Thursday, October 29, 2015

Warbler Guy, where can I read about nesting warblers? Get warbler information? Learn about warbler migration for each warbler species; Identify mystery warblers by reading about them?

Syd, you cannot go wrong by visiting:

This site features a comprehensive list of more than 720 North American species, with all of this area's Parulidae (warbler family) members present.

Yes, it costs money: $42 per year or $100 for three years.

Thumbs up. Way up. 

2. The Warbler Guide (2012, Tom Stephenson & Scott Whittle, Princeton University Press)

Comprehensive. A-1. Look on Amazon or many blog site that review this excellent field guide.

Email me with any warbler questions, of course, as I read this guide regularly....and I'm glad to answer your warbler questions:  danieledelstein@ (Feel free to see my "Warbler Tips ID Charts" at my Birding Links area at my home page.)

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Is it possible to distinguish the call notes of Audubon’s vs. Myrtle Yellow-rumped Warbler during the non-breeding season where they occur together?


Seeing is believing when identifying (patiently!) an Audubon’s vs. Myrtle Yellow-Rumped Warbler.

But sometimes you only hear an obvious Yellow-rumped Warbler chip note.

At least I do.

Then, the Mind Game is to ask myself: Is that an Audubon’s or Myrtle subspecies within the species of Yellow-rumped?

Difficult decision (!)

And consider your antenna first-rate, premium, high-octane — if you can tell the difference between these two call notes and confidently exclaim: “That’s an Audubon’s” (Or “Eureka, trust me: that’s a Myrtle chip note.”

(Above: An Audubon's Yellow-rumped Warbler subspecies (in breeding plumage) appears in the top photo. A non-breeding view of a Myrtle Yellow-rumped Warbler subspecies is below the Audubons'.)


Why do you need to tell one chip note vs. the other to know if it’s an Audubon’s vs. a Myrtle?

Because, of course, most Yellow-rumpeds are NOT singing during the non-breeding season, but you do often hear their loud chip or call notes from October – April when they’re in my area (San Francisco Bay Area where I am a Birding Guide in Marin County).

In many cases you can hear how the Myrtle (one of the subspecies of the Yellow-rumped Warbler species) has a flatter and softer chip note than the Audubon’s.

The “ch” component of the call note is weaker for the Myrtle and it often gives many calls in rapid succession.

However, be careful. Intergrades (individuals that display visual characteristics specific to both Audubon’s and Myrtle) may announce call notes of the other subspecies. In other words, it’s possible to see a bird that looks like an Audubon’s, but it’s call note sounds like a Myrtle. This individual could likely be an intergrade.

Of course, once you hear a Yellow-rumped chip note, go find it.

Then you can truly tell the difference in the two subspecies by their appearance: In general, the Myrtle male is told by its white throat that wraps farther around toward the back of the head/nape....while the Audubon’s male has a yellow throat. Note the Myrtle often also displays a slight white supercilium or eyebrow at the front of the head, whereas the Audubon’s head is plain and gray throughout.

Questions? Let the Warbler Guy know, please:

My web site for warbler questions, warbler information, warbler quizzes:

My bird guiding in California and birding tours in California information: via the Birding Tours button at the home page.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Any suggestions for warbler identification tips, Warbler Guy? I know that's general to ask, but identification of warblers is simply challenging #@%#!

I'll be glad to share tips....Let me do so more extensively soon, but for now, please note:
(Graphic, below, courtesy of, via Univ. of Princeton Press that published the amazing and worthwhile-to-purchase: "The Warbler Guide." Thumbs up.)

Warbler Tips Identification Chart

Not sure of a wood-warber's identification?

It looks similar to another species?

Feel free to see my "Warbler Tips Identification" Chart that appears as a button at my Web site: