[CT Birds] Fall warbler ID

Frank Mantlik mantlik at sbcglobal.net
Thu Sep 11 08:28:40 EDT 2014

Greetings all,

Now that we're in the heart of fall songbird migration, I'd like to share some helpful aids on identification.
On Tuesday, I presented a program to Hartford Audubon Society on "Confusing Fall Warblers". It was well-received, and I hope most walked away with at least a few tips on identifying warblers in autumn. 

Basically, it often helps to look for muted field marks that are bright on spring birds. An example would be if you see a mostly yellow warbler, look for the semblance of the dark-shaded hood of a Hooded Warbler, or the dark-shaded skullcap of a Wilson's Warbler. Likewise, If you see a nondescript dull grayish-greenish warbler, look for a small white spot ("handkerchief) on the edge of the wing; which would clinch it as a female/immature Black-throated Blue Warbler.

For more tips, check out this website on warbler ID:

And eBird has an article of differentiating Blackpoll and Bay-breasted Warblers here:

Good birding,

Frank Mantlik
Sunrise Birding LLC

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