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May 2024
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Spring warblers that might have been
Filed under: General, Birding & Outdoors, Florida & SE US, Illinois, Birding "Patches"
Posted by: Ken @ 8:24 pm

This spring, warbler migration was painfully dull both in our part of south Florida and near our second home in northeastern Illinois. We departed for Illinois at the beginning of May, just when numbers of warblers had started building up there in previous years. Now that summer has arrived and it is a rainy day, all I can do is remember last year and look forward to fall migration.

The Prairie Warbler was quite common in Florida this spring, but we have never yet seen one in Illinois.

Prairie Warbler 2-20110404

Some of the warblers we saw this spring both in Florida and in Illinois were…

Yellow-rumped Warbler (photographed in Illinois)

Yellow-rumped Warbler preening 20110506

This Western subspecies of Palm Warbler, common in Florida, is the dull-colored form…

Palm Warbler 20110323

…as compared to this Eastern “Yellow” Palm Warbler, photographed in Illinois


Black-and-white Warbler (in Florida)

Black-and-White Warbler 20110406

Yellow Warbler (in Illinois)

Yellow Warbler 3-20090609

Now I’m remembering some warblers we had hoped to see– but didn’t see at all this spring, either in Florida or Illinois.

Past spring migrations in Florida, we have seen…

Black-throated Blue Warbler

Black-throated Blue Warbler 20111020

Blackpoll Warbler

Blackpoll Warbler male 20110414

Northern Parula

Northern Parula male 2-20110325

During past spring migrations in Illinois we have gotten…

Bay-breasted Warbler

Bay-breasted Warbler 20090502

Here is another view of a Bay-breasted Warbler

Bay-breasted Warbler 20090503

Magnolia Warbler

Magnolia Warbler 2-20110510

Northern Waterthrush

Northern Waterthrush Singing 20090504

Louisiana Waterthrush

Louisiana Waterthrush 2-20100430

Cape May Warbler


Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler 20100827

Blackburnian Warbler

Blackburnian Warbler 20110509

American Redstart

American Redstart 20100510

This Nashville Warbler is actually flying– I accidentally caught him at an instant when his wings were closed

Nashville Warbler (Vermivora ruficapilla) in flight 20110504

18 Responses to “Spring warblers that might have been”

  1. Laurence Butler Says:
    Marvelous shots Ken, you do these warblers proud! On your list here, I got to see 1 species in Arizona–betcha can guess which one too. It was a very weird spring. Despite the warmer weather, it seemed like numbers and diversity is down all over, except for some waterfowl sticking around much longer than usual.
  2. Boom & Gary Says:
    Stunning Warbler series!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.
  3. Dina J Says:
    You’ve got some beautiful shots of these little guys. Several of these I saw for the first time at Fort Desoto in April. It’s so hard getting good shots of them.
  4. HansHB Says:
    Fantastic shot of the “take-off” before the wings carry it further-
  5. Mick Says:
    A great series of photos of all the warblers. An amazing capture in the last one!
  6. saun Says:
    Very pretty birds that last shot is hilarious made me laugh.
  7. I'd Rather B Birdin Says:
    That last one looks magical….I love ‘em all, but the one I favor is the LA. waterthrush!!! MERLIN FALCON
  8. Connie Smiley Says:
    What wonderful warblers! That last one is an amazing capture.
  9. Andrew Says:
    Wonderful little birds to see…all of them. If I had to choose a favourite it would have to be the last shot.
  10. Eileen Says:
    Gorgeous collection of warbler photos. I loved them all.
  11. TexWisGirl Says:
    wow! your photos are spectacular! puts my pitiful yellow warbler to shame (but i’m still happy to have seen it!) :)
  12. NatureStop Says:
    WOW!!! what a variety of wablers…love the one in the air.Thanks for sharing.Have a great day! Shantana
  13. Hilke Breder Says:
    Lovely warbler series! I am really envious.
  14. Pat Says:
    Incredibly beautiful shots, Ken!
  15. ken schneider Says:
    Thanks to all! The spring warbler season seemed to have been tough, but with notable exceptions such as Magee Marsh and SW Florida coast. @ Laurence– of the bunch, the Yellow-rumped should have been present in Arizona, but likely it would be the Audubon’s form rather than our Myrtle subspecies. The others are pretty much eastern species, though who knows what might turn up during migration. There was a Black-throated Gray Warbler in Florida this spring.
  16. Sallie (FullTime-Life) Says:
    Thanks for sharing your memories! Beautiful birds and beautiful photos every one. Had a comment from someone that the storks in FL were having a hard time b/c of the flooding from Debby. Hope they’ll be OK when we go back next winter.
  17. ken schneider Says:
    @Sallie– That is sad, as the Wood Storks in south Florida suffered general nesting failures this spring and for the previous three seasons. They did nest with some success up to the north. I hope their young were far enough advanced to survive the storm, although flooding will dilute their food supply and make the water too deep for foraging. The adults will have to fly great distances to find suitable fishing areas and the young can starve.
  18. lessandra Says:
    This is first time visiting your blog and I must say your warbler series is beautiful! Some fantastic shots. I will return!

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