Their dark eye stands out against their bright yellow face. The males have reddish streaks on their chest. They are hard to miss when they are perched on the end of a green leafy branch.
You can find them throughout most of the US, but they breed from the middle of the country north all the way up to Alaska.
You can see that this one is a male, see the streaks on his chest. They have a very early migration, usually flying at night, south to the tropics, during the month of August.
They have cup like nests that cowbirds will often lay their eggs in (for the Yellow Warbler to take care of and feed), but the Yellow Warblers are smart! They’ll just put in a new floor over the cowbirds eggs and lay some more of their own.
There was even one recorded case where the cowbirds returned 5 times to lay more eggs on each new floor, but the Yellow Warbler went on to build 6 layers of floors over all of the cowbirds eggs!
Often you’ll see them foraging from the lower levels of trees all the way to the tops. They eat insects, but they favor various kinds of caterpillars.
They have a pretty song and the male will defend their nesting territories by singing.