblers sing or even call, unlike by the time they reach the mid and northern sections of the country, when they are singing. Hooded Warblers, however, can be located because they do give a call note, a metallic "chink."

These warblers breed mainly in the more southern to mid areas of the eastern part of the country. Look for them soon.


Janet and Aaron Kirk said...

These warbler shots are stunning, Lillian! It was nice to see you and Don at Lighthouse Park yesterday. We feel like we had a "Warbler Seminar," and we apreciate all the information you share!

Janet and Aaron Kirk

PS We have a nice photo of just the two of you from behind walking down the path.

Kevin said...

Thanks for all the beautiful warbler shots from Sanibel lighthouse. I've particularly enjoyed the Kentucky and Yellow-throated, two species that have not yet made it onto my life list.