Migrants and the Lawrence's Warbler - the one that got away 9-3-16

September 04, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

A good cold front pushed in on Tuesday, bringing us .76" of much needed rain. It also brought in warblers! About 8:30 on Wednesday morning, a warbler was foraging in the oak right off the deck just above eye level, not even 10 feet out from the window. A young hummingbird was hassling it. Wow, I was surprised to see it and confirmed with binoculars - a hybrid Lawrence's Warbler. It looked like a female Golden-winged Warbler with a complete wash of soft yellow over it and deep yellow wing bars. Plate 3 in Peterson's Warblers shows it at bottom right, but this bird was not as sooty as that drawing. I watched it in the oak, then it moved to a rough-leaved dogwood.  I grabbed the camera to go out and then watched as it just went deeper into the thicket. I have not seen this bird again and did not get a photo of it, and believe me, I tried. There are many variations of Blue-winged X Golden-winged hybrid birds. The Lawrence's Warbler is the rarer type because it is a backcross. This phenomenon is explained a bit more here:




So, yes. It got away. Sightings like this really keep me interested in birds!! We just never know what might pop in, especially during migration. I am just glad the bird found our yard and was able to find food here. There were other birds here on Wednesday, like this Orange-crowned Warbler and a normal looking female Golden-winged Warbler. 



Use your imagination and put a soft yellow wash of color all over this bird - that's what the Lawrence's Warbler looked like.


Golden-winged Warbler female 8-31-16Golden-winged Warbler female 8-31-16


It was a real feeding frenzy with these birds working feverishly to find caterpillars to fuel them on to the south. On Thursday, more showed up. There were several Black-throated Green warblers.


Black-throated Green Warbler 9-1-16Black-throated Green Warbler 9-1-16


A Black and White Warbler found insects in the bark of this snag.


Black and White Warbler 9-1-16Black and White Warbler 9-1-16


A first year American Redstart checked out the bubbler.


American Redstart 9-1-16American Redstart 9-1-16


A Magnolia Warbler foraged in this Spicebush.


Magnolia Warbler 9-1-16Magnolia Warbler 9-1-16

This Bay-breasted Warbler was in a small elm, a favorite tree for migrants to find food on. 


Bay-breasted Warbler 9-1-16Bay-breasted Warbler 9-1-16

A Chestnut-sided Warbler finally got a chance to bathe later in the afternoon.


Chestnut-sided Warbler 9-1-16Chestnut-sided Warbler 9-1-16


There are more migrants still to come! To see all the photos of birds since the last post, look in the 2016 Birds gallery beginning here:




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