Tuesday, January 14, 2014

100 Warblers foraging on the ground

Today as I walked past the Fine Arts Building at UNO, I noticed that the grassy surface of the lawn seemed to be moving.  I looked more closely, and it was covered with Yellow-rumped Warblers that had descended from the shade trees.  Most were foraging, but a few bathed in rain puddles.   There was a continuous flow of birds up and down from the trees, and occasionally a large part of the flock would flush up into the branches when spooked.

Flock foraging on the ground happens occasionally with this species, which is more comfortable foraging on the ground in the open than just about any other warbler.  Pine Warblers will sometimes descend to the ground with them, and indeed four were mixed in the Yellowrump flock today- along with a lone American Goldfinch.

The flock on the lawn numbered 70- and an additional 30 or so were on and near the ground (leaf litter) in the nearby small woodlot.

Earlier in the day, I had also seen 20 or so Yellowrumps on the ground in an abandoned "Katrina lot" on Harrison Avenue.  I wonder if the recent cold snap has somehow shifted their food distribution so that more of it is at ground level now- ?


For a copy of Birding Made Easy-New Orleans, email me at birding.made.easy.new.orleans@gmail.com, or look for it at area book stores.  It is now available at
Uptown:  Garden District Book Shop, Maple Street Book Shop, Octavia Books
French Quarter and Marigny:  Peach Records, Fauborg Marigny Art Books Music, Librairie Book Shop, Beckham's Bookshop, Arcadian Books and Prints, the Crabnet
Mid City:  City Park Botanical Garden, Community Book Center
Metairie:  Double M Feed on W. Esplanade
Harahan:  Double M Feed on Jefferson Hwy
North Shore:  Mandeville Chiropractic

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