Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Warbler Guy, is it unusual to see wood-warblers at backyard seed feeders? Wood-warblers at feeders I can expect to see?

Jerry (in Michigan).....Great question, as in your area this time of year I'd expect potential seed feeder sightings from a lonely, uncommon Pine Warbler or Yellow-rumped Warbler.

In the West along coastal California, it's not common, but Townsend's Warbler could show up along with Yellow-rumped.

Yellow-rumped subspecies in the lower 48 states —both Myrtle and Audubon's — are able to digest waxy coatings on seeds (such as privet and wax myrtle berries), unlike most other wood-warbler species....and they also seem to have hearty digestive juices to process seeds (as does Pine).

Otherwise, I have to admit in my 40 years of birding, I've never seen any other species at seed feeders.....though nectar feeders sometimes coax Cape May Warbler, among others.

I'm out to lead a birding tour soon to Bodega Bay, so wishing you the best.....Feel free to see my "Birding Tours" area at my web site: warblerwatch.com

Regards, Daniel Edelstein

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