Yellow-throated Warbler in a Jewelry Store

On a recent trip to Cozumel, Mexico I was very surprised to see a brightly coloured bird flying about in a mall. I tried unsuccessfully to get a photo of it sitting in a potted palm tree planted there. Fortunately, however, this little beauty soon darted into a jewelry store which the manager told me that it has been frequenting for several weeks.

The well-named bird is a Yellow-throated Warbler.

In spring & summer this species is common locally in large trees of mature lowland forests, rarely getting as far north as Ontario though I have heard them singing in forest near Lake Erie. They winter in the Gulf states south to the Caribbean, Costa Rica and Mexico.

The preferred winter habitat is palm trees of which there were several in the mall.

As you can see, the bird has a grey back, two white wing bars, a white belly with black stripes along the sides, black ear patches, a white eye stripe and a lovely yellow throat.

Yellow-throated Warblers creep along branches in search of insect prey rather like our Black and White Warbler.

The song is a series of clear ringing notes descending in pitch and increasing in speed , rising abruptly at the end.

On this day, the jewelry in the shop was not the most beautiful item on display!

Miles Hearn

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