Beak of the Week – Pine Warbler

Pine Warbler (Setophaga pinus)

Family: Parulidae

Pine Warblers are yellowish birds with olive backs, whitish bellies, and two prominent white wingbars on gray wings. Adult males are the brightest; females and immatures are more subdued and can even appear gray-brown. No bird is more aptly named: it nests exclusively in pine trees, spends much of its life there, and only during migration is found in shrubbery or the deciduous growth of parks and gardens.

Pine warblers are more easily heard than seen high in the pines. Their song is a musical trill that Audubon described phonetically as a trr-rr-rr-rr, which sounds similar to that of a Chipping Sparrow or Dark-eyed Junco, both common pineywoods sounds through much of the year.

Pine Warblers are year-round residents of our area, although our resident birds are joined in the winter by flocks of Pine Warblers coming from further north. Primarily insect eaters, they are among the few warblers that readily eats seeds and also supplement their diet with berries. You may find them at both your seed and suet feeders. Their adaptability to foods other than insects probably accounts for their ability to remain here all year.

 Visit our Bird Gallery to read about other Texas birds! 

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