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Pine Warbler and Least Sandpiper

May 23, 2015

Laura and I visited Oakfield Provincial Park on May 16 to search for the Pine Warblers. This park was our first stop on a long day of cross country driving and photography, plus two picnics. We heard a male singing in the park and I photographed the female. These warblers are usually high up in the pine trees and hard to spot and even harder to photograph. Their song is similar to that of a Dark-eyed Junco so ear tuning is a prerequisite.

The record to date is:

-2015- Female seen and photographed by Hans Toom and Laura Elliott, also a male was heard singing;

-2014- Male heard singing on territory, others seen and photographed by Hans Toom;

-2013- Male seen carrying food, others photographed by Hans Toom and seen by Fulton Lavender and Richard Hatch;

-2012- Juvenile, recently fledged, seen by Fulton Lavender.

Courtesy of Wikipedia:

Their breeding habitats are open pine woods in eastern North America. These birds are permanent residents in southern Florida. Some of them, however, migrate to northeastern Mexico and islands in the Caribbean. The first record for South America was a vagrant wintering female seen at Vista Nieve, Colombia, on 20 November 2002; this bird was foraging as part of a mixed-species feeding flock that also included wintering Blackburnian and Tennessee warblers.

They forage slowly on tree trunks and branches by poking their bill into pine cones. These birds also find food by searching for it on the ground. These birds mainly eat insects, seeds and berries.

Their nests are deep, open cups, which are placed near the end of a tree branch. Pine warblers prefer to nest in pine trees, hence their names. Three to five blotched white eggs are laid

Pine Warbler

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At Brookfield Marsh we found a Least Sandpiper foraging in the mud and successfully pulling out little red worms to munch on. The Least Sandpiper is rare for mid May.

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