ARTISTS AND BIRDS
"A Sighting To Remember"
If you go near a dense, mossy, woodsy, swampy, bogy area from the mid-western US to the east coast, you could see a Canada Warbler migrating through. This beautiful bird is one of the last warblers to arrive north in the spring, and one of the first to leave in the fall heading to its South American wintering grounds. The warbler is aptly named, since 85 percent of all Canada Warbler chicks are born in Canada.
My first encounter with a Canada Warbler was at a campground just over the Idaho boarder. It was early in the afternoon when we arrived and set up camp. As we worked around the trailer, I kept hearing this singing in the tops of the trees, so naturally I grabbed my binoculars and set out to find ‘the voice’. The campground had a pond and was full of shrubs and trees. About midway in a canopy of leaves I saw a Canada Warbler. Wow! Once you see this colorful, necklaced warbler, you will never forget the day, the time, and the surroundings it was found in. I ran to get my honey to come see this new bird, but the air around him was full of swarms of mosquitoes and he was hurrying to get his blood-dripping torso back into the safety of the trailer, behind a screened door. I will always remember seeing that beautiful bird, that day, and honey remembers donating his blood, mosquitoes, and no warbler.
This once abundant Canada Warbler has been slowly slipping in numbers. Last April the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada designated this bird as ‘threatened’. So if you have a migrating Canada Warbler sighting, you are indeed fortunate.
Brenda Rusnell is the artist of the Canada Warbler, painted with color pencil. For more information about the Canada Warbler or monthly Red Cliffs Audubon activities, call 435 673-0996.