Verification of Unusual Sight Record
For Utah

Rec. # 14-2001

Common name:

Prairie Warbler

Scientific name: Dendroica discolor
Date: 9-29-01
Time: 10:30
Length of time observed: 30 minutes
Number: 1
Age: adult
Sex: dull male, I think
Location: Quail Creek
County: Washington
Distance to bird: 10 ft or less
Optical equipment: zeiss 10X42
Weather: sunny
Light Conditions: excellent , very clear views of the bird, it came in to the tape for my second viewing and was in dead branches at head height about 8ft or less away.
Detailed description of bird: It was a warbler. It had a black line through the eye and pale yellow above and below which gave it sort of the appearance of having a broken eye ring. The top of head to the top of the tail appeared a dull charcoal gray with greenish tones. Sometimes a little white would show thru from the bottom of the tail. The bird was yellow from the beak to the tail with black striping along the sides. The striping was wider than an Audubons and sort of blurry. The under tail was white. It wagged its tail like a Palm Warbler. This bird was much more like the picture in the National Geographic than the Sibley which make the bird look real green.
Song or call & method of delivery: I could not hear it calling, but I often cannot hear calls. After I viewed the bird foraging and feeding for about 5 minutes I lost it. I then returned to my car to check my field guide. Upon determining that my tentative ID was correct I returned to the general area and searched again for it. When I could not find it I played a Prairie Warbler on my CD. It came in very quickly and closely and hunted for the sound.
Behavior: Foraging, feeding and responding to the tape.
Habitat:  riparian, cottonwoods, willows, some cattails.
Similar species and
how were they eliminated:
My first glance I thought an Audubon male retaining breeding plumage. Then I noticed that the eye was not a broken eye ring and not white, but pale yellow. Then I noticed that the whole underside to the vent of the bird was yellow not just the throat and sides. The striping was wider and not as crisp as a Audubon's. My next thought was Magnolia, but the bird lacked the gray crown, and bold white wingbar. I also thought of pine warbler but they are very dull and much more a greenish yellow bird. This bird appeared to dark gray and yellow and the streaks were too distinct.
Previous experience with this & similar species: I have birded extensively in Texas and the East and have seen all the Eastern Warblers and they are my favorite birds. I have seen this bird many times although this is my first time this year, unless I saw it in January.
References consulted: National Geographic 3rd edition and Sibley.
Description from: Notes taken at time of sighting
Observer: Dana Green
Observer's address: 14490 Majestic Oaks Lane
Observer's e-mail address:
Other observers who independently identified
this bird:
 I called Merrill Webb and Rick Fridell to come see this bird and they both subsequently found the bird and IDed it.
Date prepared: 9-30-01
Additional material: Hopefully someone will get a picture.
Additional Comments: I love being able to do this so quickly and easily on the internet. Suggestion: It would be nice if I could edit for typos and grammatical errors and see if I am saying what I think I am saying.

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