Blue-Winged Warbler – Profile | Facts | Habitat | Song | Traits | Range

Blue-winged Warbler

Distinctive in all plumages, the Blue-winged Warbler is generally vibrant yellow with a greenish-tinged back, blue-gray wings with two white wing bars, and a darkish line by the attention on an in any other case plain face.

Blue-winged Warbler profile

It breeds within the Midwest and Northeast, from the Great Lakes south to northern Alabama, and winters on the Atlantic slope of Mexico and in northern Central America.

Migration takes place largely throughout the Gulf of Mexico; therefore the Blue-winged is, without doubt, one of the rarest vagrant “eastern” warblers within the West.

Oregon has three data and Idaho one or two; there are none for British Columbia. Washington’s single accepted document occurred on the Anacortes ferry dock (Skagit County) on 17 September 1990.

Geographic Range

Blue-winged warblers, scientific name Vermivora pinus are native to North America and migrate seasonally between North and South America.

During their breeding season, they are often seen within the Midwest, in addition to the northeastern and southeastern United States; particularly, as far west as Nebraska and as far south as northern Georgia and northern Alabama.

More not too long ago, their geographic range has expanded additional north, to southern Maine, as environmental impacts have restricted appropriate forests.

During winter, this species migrates south, the place they are often present in Mexico, all through Central America (however sparingly in Panama), and northern Colombia.

While the wintering range of blue-winged warblers appears huge, they’re primarily concentrated in a 900 x 500 km range, situated between Honduras and the Yucatán Peninsula.

The North American range of blue-winged warblers has been steadily increasing northward, with enlargement charges estimated between three to six km per year.

Populations reached Ohio within the early 1900s and have become nicely established there, and in Michigan by the 1920s. The species was established in New York between 1950 to 1971. Their implied latitudinal shift northward over 26 years to be 85.34 km +/- 18.55 km.

Blue-winged Warbler Overview

The blue-winged warbler (Vermivora cyanoptera) is a reasonably widespread New World warbler, 11.5 cm (4.5 in) long and weighing 8.5 g (0.30 oz).

It breeds in eastern North America in southern Ontario and the eastern United States. Its range is extending northwards, the place it’s changing the very intently associated golden-winged warbler, Vermivora chrysoptera.

The widespread name blue-winged warbler refers back to the bluish-gray coloration of the wings that distinction with the intense yellow body of the male. The name of the genus Vermivora means “worm-eating”.

The genus used to incorporate 9 different new world warblers however now consists of solely the golden-winged warbler and Bachman’s warbler which is believed to be extinct.


There has been comparatively little research on longevity for blue-winged warblers. Available knowledge is restricted to wild banded birds that were recaptured.

There are experiences of blue-winged warblers being recaptured at 7 and 9 years of age, although residing to those ages within the wild is rare.

On average, blue-winged warblers stay 2.5 years within the wild. Because this species just isn’t saved in captivity, captive lifespans are unknown.


Blue-winged warblers are migratory New World warblers. They winter in southern Central America and breed from east-central Nebraska within the west to southern Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, and southern Ontario within the north to central New York, southern Vermont, southern New Hampshire, and New England to the east, south to western South Carolina, northern Georgia, northern Alabama, eastern Tennessee, and southern Missouri. It is a really uncommon vagrant to western Europe, with one bird wandering to Ireland.

Blue-winged Warbler Description

The blue-winged warbler is a small warbler at 11.4–12.7 cm (4.5–5.0 in) long, with a wingspan of 17–19.5 cm (6.7–7.7 in). The breeding plumage of the male consists of a vibrant yellow head, breast, and underparts.

There isn’t any streaking of the underparts of the bird. It has a slim black line by the eyes and light blueish grey with two white wing-bars, that are diagnostic subject marks.

The blue-winged warblers are typically small in size with a well-proportioned body, and heavy pointed bill. They roughly measure 4.three to 4.7 inches long with a wingspan of around 5.9 inches. An average Blue-Winged Warbler weighs around 0.3 oz.

The feminine is duller general with much less yellow on the crown. Immatures are olive green with wings much like the adults.

The coloration of their plumage tends to fluctuate relying on the sex of the species. For males, the feathers are vibrant yellow and olive green.

The males usually have bluish-gray wings that include white wing bars and a particular black eye lining, making their heads look pointier in comparison with different male warbler species.

Blue-Winged Warbler females exhibit a yellow plumage that appears a bit lighter in coloration. The females even have a lot much less outstanding eye lining which largely appears to be like gray and light, relatively than black as seen within the males.

Immature or juvenile Blue-winged Warblers are smaller in comparison with adults and can present a pinkish bill and virtually invisible wing bars.

The song is a sequence of buzzing notes. The call is a pointy chip.

Male and feminine blue-winged warblers exhibit related coloration patterns, although females are usually drabber. Their brow, crown, chin, throat, breast, flanks, and stomach have a vibrant yellow coloration that doesn’t change seasonally.

Their wing coverts are blue-grey with broad white bars on each tail and flight feathers. In females, these white bars are usually thinner.

Bill coloration modifications seasonally for males: black in spring and summer season, and pinkish to light brown within the fall and winter.

Blue-winged warblers are recognizable by a black stripe by their eye and white wing bars. Towards the end of the breeding season, usually late June to early August, adults molt.

As adults, blue-winged warblers weigh between 7.9 to 10.5 g, with an average of 9.2 g, and so they measure 11.4 to 12.7 cm in size, with an average of 12.Zero cm. Their wingspan has been reported as 17.15 cm.

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Blue-winged Warbler Behavior

Blue-winged warblers work together variably with conspecifics relying on the time of year, sex, and sort of encounter. During the breeding season, they’re aggressive in the direction of intruders of their established mating ground.

When an intruder of the identical or completely different species enters their territory, they reply with shows of tail-spreading and crown-raising. Physical acts of aggression embody chasing, flying previous, and bodily combating the intruder.

Encounters like these could final seconds or a number of minutes, relying on the persistence of the intruder. Aggressive encounters are commonest with conspecifics in the course of the first week of arrival at breeding grounds when males are vying for a mate and territory.

During the winter, as a result of males are usually not in shut proximity to one another, chasing behavior has not been noticed. Blue-winged warblers transfer on the ground by hopping, although spend solely temporary moments there, usually whereas foraging.

They perch on branches close to their nest in the course of the breeding season and sometimes hold the other way up as they discover new areas. Both sexes preen, which occupies 2 to five% of their time.

During the winter, most wood-warblers, like blue-winged warblers, stay in small teams and typically separate into sex-specific teams.

Blue-winged Warbler Habitat

Blue-winged warblers stay in wetlands, shrublands, and early successional forest communities. Generally, blue-winged warblers nest at decrease elevations on the perimeters of successional areas. Breeding grounds are usually clearings, fields, and stream edges that have undergrowth consisting of forbs, weeds, and brush.

In the mid-Atlantic area, they populate low elevations of the Appalachian Mountains (lower than 609.6 m). They make use of comparable ecological areas in the course of the winter, occupying low elevation areas of foothills, overgrown fields, and combined forests.

The breeding habitat is open scrubby areas. The species is extensively distributed in North America, with populations present in states similar to North Carolina, South Carolina, Connecticut, Florida, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, and Ohio.

They’re largely present in deserted fields with shrubs and bushes and bordered by tall deciduous bushes. The Blue-Winged Warblers are typically present in areas situated in higher elevations and a high share of grass and cover.


Diet consists of bugs and spiders. Blue-Winged Warblers primarily feed on bugs present in varied vegetation together with apple bushes, walnut bushes, and water hemlock.

Adults typically hold the other way up to glean and probe leaves and collect insect larvae for his or her younger. Some examples of larvae fed to juvenile Blue-winged Warblers embody Aphis sp., and Corythucha sp.

Often, researchers presume that the species’ diet and feeding strategies are inclined to differ on every season and habitat, and might also change as a result of the availability of assets. This could possibly be thought of as a relative generalist species.

Blue-winged Warbler Communication

Blue-winged warblers sing two distinct songs which are described as sounding more insect-like than bird-like. Type I songs are sung by males, most frequently in the course of the first few weeks of the breeding season when they aren’t paired.

It is an easy “bee-bzzz,” and lasts roughly 1.1 to 1.9 seconds. Type II songs are used all through the breeding season, although more widespread throughout egg-laying and incubation phases.

This song is extremely variable in notes, size, and frequency. Different dialects of the second song exist throughout geographical areas. Males use the sort II song most incessantly when interacting with different males, usually as an indication of territoriality.

Type II songs final roughly 1.04 to 1.97 seconds and are usually not distinctive to blue-winged warblers. Golden-winged warblers and hybrids sing practically similar variations. Female and male call notes are blunt and described as “tzip” or “tsik”.

Blue-winged Warbler Reproduction

Blue-winged warblers nest on the ground or low in a bush, laying 4 to seven eggs in a cup nest. The females incubate the eggs for 10–11 days. The younger are altricial and fledge in 8–10 days.

The blue-winged species talk with others through singing. Hence, they’ve songs for combating (descending bee-buzz), nesting, in addition to breeding with different Blue-Winged Warblers.

During the breeding season, the males arrive first within the location and wait for his or her possible mate. Usually, the females arrive one week after the males.

While ready for his or her mates, the males sing constantly. Once the females enter, the singing decreases and will probably change in tune till they discover a partner. After mating, the size of their song abruptly decreases.

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