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Blue-winged Warbler

Vermivora cyanoptera ORDER: PASSERIFORMES FAMILY: PARULIDAE

IUCN Conservation Status: Least Concern

Brightly colored but easily overlooked. A bird of shrubland and old fields, the Blue-winged Warbler expanded its breeding grounds northward throughout the 20th century.

At a GlanceHelp

Measurements
Both Sexes
Length
4.3–4.7 in
11–12 cm
Wingspan
5.9 in
15 cm
Weight
0.3 oz
9 g
Other Names
  • Paruline à ailes bleues (French)
  • Cipe ala azul (Spanish)

Cool Facts

  • Hybridizes extensively with Golden-winged Warbler, giving rise to the distinctly plumaged "Brewster's" and "Lawrence's" warblers.
  • The Blue-winged Warbler continues to expand its range and may be responsible for the decrease in Golden-winged Warbler populations in some areas.
  • The oldest recorded Blue-winged Warbler was a male, and at least 9 years old, when it was recaptured and rereleased during banding operations in New Jersey.

Habitat


Open Woodland

  • Early to midsuccession habitats, especially abandoned farmland and forest clearings.
  • Breeds at forest/field edges, often shaded by large trees.

Food


Insects

Insects and spiders.

Nesting

Nesting Facts
Clutch Size
2–7 eggs
Egg Description
White with small spots of brown or gray near large end.
Condition at Hatching
Downy and helpless.
Nest Description

Open cup of grasses, bark and dead leaves. Leaves may form cap over eggs. Usually on or near ground.

Nest Placement

Ground

Behavior


Foliage Gleaner

Forages mostly in upper half of trees and shrubs. Probes dead leaf clusters in winter. Often hangs upside down.

Conservation

status via IUCN

Least Concern

Blue-winged Warbler populations appear stable, but may have declined slightly between 1966 and 2014, according to the North American Breeding Bird Survey. Partners in Flight estimates a global breeding population of 810,00 with 99% spending some part of the year in the U.S., 32% in Mexico, and 1% breeding in Canada. This U.S.-Canada Stewardship species rates a 13 out of 20 on the Continental Concern Score and are not on the 2014 State of the Birds Watch List. Abandonment of farmlands has increased nesting habitat, but suburban sprawl is decreasing it.

Credits

Range Map Help

Blue-winged Warbler Range Map
View dynamic map of eBird sightings

You Might Also Like

A Golden Plan for a Turnaround: The Golden-winged Warbler Conservation Plan lays out a blueprint for reversing one of the steepest declines of any songbird in the last half-century. Story in Living Bird magazine.

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bird image Blue-winged Warbler by Brian Sullivan

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