Many of our migratory warblers seem to lead double lives, and the Cape May is a good example. Warblers that live high in the treetops generally have higher-pitched songs than those that live in the understory. Both members of the pair feed the young. Among the dazzling cohort of spring warblers, the first Cape May Warbler to arrive is a balm: its mossy green back, tiger-striped breast, and chestnut cheek patch make it unlike any other warbler. Members of this diverse group make up more than half of the bird species worldwide. Most are monogamous. If you find the information on BirdWeb useful, please consider supporting Seattle Audubon. Their songs are generally dry, unmusical, often complex whistles (“warbles”). Most North American warblers do not molt into a drab fall/winter plumage; the challenge posed to those trying to identify warblers in the fall results from looking at mostly juvenile birds. Passerine birds are divided into two suborders, the suboscines and the oscines. Warblers eat insects gleaned from foliage or captured in the air. Other plumages are duller; consult a field guide for the fine points of separating these from similar plumages of some of the other Dendroica warblers.The Cape May Warbler breeds in the boreal forests of Canada as well as in northernmost New England and the upper Midwest, and winters in the West Indies and along the Caribbean coast south to Honduras. This species was … In summer it eats insects, but during migration and winter it varies its diet with nectar from flowers and with juice that it obtains by piercing fruit. The Cape May warbler (Setophaga tigrina) is a species of New World warbler. Cape May Warbler. Its breeding range spans all but the westernmost parts of southern Canada, the Great Lakes region, and New England. Idaho also has two records, in September and January. This large group of small, brightly colored songbirds is a favorite of many birdwatchers. During the breeding season, the species lives remote from most human observers, in northern spruce-fir forests, where its nesting success is tied to its chief food, the spruce budworm caterpillar. Setophaga tigrina. However their brains are relatively large and their learning abilities are greater than those of most other birds. Basic Description. Among the dazzling cohort of spring warblers, the first Cape May Warbler to arrive is a balm: its mossy green back, tiger-striped breast, and chestnut cheek patch make it unlike any other warbler. In Washington, the tyrant flycatchers are the only suboscines; the remaining 27 families are oscines. Most of the North American members of this group are migratory, returning in the winter to the tropics where the family originated. The adult male in breeding plumage is brightly and distinctively patterned, with olive back, yellow rump, strongly streaked yellow breast, bold white wing patch, and yellow neck and face with chestnut around and behind the eye. The Cape May Warbler breeds in the boreal forests of Canada as well as in northernmost New England and the upper Midwest, and winters in the West Indies and along the Caribbean coast south to Honduras. North American males are typically brightly colored, many with patches of yellow. During the breeding season, the species lives remote from most human observers, in northern spruce-fir forests, where its nesting success is tied to its chief food, the spruce budworm caterpillar. The English name refers to Cape May, New Jersey, where George Ordcollected the specimen later described by Alexander Wilson. Dullest immature females are entirely gray with indistinct streaking below, usually with a hint of paler neck sides and greenish edges to wing feathers. Warblers that nest in the understory tend to have pink legs and feet, while those that inhabit the treetops usually have black legs and feet. Bright adult males are yellow below with black streaks, orange cheek patch, and white patch on wing. Plumages variable. Revised November 2007, View full list of Washington State's Species of Special Concern. Washington’s two accepted records were in September 1974 at Bellingham (Whatcom County) and February 2005 in Spokane (Spokane County). It breeds in northern North America. Oscines are capable of more complex song, and are considered the true songbirds. Most are small. Cape May Warbler is accidental in British Columbia away from its nesting grounds.

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