In between moments of staring at and trying to photograph distant Snail Kites at Kaliga Park on East Lake Toho in St. Cloud, Florida, Doug, with whom I had been birding all day long, found a Yellow-throated Warbler foraging behind us. And while Snail Kites are awesome, especially when you are adding them to your ABA list, a close and confiding Yellow-throated Warbler is almost irresistible, especially for a New Yorker.

The Yellow-throated Warbler is a wood-warbler that breeds almost exclusively in the southeastern United States.  They winter in Florida, the Caribbean, Mexico, and Central America. In New York City we get them as migratory overshoots though they do stick around and attempt to find a mate on occasion (and there has been documented breeding of the species in the state). Because I rarely get to see Yellow-throated Warbler it was a pleasure to spend time with one that was often foraging at or below eye level on a pleasant winter day in January in Florida. It was especially neat to watch it crawl on tree trunks and branches in a way evocative of a nuthatch and picking bugs off the underside of outdoor lights.

Enjoy these shots of Setophaga dominica and here’s hoping you manage to track one down for yourself this spring!

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Written by Corey
Corey is a New Yorker who lived most of his life in upstate New York but has lived in Queens since 2008. He's only been birding since 2005 but has garnered a respectable life list by birding whenever he wasn't working as a union representative or spending time with his family. He lives in Forest Hills with Daisy and Desmond Shearwater. His bird photographs have appeared on the Today Show, in Birding, Living Bird Magazine, Bird Watcher's Digest, and many other fine publications. He is also the author of the American Birding Association Field Guide to the Birds of New York.