Male Cape May Warbler:
The weather forecast was very promising, so Mary Lou and I headed out early to Lippold Park, located on the east bank of the Fox River in Batavia, Illinois. We hoped to see warblers, and we were not disappointed. In addition to those pictured here, other brightly-colored birds we also saw included Chestnut-sided, Palm, Yellow-rumped (Myrtle) and Blue-winged Warblers, Yellow Warblers, Common Yellowthroats, Northern Cardinals and Baltimore Orioles.
Ornamental fruit trees were in full bloom at Lippold Park:
A Cape May Warbler was our most exciting find, as neither of us had ever seen a spring male. Although it is named after a place in New Jersey (where the first specimen was collected), they are actually very rarely seen there. No surprise that I missed seeing one, despite growing up in North Jersey. We had seen them before in Illinois, but only in drab fall plumage.
Mary Lou had only seen one Rose-breasted Grosbeak previously, as she started birding when we lived outside this bird’s established range, in New Mexico. They are a delight for the eyes!
Male Rose-breasted Grosbeak:
A female Rose-breasted Grosbeak “stood by her man” as he posed for our camera:
Another look at the male Cape May Warbler:
This Nashville Warbler did not allow me to take a very good photo. This is the best view I obtained of this active and reclusive bird:
A Wood Thrush lurked in the dark understory (I had to lighten the photo with the limited photo-editing program on my laptop):