Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Sitting Pretty

The opening day of September continued to be a nice productive time of year for birding at Lake Erie Metropark. Among the 10 species of warblers this morning was this Chestnut-sided Warbler.

"Wait a minute!" you're saying, right? "This bird does not have chestnut sides!"

No, it doesn't. So when does a Chestnut-sided Warbler not have chestnut on it's sides? When it is a first fall female! (This bird was born this year and is in it's first fall of life. Get it?) Check out the totally clean gray underparts, white eye ring, green back and yellow wingbars. That combo of field marks is a knock down. The park was full of them this morning.

Needless to say, she was quite cooperative.


Julie said...

Many first fall males and some adult females also lack chestnut. Bird banders are warned that only the dullest birds with the shortest wings (as measured in the hand, of course) can be sexed (as female).

Paul said...

I was simply using the "Peterson Guide to Warblers" to make the call. Leave it to bird banders to take all the fun out of everything...... :)