Hermit Warbler Life History


Habitat ForestsTall coniferous forests, especially of Douglas-fir.Back to top


Food InsectsInsects and spiders.Back to top


Nest Placement

Nest Tree

Nest Description

Open cup of fine twigs, rootlets, dry moss, bark, pine needles, and spider silk. Lined with fine plant fibers and hair. Placed on top of conifer branches, well concealed from above.

Nesting Facts
Clutch Size:4-5 eggs
Egg Description:Creamy white with fine dark speckles around large end.
Condition at Hatching:Helpless with tufts of down.
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Behavior Foliage GleanerGleans insects of middle and outer portion of tree branches. Often hovers.Back to top


Conservation Low ConcernHermit Warbler populations were stable between 1966 and 2015, according to the North American Breeding Bird Survey. Partners in Flight estimates a global breeding population of 2.5 million, with 100% breeding and migrating through the U.S., and 82% wintering in Mexico. The species rates an 11 out of 20 on the Continental Concern Score. Hermit Warbler is not on the 2016 State of North America's Birds' Watch List. It is a U.S.-Canada Stewardship species. Because of its specialized habitat and its small range, Hermit Warbler may be vulnerable to habitat alteration. Townsend's Warbler may be displacing the species in parts of its range. Back to top


Lutmerding, J. A. and A. S. Love. Longevity records of North American birds. Version 2015.2. Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Bird Banding Laboratory 2015.

Partners in Flight (2017). Avian Conservation Assessment Database. 2017.

Pearson, S. F. (2000). Behavioral asymmetries in a moving hybrid zone. Behavioral Ecology 11 (1):84-92.

Pearson, Scott F. (2013). Hermit Warbler (Setophaga occidentalis), version 2.0. In The Birds of North America (P. G. Rodewald, editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York, USA.

Rohwer, S. and C. Wood. (1998). Three hybrid zones between Hermit and Townsend's Warblers in Washington and Oregon. Auk 115 (2):284-310.

Sauer, J. R., D. K. Niven, J. E. Hines, D. J. Ziolkowski Jr., K. L. Pardieck, J. E. Fallon, and W. A. Link (2017). The North American Breeding Bird Survey, Results and Analysis 1966–2015. Version 2.07.2017. USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Laurel, MD, USA.

Sibley, D. A. (2014). The Sibley Guide to Birds, second edition. Alfred A. Knopf, New York, USA.

Stephenson, T. and S. Whittle (2013). The Warbler Guide. Princeton University Press, New Jersey, USA.

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