Whither the warblers? Still down south (for a while)
Warm up with this video while counting down the days until the peak of spring migration
The only thing standing between us and May is the rest of March and all of April—two long, chilly months to be sure. But one can dream of the warm days that are ahead.
We wait all year for those few weeks in May when wood warblers appear across the region, some days in jaw-dropping numbers. A dozen species decorating one tree in a lakefront park or bejeweling a row of shrubby vegetation.
Here’s a clip from last May at the famed Magic Hedge at Chicago’s Montrose Point. The humidity and warmth of a spring morning sort of jump through the screen at you.
Yellow-rumped Warblers are the only wood warblers that can brave a Chicago winter. Unlike their highly insectivorous kin, they subsist on berries and seeds and even birdfeeder suet. This one has been hanging around the Northwest Side all winter, its yellow rump patch providing a bright spot on dreary winter days.