Commonly known as northern parulas,is found across the Nearctic and Neotropical regions. As a Neotropical migrant, inhabits different regions in each season. In the spring and summer, this species breeds across the southeastern edge of Canada including the southern portions of Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, and Maritime Provinces. This northernmost breeding range includes Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, New York, New Hampshire and Maine. Below this range, there is a narrow band of states that does not breed in. This warbler migrates through, but does not breed in, Iowa and southern Minnesota eastward to Massachusetts and New Jersey. Below this belt, breeds in every state in the southeastern United States.
During the winter, these warblers inhabits the very southern tip of Florida, Caribbean Islands, and Bermuda. They may also be found in Mexico and portions of Central America from Veracruz to Honduras. (Moldenhauer and Regelski, 1996; Sibley, 2000)
inhabits various habitats depending on season and location. This is primarily a forest-dwelling species, but the northern and southern breeding populations select different habitats. In general, abundance of this species has been found to be positively correlated with increased tree species diversity, canopy height, and percent canopy cover. Northern populations breed in mature, moist coniferous forests. This species constructs its pendulum nests in hanging vegetation and so it is often attracted to suspended clumps of moss or coniferous twigs that are more abundant in moist spruce bogs or hemlock swamps. Southern populations breed in mature, moist, bottomland forest where Spanish moss is prevalent.
is a small wood-warbler that measures 11.4 cm in length and weighs 8.6 g. This species molts twice annually, before and after the summer breeding season. Both males and females have distinct plumage during the breeding season. During this time, both are blue-gray above with a green, triangular mantle. Tail and wing feathers are a darker shade of blue-gray and they feature a pair of bold, white wing-bars. Both sexes also have bright yellow throats that extend through the breast. The bill is two-toned, with a black upper mandible and a yellow lower mandible that blends with the yellow throat. The bellies and undertail coverts are unmarked white. Breeding males feature distinct white eye-arcs surrounding a black eye stripe that connects to the base of the bill. Breeding males also feature prominent black and rufous breastbands that are often referred to as "necklaces". Breeding females are similar in appearance but are overall duller. At the end of the breeding season, individuals molt into a duller version of the breeding plumage. The unique breastband fades in males and may disappear altogether in females.
is a Neotropical migrant that begins breeding shortly after arriving at the breeding grounds. Arrival dates vary with geographic location, but southern populations begin breeding in March while northern populations do not begin until mid-May. Due to the longer breeding season, southern populations frequently have two broods, as opposed to northern populations which have one.
After pair formation, the female selects a suitable nest location within her mate's territory.nests in hanging pendulum shaped nests, usually located in hanging epiphytes such as Spanish moss. Sites located near water sources are preferred and many nests are found at the end of branches suspended over water. Females complete most of the nest construction with little to no help from males. The female hollows out a clump of vegetation and proceeds to fill the cavity with vegetation fibers, animal hair, grass, or pine needles. These nests average 7 cm in outside diameter.
After building her nest, the female lays an average of 4 to 5 white or cream-colored eggs speckled with varying amounts of brown. After eggs are laid, the incubation period typically lasts 12 to 14 days and the young fledge at 10 to 11 days old. Currently the length of the fledgling stage is unknown. Juvenile northern parulas may breed during the following breeding season. (Ehrlich, et al., 1988; Moldenhauer and Regelski, 1996; Palmer-Ball, 1996)
Upon arriving on the breeding grounds, males establish territories and aggressively defend them against intruders. The male is responsible for selecting a suitable territory and defending and protecting his territory, mate, and young. After pair-formation, the female selects a nesting site within her mate's territory and constructs the nest with little to no help from the male. The female then lays the clutch and is the sole incubator. The male occasionally assists by feeding the female while she broods the clutch. After the young have hatched, the female continues to perform most of the parental care. The female performs all brooding and most of the feeding. Both parents participate in nest sanitation and remove fecal sacs to prevent disease or reduce chance of predation. The young fledge 10 to 11 days after hatching and will remain under both parents' care for an unknown period of time. The female performs most of the feeding, but the male remains near to sing and defend his brood. (Ehrlich, et al., 1988; Moldenhauer and Regelski, 1996)
Fagus grandifolia) or stand size. (Moldenhauer and Regelski, 1996)is a relatively territorial species during the breeding season and males are known to defend territories ranging in size from 0.16 to 0.40 hectares. Like most birds, territory size is influenced by resource availability, however territory size for is known to increase with increased presence of American beech (
communicates mainly through a combination of vocal calls and physical movements or postures. The primary call for this species is an ascending, buzzy trill that abruptly ends with a short note of lower tone. This call is aptly described as "trills up, falls over". also gives a second call that is a buzzy, rapid string of short phrases that varies in length. Only males sing entire songs, which are used to establish or defend territory, as well as to attract mates. Males seem to use the primary call for attracting or interacting with females, while the more rapid calls are used in territorial disputes. Both sexes are capable of producing short chip notes which are often used to stay in contact with mates or young.
spiders, damselflies, locusts, true bugs, hoppers, aphids, beetles, caterpillars, flies, wasps, bees, and ants. Regardless of season, caterpillars and spiders are consumed most often. During the winter, consumes more beetles and occasionally forages on berries, seeds, and nectar. primarily captures prey from vegetation by a hover-glean method, however this species is versatile in using a variety of foraging methods. It may make short flights from a perch to snatch prey in mid-flight or even hang upside-down to forage. It is most often seen foraging in the mid- to upper canopy levels of vegetation. Though most foraging activity occurs in vegetation, this species occasionally forages on the ground as well. (Ehrlich, et al., 1988; Johnson, 2000; Moldenhauer and Regelski, 1996)is an insectivorous species, that forages mostly or entirely on terrestrial invertebrates. Prey items include
Currently there are no formal records of predation on Red squirrels, blue jays, and snakes are all likely predators of this species, especially predators of eggs and young in nests. may exhibit mobbing behavior when a nest predator is near. (Moldenhauer and Regelski, 1996; Stevenson and Anderson, 1994).
There are no known economic benefits thatprovides for humans. It is a popular bird with bird watchers, and seasonal migrations of this and other warblers can attract commerce to popular stopover areas.
There are no known negative affects ofon humans.
Rachelle Sterling (author), Special Projects, George Hammond (editor), Animal Diversity Web Staff, Tricia Jones (editor), University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, ADW Zookeeper (editor), University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, Tanya Dewey (editor), University of Michigan-Ann Arbor.
living in the Nearctic biogeographic province, the northern part of the New World. This includes Greenland, the Canadian Arctic islands, and all of the North American as far south as the highlands of central Mexico.
living in the southern part of the New World. In other words, Central and South America.
uses sound to communicate
living in landscapes dominated by human agriculture.
young are born in a relatively underdeveloped state; they are unable to feed or care for themselves or locomote independently for a period of time after birth/hatching. In birds, naked and helpless after hatching.
Referring to an animal that lives in trees; tree-climbing.
having body symmetry such that the animal can be divided in one plane into two mirror-image halves. Animals with bilateral symmetry have dorsal and ventral sides, as well as anterior and posterior ends. Synapomorphy of the Bilateria.
a wetland area rich in accumulated plant material and with acidic soils surrounding a body of open water. Bogs have a flora dominated by sedges, heaths, and sphagnum.
an animal that mainly eats meat
uses smells or other chemicals to communicate
animals that use metabolically generated heat to regulate body temperature independently of ambient temperature. Endothermy is a synapomorphy of the Mammalia, although it may have arisen in a (now extinct) synapsid ancestor; the fossil record does not distinguish these possibilities. Convergent in birds.
parental care is carried out by females
forest biomes are dominated by trees, otherwise forest biomes can vary widely in amount of precipitation and seasonality.
An animal that eats mainly insects or spiders.
offspring are produced in more than one group (litters, clutches, etc.) and across multiple seasons (or other periods hospitable to reproduction). Iteroparous animals must, by definition, survive over multiple seasons (or periodic condition changes).
parental care is carried out by males
makes seasonal movements between breeding and wintering grounds
Having one mate at a time.
having the capacity to move from one place to another.
the area in which the animal is naturally found, the region in which it is endemic.
reproduction in which eggs are released by the female; development of offspring occurs outside the mother's body.
scrub forests develop in areas that experience dry seasons.
breeding is confined to a particular season
reproduction that includes combining the genetic contribution of two individuals, a male and a female
a wetland area that may be permanently or intermittently covered in water, often dominated by woody vegetation.
uses touch to communicate
that region of the Earth between 23.5 degrees North and 60 degrees North (between the Tropic of Cancer and the Arctic Circle) and between 23.5 degrees South and 60 degrees South (between the Tropic of Capricorn and the Antarctic Circle).
Living on the ground.
defends an area within the home range, occupied by a single animals or group of animals of the same species and held through overt defense, display, or advertisement
the region of the earth that surrounds the equator, from 23.5 degrees north to 23.5 degrees south.
uses sight to communicate
Ehrlich, P., D. Dobkin, D. Wheye. 1988. The Birder's Handbook: A Field Guide to the Natural History of North American Birds. New York, NY: Simon and Schuster.
Johnson, M. 2000. Evaluation of an arthopod sampling technique for measuring food availability for forest insectivorous birds. Journal of Field Ornithology, 71/1: 88-109.
Klimkiewicz, M., R. Clapp, A. Futcher. 1983. Longevity records of North American birds: Remizidae through Parulinae. Journal of Field Ornithology, 54/3: 287-294.
Moldenhauer, R., D. Regelski. 1996. "Northern Parula (Parula americana)" (On-line). The Birds of North America Online. Accessed June 28, 2011 at http://bna.birds.cornell.edu/bna/species/215.
Palmer-Ball, B. 1996. The Kentucky Breeding Bird Atlas. Kentucky: University Press of Kentucky.
Sibley, D. 2000. The Sibley Guide to Birds. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.
Stevenson, H., B. Anderson. 1994. The Birdlife of Florida. Gainesville, FL: University Press of Florida.