Yellowthroat Warbler - Eating Like A Bird

January 01, 2021  •  Leave a Comment

Bring on the BugsBring on the BugsImmature Male Yellowthroat with Cucumber Beetle. Northern Maryland

Yellowthroats are vocal birds, and their often-uninterrupted calls and chirps help reveal their presence. But once you’ve seen them, don’t assume you’ll see them again or you can get your camera to focus on them. These are fast moving small birds that forage in dense vegetation, shrubs, and thickets. This is an immature male yellowthroat that captured a cucumber beetle. Cucumber beetles, also known as southern corn rootworm, are a major agricultural pest in North America.  Because of the subterranean nature of their larvae, these insects are hard and expensive to control, so Eating Like A Bird in this case is a nature-designed pesticide. Adult male yellowthroats have a bright yellow body and black mask and are very striking birds. The black mask is an important signal for male birds. When researchers added a black paper mask to a stuffed female, males started attacking the stuffed bird, as if it were a male rival. Yellowthroats are found in most of North and Central America. Most yellowthroat populations migrate with some flying short distances and others go all the way from northern Canada to Central America. Like all wild birds, yellowthroats rely on healthy habitats for survival. Because yellowthroats are insectivores and often live in wetlands, they’re susceptible to poor water quality, pesticides, other pollutants, and declining wild habitat.


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