[Tweeters] Palm Warbler at Cedar River - Yes

Joshua Glant josh.n.glant at gmail.com
Sun Jan 4 21:58:55 PST 2015

Hello Tweets,

When I visited the Cedar River mouth this afternoon, I found the Palm Warbler in the trees that are within the loop at the north end of the park's road. It was associating with a small group of calling Yellow-rumps (mostly or all Audubon's), so listening for their calls is a good way to find the Palm Warbler. The warblers were hawking a little cloud of gnats near the top of one of the pines.

On a side note, I realized something remarkable about this Palm Warbler: the first time that a Palm Warbler was reported at the Cedar River mouth, at least on eBird, was on January 15th, 2004, the same time during which the state's first Great Black-backed Gull was present. Since then, Palm Warbler(s) have been recorded at the site many of the winters since then: in the winters of 2003-2004, 2006-2007, 2008-2009, a possible chip note heard in the winter of 2009-2010, 2013-2014, and now 2014-2015.

So, that means that there are two possibilities: either this park has been the wintering site of multiple Palm Warblers, which is remarkable in itself, considering the rarity of this species in Puget Sound; or this Palm Warbler is, as far as I can tell, the oldest Palm Warbler ever recorded in the wild, at at least 11 years old and counting!
By the sources I have read, the oldest Palm Warbler yet recorded was about 6.6 years old.

Also, it appears to me that Palm Warbler sightings have increased slightly in the Puget Sound over the past few years. Has anyone else observed this?

Good birding, Joshua Glant

Mercer Island, WA

josh.n.glant at gmail.com

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