Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Birds in Review Part XXIV 'A Bird Parade' Black-throated Green Warbler

We flew into the new year together with my first 'Birds In Review' post and I cannot believe we will be flying into spring together soon! Twenty four posts later and I am still finding birds, from my archives of the last two years, to share with you. The Flower Hill Farm 'Bird Parade' continues with a darling songbird aptly called the Black-throated Green Warbler (Dendroica virens). These images of a male donning his black bib are from late summer two years ago. The Viburnum has already formed its flower buds for the following years blooms. 

This is a very curious little bird. The day I captured these portraits the Black-throated Green Warbler was not content to eye me back from afar. He flew from the Viburnum, where he was perched in the first two photos, over into the Crabapple tree, to be closer, to where I was standing at my barn studio door. 
After observing me from that vantage point, the little fellow then flew or bolted over even closer!

The Black-throated Green Warbler landed right in front of me in a Lilac bush and peeked out from beneath a leaf.

Slowly he came out from under his cover . . .  closer . . . 

closer . . . 


Here he  is only a couple of feet away! The intrigued Black-throated Green Warbler may have wanted to know just who or what this creature (myself) with a big black eye was! Honestly my camera was no competition to his lovely black throat.

Last summer I captured this female ( I think) Black-throated Green Warbler, while she was gleaning for insects in a Crabapple tree. The sexes are very similar, but her throat is more white. Both male and female will have a white belly, two wing bars and have a yellow face with an olive green back.

She seemed a bit weary and more wary of my presence. It is very hard for me to determine the sex. 

Determining their voice is another matter all together and much easier! The Black-throated Green Warbler has a unique song that is describe as a "buzzy" "zee-zee-zee-zoo-zee" or  "zoo-zee-zoo-zoo-zee" (the latter version is more for his rivals!) Their voice is high pitched and rather insect like with the scratchy zoo zees! They are enthusiastic singers sharing their songs all through the breeding season. Imagine all of the warblers and other birds I am sharing being in the garden at the same time. It is so wonderful to have their colorful forms and fluid songs all about the gardens.

The Black-throated Green Warbler loves a coniferous forest and his kind breed all over the northeast and into Canada. I am fortunate to have a forest, open fields and shrubby gardens, which is a winning combination for a diverse variety of wildlife and just the sort of habitat many birds thrive in. These birds over-winter in Central and South America. Southern gardeners will be seeing them migrating through soon. 

This might be a young Black-throated Green Warbler, for so often immature birds are quite bold and enjoy freely exploring their new independence and worlds. I am always delighted for the opportunity to eye them closer too. I look forward to hearing their easy to recognize songs this spring!

Winter lingers on here, but graciously brings us warming temperatures, which can creates mysterious fog during some days. There has been a bit of a distraction outside the doors . . . my view from where I work . . .  while I have been writing, as well as, searching for and editing photographs.

As I have been working on this post, the Bohemian Waxwings have been all a chatter and flying about from the Black Cherry to the Crabapple in rather a frenzied manner. They have been creating quite a commotion . . .  swooshing in . . . then grabbing a few apples and flying away quickly back to the Cherry. More than sixty birds were filling the top of the remaining canopy of 'Michael's Tree' merrily murmuring to one another. They are adding a wonderful sound to the quiet winter landscape. It must be nearly spring, for they are so excited and perhaps will be moving on in a few days. It has been a joy to have such a large flock roosting in the large White Pine to the north of the barn and feeding in the Crabapple Orchard all winter.

Today as I finally finish this post, the fog is gone as are the Bohemian Waxwings. It is a bright sunny day and I hear the Bluebirds singing! 
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