Monday, August 17, 2015

Confusing Fall Warbler Quizz:

Hi folks, Well, ’tis the season for confusing fall warblers and what better way to start the season than with a little quiz (in preparation for the head-scratchers to come). I photographed this bird today in Winnipeg (two photographs stitched together). Can you identify the species?


  1. Hi everyone, so the correct answer to this is an immature Mourning Warbler. This is a VERY tricky bird and the photo does not show the birds large size well. One of the key features is the broken eye-ring, which is characteristic of this plumage of Mourning Warbler (and MacGillivray's Warbler). Many people were thrown by the yellow throat, which looks a lot like a Common Yellowthroat. Although in adult plumages, the throat of Mourning warbler is grey, immature plumages show a yellow throat and many birder forget that unusual feature. Therefore in the case of this bird, the features that identify our bird as an immature Mourning Warbler are a) large size, b) broken eye-ring, c) yellow on belly bleeding up into throat through the broken breast band, d) large bill. The most similar to this bird is Common Yellowthroat which has a very faint eye-ring and the yellow is strongest on throat but creamier whitish on the belly, which is the opposite of immature Mourning Warbler. Congratulations to all those who solved this most difficult confusing fall warbler quizz!

  2. I would say this is an immature female. Cool shots!


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