Blue-winged Warbler

SCIENTIFIC NAME: Vermivora cyanoptera

Blue-winged Warbler

The Blue-winged Warbler is a small, well-proportioned bird with a sharp and pointed bill.

Compared to other warblers, the rather heavy black bill and eyeline give them a pointy-headed look.

Both sexes measure about 4.3 – 4.7 inches in length, with a wingspan of 5.9 inches and weight of 9 grams.

Males have bright yellow head and underparts, white or yellowish-white undertail coverts, black eye-line, blue- gray wings with two white wing bars, greenish-yellow back and nape. Legs are blackish.

Females are duller overall. In both sexes, bill is long, thin and very pointed. Extensive white on tail is visible from below.

Immature birds are similar, but duller than adults.

Main song is a wheezy “beee-bzzz”, the second note lower.

Alternate song is longer and more complex, consisting of buzzy notes followed by a variable number of short musical notes.

Also a long high buzz with twittering notes at start and finish. It also utters a sharp “tisk” call note.

Feeds on insects, beetles, moths and larvae, flies, bugs, grasshoppers, crickets, and spiders.

Inhabits brushy meadows, second growth woodlands, abandoned farmlands and forest clearings.

It breeds at forest and field edges, often shaded by large trees.

Breeds in Central Midwest to east Coast of United States, and southern Ontario.

Winters in Central America, Mexico to Panama. Rare in Caribbean, but newly wintering in Bermuda.

The female builds the nest on or near the ground, at base of berry bushes and other shrubby plants, in clumps of grasses or weeds.

It is round, sprawling, narrow, deep basket of dead leaves, grasses, and bark shreds, lined with grass.

She lays 4 - 5 white eggs with brown dots. Incubation lasts 11 - 12 days.


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