Exploring the Unique World of Georgian Bay’s littlest cottager, the Prairie Warbler!
Have you heard this distinct melody while exploring the eastern Georgian Bay coastline?
This is the song of the Prairie Warbler!
The Prairie Warbler is a migratory songbird that journeys north to Canada for its breeding season and flies back down south in August as the summer season comes to a close. To the rest of the country the Prairie Warbler is an extremely rare species, but here in our neck of the woods, you can hear their quick zippy call all summer!
Their name is quite misleading as the Prairie Warbler prefers to breed in shrubby habitats like rock barrens and sparse forests, not prairies. This however, means our rocky coastline and 30 000 islands is one of their favourite spots as they build their nests in the juniper bushes!
Unfortunately, because this type of habitat is so unique, the growth of towns and the regrowth of forests is resulting in their habitat loss and population decline. Today it is estimated that there are only 300 breeding pairs left in Ontario.
This tiny songbird (breeding male) can be identified by its bright yellow underside, black streaking on its flanks, black eyeliner, black semicircle under the eye, and a chestnut back patch.
Can you pick out the Prairie Warbler?
Now grab your binoculars and see if you can find one for yourself – with an adult!