[CT Birds] Question about the Blue-winged/Golden-winged hybirds

David F Provencher david.f.provencher at dom.com
Wed May 9 11:33:04 EDT 2012


My experience with detectable hybrid Blue-winged x Golden-wingeds is that they do establish territories in CT in some cases. If the frequency of territory establishment in these hybrids is lower than the frequency of territory establishment in the Blue-winged or Golden-winged taxon, I'm not able to say. However I suspect they have no greater difficulty in doing so than a similarly aged visibly pure bird. Since visibly detectable hybrids are easy to identify as individuals, it is easy to say if one sticks. However, if a Blue-winged Warbler supplants another on a territory, it isn't the easiest thing to determine by sight. Clearly hybrids of these two taxons have little trouble interbreeding with the parent species, and recent research suggests that the genetic differences between these two "species" is very slight indeed. Interbreeding (Intra-breeding may be a better word!) has been occurring for so long and to such an extent that many visibly "pure" individuals show genetic evidence of hybridization in their lineage. And as birders are well aware, it is pretty easy to find a "Blue-winged" doing a Golden-winged song, or at least a song very Golden-winged like (and yes song is NOT genetically determined in general but rather learned). I know of one such cross-singing bird in Nehantic State forest that has been on the same territory this year and last. A few years ago a classic "Brewster's" held territory in the forest about 2 miles away from this bird's current territory. 


David Provencher

CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE:  This electronic message contains
information which may be legally confidential and/or privileged and
does not in any case represent a firm ENERGY COMMODITY bid or offer
relating thereto which binds the sender without an additional
express written confirmation to that effect.  The information is
intended solely for the individual or entity named above and access
by anyone else is unauthorized.  If you are not the intended
recipient, any disclosure, copying, distribution, or use of the
contents of this information is prohibited and may be unlawful.  If
you have received this electronic transmission in error, please
reply immediately to the sender that you have received the message
in error, and delete it.  Thank you.

More information about the CTBirds mailing list