Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Common Yellowthroat

Common Yellowthroats are found across much of North America. These warblers are abundant in the marshes of the Nisqually national wildlife refuge, where we heard them singing on 17 May 2021. Ornithologists are confused about variation among different populations. I have always thought that western birds have broader white bands above their black masks than do eastern birds. Recent studies show that western birds show significant genetic differences from eastern ones.  

Erika and I note that Washington yellowthroats seem to sing a slower song than eastern yellowthroats. Although Western birds are known to have more complex songs than in the east, we do not find our impression of slower songs confirmed in the literature. If you are familiar with Common Yellowthroats, listen to this song file we made at Nisqually and see what you think.

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