Friday, March 09, 2012

Northern Parula Has Returned

Northern Parula Warblers (Setophaga americana) returned overnight and are now adding their songs to the swamp chorus in the Francis Beidler Forest!

Male Northern Parula - Mark Musselman
During our walk yesterday, we did not hear anything resembling a Northern Parula.  The normal arrival time at Beidler Forest for this species is mid-March, so this year's group is about a week early.  This bird winters in the Caribbean and central Mexico to Central America.  Once they have claimed a breeding territory here, they will build a nest in the ubiquitous Spanish Moss (Tillandsia usneoides) hanging from the trees.  The same nest site will often be used, though the high winds the other week may have blown down some of those sites.

Will the Prothonotary Warblers be early too?  We'll keep checking!

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