About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Small Mysterious Black & White Bird Visits Mid-Michigan

Black-throated Blue Warbler (Dendroica caerule...Image via WikipediaI saw a new bird in the backyard today. At first glance I thought maybe a Dark-eyed Junco...no...Red-breasted Nuthatch...no...no too early for those birds to visit our feeders in mid-Michigan anyway. I walked close to get a better look at this new bird at the suet feeder. It looks like it might be a warbler that's passing through.
Available at Wild Birds Unlimited
East Lansing, MI store
I go to Birds of Michigan by Ted Black to find its name. In the front of the book is a little reference guide with mug shots of all the birds in Michigan. And there is my bird on page 13, also known as Black-throated Blue Warbler.  

He was under the pine tree so he looked like a small black bird with a white belly and white wing spots. In the sun he might have looked more blue. Watching this dark and handsome bird was a great way to start the day!

BLACK-THROATED BLUE WARBLER. Dendroica caerule...Image via Wikipedia
Female and Male
Black-thoated Blue Warblers
Black-throated Blue Warblers nest in northern Michigan. The female which is olive brown and tan with a faint black eyebrow, looks very different in appearance from the male. They pass through mid-Michigan mid-August to late September. They are among most trusting and tame of their family. So keep your eyes open and maybe you can spot this warbler before he migrates to his winter home in the deciduous and evergreen woodlands of the Gulf coast states and the Greater Antilles.