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Pine Warblers offer a rare look for backyard birders

Pine Warbler
Pine Warbler
© Thickstock

Birds in the warbler family are famous for being blind to the charms of the backyard feeder. One exception is the Pine Warbler. In this species, the backyard birder can find the perfect introduction to the fascinating and diverse warbler family. In the Americas, there are 113 warbler species, and what they have in common is a love for insects.

Like finches, warblers are small, fast-moving birds. It is not unheard of for the Pine Warbler to be mistaken for the American Goldfinch. One easy way to tell the difference is to know a bit about beak shapes.

The shape of a warbler’s beak is distinctively different from a finch’s, and both are designed for their preferred protein source. Warblers have long slender beaks, perfect for reaching into the crevices of tree bark and other tight spaces to grab insects. Birds in the finch family have cone-shaped beaks that are designed to crush the hulls of seeds.

Pine Warblers are often found, you guessed it, flitting in the tops of pine trees, singing their trilling songs and poking around for insects. Life in the pines means they also eat pine seeds, so they’re equally at home foraging on the ground and visiting feeders to supplement their diets — something you don't see in other warbler species. Lyric’s Fruit and Nut Mix features many Pine Warbler favorites, including dried cherries, peanuts and corn. Fill your feeder and enjoy a rare visit from the warbler family!

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