The Yellow-rumped Warbler is a small passerine bird that can be found in the Americas. They measure around 5 to 5.5 inches (12.7 to 14 cm) in length and weigh around 0.4 to 0.5 ounces (11 to 14 grams). Their wingspan is around 8.5 to 9 inches (21.6 to 22.9 cm). They are easily distinguished by their yellow rump, which gives them their name. Their breeding plumage includes a bright yellow throat and breast, with a gray back and white belly. They have a black mask around their eyes, and their wings are bluish-gray with white wing bars. In the fall and winter, their plumage becomes less vibrant, and they appear more drab, with a brownish-gray back, a white belly, and faint streaking on their flanks.
Yellow-rumped Warblers are migratory birds that breed in North America and winter in Central and South America. In the breeding season, they can be found in coniferous and mixed forests, where they build their nests on tree branches. During migration and winter, they can be found in a variety of habitats, including deciduous forests, shrublands, and even urban parks and gardens. They are known for their ability to survive in cold temperatures, and can often be seen foraging for insects on tree trunks and branches even in the winter.
In addition to their distinctive plumage, Yellow-rumped Warblers are known for their unique foraging behavior. They often hover in the air, like a tiny hummingbird, while they catch insects on the wing. They also frequently flick their tails and spread their wings, revealing their white wing patches, which may help to flush out hidden insects. Their diet consists of insects, berries, and other fruits.
Yellow-rumped Warblers are a common sight for birdwatchers throughout their range. In North America, they are one of the most widespread warblers, with a range that spans from Alaska to Mexico. During migration, they can often be found in large flocks, and their distinctive calls and songs make them easy to identify. They are a popular target for bird photographers, who often capture their striking plumage and unique foraging behavior.