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Prairie Warbler Dendroica discolor


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Prairie Warbler, male
credit: Wolfgang Wander/CCSA

© Lang Elliot/ (audio)

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Family: Parulidae, Wood Warblers view all from this family

Description ADULT MALE Has mostly olive-yellow upperparts, including nape and crown, with rufous streaks on back and two rather indistinct yellowish wing bars. Face is mostly bright yellow, but note dark eyestripe linked to dark crescent below eye. Throat and underparts are mostly bright yellow (palest and whitest on undertail coverts) with black streaks on flanks and side of neck. ADULT FEMALE Recalls adult male but face is duller and lacks male's striking black pattern. IMMATURE Much duller and paler than respective sex adult.

Dimensions Length: 5" (13 cm)

Habitat Locally common summer visitor (mainly May-Aug) to overgrown fields and colonizing scrub and woodland; winters in mangroves in Florida and around Caribbean.

Observation Tips Easy to see.

Range Texas, Eastern Canada, Plains, New England, Southeast, Great Lakes, California, Florida, Mid-Atlantic

Voice Song is an accelerating series of notes, tsu, tsu, tsu, tsi'si'si'si, rising in pitch throughout delivery; call is a sharp tchip.

Discussion Brightly colored warbler with a striking facial pattern. Pumps its tail up and down while foraging for insects. Common name is inappropriate: favors scrub and young secondary growth woodland rather than grassland. Sexes are separable.