Thursday, January 17, 2019

Common Yellowthroat in Amherst in January!

Common Yellowthroat, Rail trail, Amherst, MA, Jan 17, 2018
Common Yellowthroat, Rail trail, Amherst, MA, Jan 17, 2018
My efforts to find late season warblers around here paid off again this cold morning when I had brief looks at a Common Yellowthroat off the rail trail in Amherst.  I have never had this species in the county in January but it was certainly on my radar as I was working through a frosty marsh area.  It popped into view briefly and never showed itself again and did not make any calls at all the entire time I was there.  I tried to get better photos but the bird never showed itself again after popping up briefly.  There are few records of this species in any county in western Massachusetts during the January-February time period although this year does appear to be a good one for them as one was reported in Hadley on January 1st and James Smith has had one continuing up in Northfield until at least January 9th.  The only other records I can find in the area include one in Amherst on Jan 13, 2007, one in Turner's Falls on Jan 1, 2012 and another in Stockbridge on Jan 28, 2007.  I will be checking up on the bird again in the future but the upcoming heavy snow and bitter cold do not look good for its continued presence.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Yellow rumped Warbler in East Meadows


Yellow rumped Warbler 'myrtle', East Meadows, Northampton, MA, Jan 15, 2019
Yellow rumped Warbler 'myrtle', East Meadows, Northampton, MA, Jan 15, 2019
Yellow rumped Warbler 'myrtle', East Meadows, Northampton, MA, Jan 15, 2019
Now that I have returned from the tropics (for a short time anyway) I have been trying to find any lingering warblers in Hampshire County while catching up with more typical species.  There was a Common Yellowthroat reported in Hadley several days ago but it appears to have moved on.  I have put in a concerted effort to try to find a warbler and my effort paid off this morning when I found a Yellow rumped Warbler 'myrtle' in the East Meadows.  Last year was the first year I was able to find a warbler in January around here and I was happy to find another this year.  It looked to be in an area with enough food to sustain it through the winter and I will check up on it periodically to see if it makes it through.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Costa Rica warblers on the latest trip down there (with two new ones for my Costa Rica list!)


Golden winged Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Dec 31, 2018
Tennessee Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Dec 31, 2018
Chestnut sided Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Dec 31, 2018
Black and White Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Dec 31, 2018
On the final day of 2018 I was once again down in Costa Rica at the Rio Magnolia Lodge where I had a half dozen warbler species to end the year (Golden winged Warbler, Black and White Warbler, Tennessee Warbler, Mourning Warbler, Chestnut sided Warbler and Buff rumped Warbler).
Gray crowned Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 2, 2019
MacGillivray's Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 1, 2019
Chestnut sided Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 2, 2019
Mourning Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 3, 2019
The new year started as the last one ended with us down in Costa Rica at the Rio Magnolia Lodge. The first day of the new year started off with me adding a new warbler (and new species) to my Costa Rica list when I found a juvenile MacGillivray's Warbler at the lodge. In addition to the MacGillivray's Warbler I found four more species of warblers the first day of the year.
Prothonotary Warbler, Hacienda Baru NWR, Costa Rica, Jan 4, 2019
Prothonotary Warbler, Hacienda Baru NWR, Costa Rica, Jan 4, 2019
MacGillivray's Warbler, Hacienda Baru NWR, Costa Rica, Jan 4, 2019
American Redstart, Hacienda Baru NWR, Costa Rica, Jan 4, 2019
On the fourth we headed down to the Pacific Coast to Hacienda Baru where I picked up two new warbler species for the trip: Prothonotary Warbler and Northern Waterthrush. Right before we left I found a MacGillivray's Warbler, which is apparently unusual for the area. There were also a number of Chestnut sided Warblers and Tennessee Warblers plus a single male American Redstart and a single Mourning Warbler.

Kentucky Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 6, 2019
Golden winged Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 6, 2019
Chestnut sided Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 5, 2019
Yellow Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 6, 2019
Buff rumped Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 8, 2019
Buff rumped Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 8, 2019
The remainder of the trip was spent around the lodge property with the a few new warbler species seen for the trip including my first Kentucky Warbler in Costa Rica, Yellow Warblers and Worm eating Warbler. The most warbler species I had in a single day was ten on January 6, all at the lodge.

Overall for the trip I found a total of 14 species of warbler which included the following species: Worm eating Warbler, Northern Waterthrush, Golden winged Warbler, Black and White Warbler, Prothonotary Warbler, Tennessee Warbler, Gray crowned Yellowthroat, MacGillivray's Warbler, Mourning Warbler, Kentucky Warbler, American Redstart, Yellow Warbler, Chestnut sided Warbler and Buff rumped Warbler....a great start to 2019! As typical for the area of Costa Rica we were in the most abundant warbler species were Chestnut sided Warbler and Tennessee Warbler. I got photos of almost all the species seen as well as a few recordings.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

End of year wrap up

Pink headed Warbler, Rincon Suizo, Tecpan, Guatemala, Feb 9, 2018
Yet another year is now just about over and it was another great year of warblers for me.  I finished the year with a total of 51 species of warblers with several being new ones for me including Chiriqui Yellowthroat, Crescent chested Warbler, Golden browed Warbler, Pink headed Warbler, Goldman's Warbler, Red faced Warbler and Fan tailed Warbler.  I have now seen a total of 75 warbler species as I continue on my quest to see them all.  There are more details on warblers overall, by month and in Hampshire County at the bottom of the post.

January started out incredibly cold with record cold for the first week that made it feel like the arctic.  Despite the extreme cold I managed to turn up a Yellow rumped Warbler at Arcadia on January 2nd (my first warbler record in the county in January)
Chiriqui Yellowthroat, San Vito Airport marshes, San Vito Costa Rica, Jan 18, 2018

Common Yellowthroat, San Vito Airport marshes, Costa Rica, Jan 18, 2018
Chiriqui Yellowthroat habitat, San Vito Airport marshes, Costa Rica, Jan 18, 2018


Rufous capped Warbler, Casa Botanica, San Vito, Costa Rica, Jan 18, 2018
Slate throated Redstart, Casa Botanica, San Vito, Costa Rica, Jan 18, 2018

Collared Redstart, Savegre Lodge, San Gerardo de Dota, Costa Rica, Jan 16, 2018
Wilson's Warbler, Savegre Lodge, San Gerardo de Dota, Costa Rica, Jan 16, 2018

Chestnut sided Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 17, 2018
Mourning Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 23, 2018
Golden winged Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 23, 2018
Buff rumped Warbler, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 20, 2018
Gray crowned Yellowthroat, Rio Magnolia Lodge, Costa Rica, Jan 21, 2018
The middle of January found us making another trip down to Costa Rica which produced a total of 20 warbler species with the highlight being a new warbler species for me, Chiriqui Yellowthroat, down near the Panama border near the town of San Vito...a species I have wanted to get down there to see and finally succeeded in finding.  Chiriqui Yellowthroat is considered a separate species by some sources (including myself) while others consider it a subspecies of Olive crowned Yellowthroat.  I also found a Worm eating Warbler at Rio Magnolia Lodge, which was a new warbler species for me in Costa Rica (bringing my total there to 30 species). The most numerous warbler species was about a tie between Tennessee Warbler and Chestnut sided Warbler (nice to see larger than typical numbers of Tennessee Warblers which corresponds nicely with the above normal numbers seen around here during the fall migration).
Pink headed Warbler, Unicornio Azul Lodge, Guatemala, Feb 10, 2018

Crescent chested Warbler, Rincon Suzio trails, Guatemala, Feb 9, 2018

Golden browed Warbler, Rincon Suzio trails, Guatemala, Feb 9, 2018

Goldman's Warbler, Todos Santos Regional Municipal Park, Guatemala, Feb 10, 2018

Red faced Warbler, Finca el Pilar, Guatemala, Feb 11, 2018

Fan tailed Warbler, La Reunion resort, Guatemala, Feb 11, 2018
Rufous capped Warbler (Chestnut capped subspecies), La Reunion resort, Guatemala, Feb 11, 2018

Golden crowned Warbler (Stripe crowned subspecies), Finca el Pilar, Guatemala, Feb 11, 2018

Ovenbird, Finca el Pilar, Guatemala, Feb 11, 2018
Tennessee Warbler, Finca el Pilar, Guatemala, Feb 11, 2018
Nashville Warbler, Finca el Pilar, Guatemala, Feb 12, 2018
Magnolia Warbler, La Reunion Resort, Guatemala, Feb 12, 2018
Townsend's Warbler, Unicornio Azul Lodge, Guatemala, Feb 11, 2018
Wilson's Warbler, Finca el Pilar, Guatemala, Feb 11, 2018
Slate throated Redstart, Rincón Suizo, Tecpan, Guatemala, Feb 9, 2018
I took another trip down to the tropics in early February with my destination this time being Guatemala.  The trip was primarily a search for a variety of warblers (both full species and local subspecies that could be split at some point). The eight species and subspecies I was searching for included Crescent chested Warbler, Goldman's Warbler (considered a full species by some but a subspecies of Yellow rumped Warbler by others), Fan tailed Warbler, Golden browed Warbler, Stripe crowned Warbler (a subspecies of Golden crowned Warbler as of now), Red faced Warbler, Pink headed Warbler and Chestnut capped Warbler (a subspecies of Rufous capped Warbler and a subspecies I have seen before in Costa Rica but thought I would try for it again).  Over the course of the trip we managed to find every target and get at least marginal photos of all of them.  Besides the warblers mentioned above we found many others bringing the total number of warbler species for the trip up to 23. The warblers seen during the trip included the following species: Ovenbird, Worm eating Warbler, Blue winged Warbler, Black and White Warbler, Crescent chested Warbler, Tennessee Warbler, Nashville Warbler, MacGillivray's Warbler, Magnolia Warbler, Yellow Warbler, Yellow rumped Warbler (Audubon's subspecies), Goldman's Warbler, Townsend's Warbler, Hermit Warbler, Black throated Green Warbler, Fan tailed Warbler, Rufous capped Warbler (Chestnut capped subspecies), Golden browed Warbler, Golden crowned Warbler (Stripe crowned subspecies), Wilson's Warbler, Red faced Warbler, Pink headed Warbler and Slate throated Redstart.  It was a great trip and it will be very tough to add a half dozen new species of warbler on a single trip again.
Yellow rumped Warbler 'myrtle', Arcadia, Northampton, MA, Feb 21, 2018
Yellow rumped Warblers 'myrtle', Arcadia, Northampton, MA, Feb 20, 2018
Once I was back home I managed to turn up at least eleven Yellow rumped Warblers at Arcadia on a couple different days in late February...unprecedented for me in Hampshire County where I have never had any species of warbler in February.
Pine Warbler, Belchertown, MA, Mar 10, 2018
Pine Warbler, Belchertown, MA, Mar 10, 2018
Palm Warbler 'western', Lake Wallace, Belchertown, MA, Mar 25, 2018
Yellow rumped Warbler 'myrtle', Arcadia, Easthampton, MA, Mar 27, 2018
Yellow throated Warbler, Coconut Point Sanctuary, FL, Mar 21, 2018
Northern Parula, Tiger Creek Sanctuary, FL, Mar 18, 2018
March became more winter like with multiple snow storms during the early part of the month and several nor'easters from mid month on.  The Yellow rumped Warblers at Arcadia continued in the same area throughout the month.  A very early Pine Warbler showed up at the Griffith's on March 7 and I finally caught up with it on March 10...my earliest date ever for this species that usually shows up in the area in early April.  A mid month trip to Florida turned up a number of new warbler species for the year but nothing out of the ordinary.  Another early record also showed up this month when a Palm Warbler turned up at Lake Wallace on March 25 and stuck around for several days...only my second year of ever getting the species here in March with the last time being in 2012.
Pine Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, Apr 11, 2018
Palm Warbler 'yellow', Covey WMA, Belchertown, MA, Apr 18, 2018
Yellow rumped Warbler 'myrtle', Lake Wallace, Belchertown, MA, Apr 19, 2018
Louisiana Waterthrush, Quabbin Park, MA, Apr 20, 2018
Black and White Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, Apr 27, 2018
Although a little cooler and wetter (and snowier) than typical, April still produced some warblers (eight for the month).  Nothing out of the ordinary but it was just the vanguard of what was to arrive in May when they big numbers and variety arrived.
Brewster's Warbler, Sweet Alice Conservation Area, Amherst, MA, May 3, 2018
Blackburnian Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, May 5, 2018
Blue winged x Golden winged Warbler hybrid, Quabbin Park, MA, May 3, 2018
Prairie Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, May 5, 2018
Chestnut sided Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, May 5, 2018
Black and White Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, May 5, 2018
Worm eating Warbler, Skinner SP, Hadley, MA, May 8, 2018
Northern Waterthrush, Pelham, MA, May 8, 2018
Nashville Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, May 9, 2018
Ovenbird, Quabbin Park, MA, May 10, 2018
Yellow Warbler, Sweet Alice Conservation Area, Amherst, MA, May 3, 2018
Blackpoll Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, May 15, 2018
Black throated Green Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, May 15, 2018
Cerulean Warbler, Skinner SP, Hadley, MA, May 15, 2018
Black throated Blue Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, May 16, 2018
Cape May Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, May 16, 2018
Bay breasted Warbler, UMASS, Amherst, MA, May 21, 2018
Chestnut sided Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, May 23, 2018
Mourning Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, May 23, 2018
American Redstart on nest, Quabbin Park, MA, May 23, 2018
The month of May is the month I look forward to the most as almost all the warblers you can find in the area arrive in mass.  Every day more variety shows up until it all peaks around the middle of the month.  Although many species settle down to breed here others continue further to the north well into Canada before settling down to raise the next generation.  Some of those species that breed further north including Bay breasted, Tennessee and Cape May Warblers have had great breeding success the last couple years so once again appeared in above normal numbers here during migration.  I had probably my best day for warbler diversity ever around here on May 16th with a total of 29 species over the course of the day.
Mourning Warbler, Quabbin Park, MA, Jun 8, 2018
Brewster's Warbler, Sweet Alice Conservation Area, Amherst, MA, Jun 13, 2018
During June most migrants moving north have passed through and the birds that remain are in the midst of another breeding season.  The Mourning Warbler at Quabbin Park continued to sing on territory to try to attract a mate but I do not believe it was successful in that endeavor this year.
Yellow rumped Warbler 'audubon's', Rocky Mountain National Park, CO, Jul 9, 2018
Wilson's Warbler, Rocky Mountain National Park, CO, Jul 13, 2018
MacGillivray's Warbler, Rocky Mountain National Park, CO, Jul 11, 2018
Virginia's Warbler, South Mesa Trail, Boulder Cty, CO, Jul 15, 2018
As the breeding season wound down around here for the year we made a trip out to Colorado visiting a few locations around Rocky Mountain NP and Denver.  A total of eight species of warblers were found during the trip with a few new for the year for me.  A full look at July can be found here.
Ovenbird, Quabbin Park, MA, Aug 27, 2018
The end of August brought the beginnings of migrants making their way south for the winter with some early arrivals including Cape May Warblers.  Lots of other local breeders were still around with the adults being joined by the latest generation of juveniles
Connecticut Warbler, Arcadia, Northampton, MA, Sep 20, 2018
Connecticut Warbler, Arcadia, Northampton, MA, Sep 20, 2018
Wilson's Warbler, Silvio Conte NWR-Fort River, Hadley, MA, Sep 22, 2018
Orange crowned Warbler, Arcadia, Northampton, MA, Sep 27, 2018
Connecticut Warbler, Arcadia, Northampton, MA, Sep 23, 2018
As is typically the case September is the second best month for warblers (after May of course) but locating the birds can be a bit more difficult as singing has largely come to an end and you have to search harder to find the birds.It was another decent season for Connecticut Warblers which seemed to be concentrated a bit more than previous years with most occurring within just a few days and then moving on.  I did have my highest ever total on a single day when I found three in one day at Arcadia and ended the month with a total of eight Connecticut Warblers.
Tennessee Warbler, Arcadia, Northampton, MA, Oct 19, 2018
As fall progressed and October arrived the diversity of warblers continued to drop but I did have a number of late dates among the 16 species recorded for the month (a later post will be coming up over the winter on all the early and late dates for Hampshire County).
Palm Warbler 'yellow', Silvio Conte NWR-Fort River, Hadley, MA, Nov 28, 2018
November was a good month for warblers in Hampshire County with five species seen during the month (my highest total for the month I have ever had) including new late dates for Black and White Warbler, Blackpoll Warbler and Palm Warbler.
Yellow rumped Warbler 'myrtle', Aqua Vitae Rd, Hadley, MA, Dec 17, 2018
I managed to find a Yellow rumped Warbler in December in Hampshire County which meant that I had found at least one species of warbler in the county for every month in 2018, something I have never accomplished before.  At the very end of the month we took another trip down to Costa Rica and I added half a dozen species of warblers while birding around Rio Magnolia Lodge on New Years Eve day.
Yellow rumped Warbler 'myrtle', Home, Belchertown, MA, May 3, 2018
Northern Parula and Blackburnian Warbler, Home, Belchertown, MA, May 3, 2018
Magnolia Warbler, Home, Belchertown, MA, May 15, 2018
Black throated Blue Warbler, Home, Belchertown, MA, May 23, 2018
American Redstart, Home, Belchertown, MA, May 26, 2018
Pine Warbler, Home, Belchertown, MA, Jun 8, 2018
Common Yellowthroat, Home, Belchertown, MA, Aug 5, 2018
Bay breasted Warbler and Blackpoll Warbler, Home, Belchertown, MA, Sep 19, 2018
Black and White Warbler, Home, Belchertown, MA, Oct 1, 2018
The camera at the water feature in the yard captured eleven warbler species this year with four of them new for the water feature (Blackburnian, Magnolia, and Bay breasted Warbler plus Northern Parula).  The camera at the water feature has now captured a lucky 13 species of warbler coming in to take a drink.  Overall for the yard for the year I had 23 species of warblers.  Yet again I have failed to find a Blue winged Warbler for the yard...hopefully next year!


Below are few tables of warblers seen overall for the year, warblers per month and warblers seen in Hampshire County by month.

Warblers (running tally for year)

Jan       Feb      Mar      Apr      May      Jun     Jul      Aug     Sep      Oct      Nov     Dec
21        35         41        41        48          48      50       50        51        51        51        51


Warblers overall per month

Jan       Feb      Mar      Apr      May      Jun     Jul      Aug     Sep      Oct      Nov     Dec
21        22        11         8           30         21      23       20        27        16        5          7


Hampshire County warblers by month

Jan       Feb      Mar      Apr      May      Jun     Jul      Aug     Sep      Oct      Nov     Dec
1          1          3           8          30          21      18       20        27        16        5         1