Daily Archives: May 7, 2019

Kirtland’s Warbler

The Kirtland’s Warbler is kind of the holy grail of warblers. They breed in rapidly disappearing young Jack Pine forests with grassy openings mostly in Michigan, and winter in the Bahamas. They are also subject to cowbird nest predators. Numbers dropped as low as 500 individuals in the 70s, all breeding in a the single remaining six square mile patch of Jack Pine…before an aggressive recovery plan was developed to both protect nesting birds and increase the available suitable Jack Pine forest. Every year a few come through the Erie shore of Ohio during (before and after) the Biggest Week in American Birding. A few of those are actually seen. When one is found the word goes out on the birding grapevine (twitter, facebook, ebird, etc) very quickly. This year, for whatever reason, there have been at least 4 sightings in as many days. Yesterday there were two (actually three as there were two at one site) seen at the same time a few miles apart. When I got to one of the spots, a residential area right up against the lake shore, the bird had already been showing for over 2 hours, and was still happily singing in a tree right over the road with about 30 birders in attendance. It was my first Kirtlands and it was almost too easy :). Sony RX10iv at 600mm equivalent. Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Polarr.