Some common warblers easy to spot

Some of our warblers, here in the north, are quite easy to identify due to their special marking here, or bright colour there.
Here are a couple which are fairly common and shouldn’t be too hard to identify:
•Bay-breasted Warbler (Dendroica castanea)
Not much yellow or green on this fellow at all. His throat, breast, and sides are real chestnut brown, and so is the top of his head. The sides of his head are jet black but his belly is white.
Tail is black with prominent white ends. Back is greyish with smudgy black spots.
As usual, the female is much duller. The chestnut parts are not nearly so reddish, and her black face is not nearly so black. But the rest her is just about the same.
The Bay-breasted breeds all the way from northern Alberta to Nova Scotia. It likes evergreens, with some hardwoods thrown in. It nests about 15 feet up or so.
This is another warbler which seems to be very happy with the second growth forests.
•Chestnut-sided warbler (Dendroica pennsylvanica)
Here is another which is rather brightly coloured, and not too hard to get to know. The general appearance of the spring male is that of a neat little bird, with mainly olive-green coloured back and wings.
Top of his head is bright yellow, and underparts are white, but the real clincher for this fellow is a band of bright chestnut red all the way along its sides.
The female is marked in just about the same way, only the colours are duller.
These warblers do not care for the deep forests at all, nesting in bushes or quite young trees. This species is one of several which have benefitted greatly from the destruction of the original forests.
They are very fond of new growth, whether it is from logging, abandoned farms, old cleared areas, and so on.
Actually, they were not numerous at all in the early 1800s. Now they are found all over the eastern states and provinces. Some of our wildlife does benefit greatly from logging.
Like all warblers, these live almost entirely on insects–that is their goal in life. They eat the adult insects, as well as the eggs, pupae, and larvae. So they are here only when the insects are here.
Arrival in Northwestern Ontario would be around the middle of May, with departure probably in mid-September. A late frost in the spring, or an early one in the fall, can do a lot of harm to these most valuable little birds.
The warblers are our greatest ally in the protection of the northern woods.

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