Scientific Name: Dendroica coronata
Forms: There are two forms of the Yellow-Rumped Warbler: the Myrtle Warbler which lives in the east, and the Audubon’s Warbler which lives in the west. They were thought to be two separate species until just recently when scientists discovered that where their ranges meet Myrtle Warblers and Audubon’s warblers breed freely with each other. Now they are one species, Yellow-Rumped Warbler.
Description/field marks: The Audubon’s form of Yellow-Rumped Warbler male has a bright yellow throat and rump, and has patches of yellow on its sides. Its back is gray with streaks of darker gray, and it has white wing bars. There is a streak of white on the breast, and they have white undersides. The female is gray above, and lighter gray below, with pale yellow on the sides, rump, and throat.The Myrtle form of the Yellow-Rumped Warbler looks the same as the Audubon’s form, except the Myrtle form lack the yellow on the throat.
Behavior: Yellow-Rumped Warblers often wait on exposed branches for insects to fly by, and fly out to catch them like a flycatcher would. In winter Yellow-Rumped Warblers form large flocks which often consist only of Yellow-Rumped Warblers.
Diet: Yellow-Rumped Warblers eat mostly insects during the breeding season. They eat caterpillars and other larvae, leaf beetles, weevils, ants, aphids, grass hoppers, caddis flies, and crane flies. In winter Yellow-Rumped Warblers change their diets to fruits and berries such as wax myrtle, bayberries, poison ivy, poison oak, juniper berries, dogwood, and virginia creeper.
Nesting: The nest is built by the female, and is made from pine needles, rootlets, grasses, and twigs. The nest may also have moss, lichen, and animal hair built into it. It is lined with feathers and hair. Yellow-Rumped Warblers usually take about 10 days to make their nests. Yellow-Rumped Warblers lay 4 or 5 eggs, and incubation lasts for 12 or 13 days. When the nest is finished it is 3 or 4 inches across, and they often lay two broods.
Habitat: Yellow-Rumped Warblers can be found in dense and wet conifer forests during the breeding season, and in thickets, thorn scrub, and mangroves during the winter. They also live in open woodlands, orchards, shrubby areas, parks, and suburban areas.
How to attract: Yellow-Rumped Warblers sometimes come to bird feeders, so to attract them put out suet, sunflower seeds, peanut butter, or raisons.