Trip report: The Warbler Tour – Kentucky, Ohio, and Michigan (May 2019) by Tropical Birding

Guided by Andres Vasquez.This was a set departure tour.

Scoring ALL of Eastern North America’s Warbler species (37 in total), on this year’s tour was by far the best to the date. As a group, we got every one of the Parulids possible in Eastern USA including the only one that was elusive to us the previous time we ran this tour, the skittish Connecticut Warlber which was seen by most of the participants but sadly not all. Almost all of the other warblers were seen well by everyone including for instance “the big K”, Kirtland’s, the shy Mourning, Cerulean, and Swainson’s Warblers, to name a few of the “hard ones”. We also had great photo opportunities for most if not all of the warblers, with repeated eye-level views of basically all of them.

Apart from this family of songbirds, (which is the main target of the tour of course), we always try to get as many of the other residents and migrant birds as we can. This tour is very dynamic and is meant to follow the local bird news in order to chase unusual or rare birds that may show up within easy reach. In this way, we chased (and found/twitched, as the British say) a lone Whooping Crane, various Evening Grosbeaks, a pair of Yellow-headed Blackbirds, Least Bittern, Little Gull, Long-tailed Duck, Clay-colored Sparrow, Bobolinks, Dickcissel, and a few more.

In the mammal list of 12 species seen, a short view of a Bobcat was a highlight, the same with the various views of American Porcupines we got at Tawas, MI.

FULL The Warbler Tour (USA) trip report May 2020 (pdf format; 4.5 MB file)