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Okefenokee Swamp and Prothonotary Warbler

The Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge was set aside to protect the fabled Okefenokee Swamp of Georgia and Florida. Tall cypress trees and Spanish moss give the swamp a prehistoric appearance. The Prothonotary Warbler is one of the most striking of the swamp’s denizens. Having wintered in the... read more »


The New Jersey Pine Barrens

In southern New Jersey lies a region known as the Pine Barrens, home to many birds, including this Great Crested Flycatcher. With broad tracts of pine forest interspersed with grassland and shrubland, the Pine Barrens remain one of the largest expanses of green in the Northeast, supporting a... read more »


Swainson's Warbler

On a fine May morning in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, a song issues from within a rhododendron thicket. It's a Swainson's Warbler — one of North America's shyest birds. These birds forage quietly on the ground, flipping over leaves to expose and capture insects. They scurry away, calling... read more »

Topics & Themes:  vocalization

Prairie Warblers - An Early Successional Species

Despite their name, Prairie Warblers nest in tree farms of recently planted pines, in fields overgrown with scattered shrubs, and in clearings under power lines. Biologists call these “early successional” habitats. They’re characterized by plants that are the first to return to land altered by... read more »


Magical Warbler Moment

Imagine watering your garden on a hot August day, when a small yellow-and-gray warbler flutters into the spray and begins taking a shower. The Yellow-rumped Warbler, probably mid-way through its fall migration, is unafraid. Yellow-rumped Warblers use many types of habitat. They breed high up in... read more »


Audubon's Yellow-rumped Warbler

Warblers can be hard to spot. But unlike many warblers that ply the tops of the trees, the Yellow-rumped Warbler is happy filtering through the lower branches of trees, providing flightless mortals with half a chance of seeing it. The Yellow-rumped Warbler is one of the most common warblers... read more »

Topics & Themes:  ornithology

Wilson's Warbler Migration

The Wilson's Warbler is soon to head south, not to return until spring, one of many songbird migrants returning to the Central American tropics for the colder months. He will fly after dark to avoid the threat posed by hawks and falcons. He'll take up precisely the same winter quarters as he did... read more »

Topics & Themes:  migration

Wilson's Warbler near Summer's End

By early August, the rich yellow of the feathers of the Wilson's Warbler seems to flash in every forest thicket. Despite predators and weather, many pairs of adults have raised four young, which now flit about on their own. The young males hatched this spring learned their father's songs this... read more »

Topics & Themes:  migration

Wilson's Warbler Part III

Back in September, BirdNote began following a tiny Wilson's Warbler as it migrated south to the tropics. We visited the warbler again in December, on its wintering grounds on a shade-grown coffee farm in Belize. As April arrives, the sprightly bird is migrating northward, with males typically... read more »

Topics & Themes:  migration

Wilson's Warbler Part IV

A week of non-stop singing attracts a female Wilson's Warbler to the male's territory at the edge of the forest. The female alone builds a nest, concealing it in mossy ground at the base of a shrub, or perhaps in a tussock of grass. She lays four eggs, which she incubates for 12 days. When the... read more »

Topics & Themes:  migration, nesting