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BIRD OF THE MONTH!

September 2021 Bird Of Month
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Northern Parula

Northern Parulas are small wood-warblers (about the size of a Kinglet) with a short tail and a thin, pointy bill. A warbler of the upper canopy, the Northern Parula flutters at the edges of branches plucking insects. This bluish gray warbler with yellow highlights breeds in forests laden with Spanish moss or beard lichens, from Florida to the boreal forest, and it's sure to give you "warbler neck." It hops through branches bursting with a rising buzzy trill that pinches off at the end. Its white eye crescents, chestnut breast band, and yellow-green patch on the back set it apart from other warblers. Adult females are a bit paler and typically lack the male's breast band. Before this species received the name Northern Parula (a diminutive form of parus, meaning little titmouse), Mark Catesby, an English naturalist, called it a "finch creeper" and John James Audubon and Alexander Wilson called it a "blue yellow-backed warbler." Long-distance migrant. Parulas spend the winter months in Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. Can be seen locally during migration.

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Loess Hills Audubon Society meets at the Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center, 4500 Sioux River Road the first Thursday of the month during the months of October thru May at 7:30 P.M. The first meeting of the year is the annual potluck at Stone Lodge in Stone State Park at 6:00 P.M.

Each of these meetings includes a quality program of various subjects. The public is invited and welcome to attend these meetings. Check the Meetings Page for information on upcoming programs.

Birding outings occur monthly. The public is invited and welcome to attend these outings. Check the Outings Page for information on upcoming outings.

Loess Hills Audubon Society
PO Box 5133
Sioux City, IA 51102
https://lhas.tripod.com/
 
 

Mission Statement

The Loess Hills Audubon Society exists to educate individuals and the general public, to enjoy and promote birding, to support ornithology, and to be an advocate for wild areas and environmental issues.

 

"Loess Hills Audubon Society is a Chapter of National Audubon Society, Inc."

Last Month's Bird Of The Month

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American Goldfinch

This handsome little finch, the state bird of Iowa, is common at feeders, where it takes primarily sunflower and niger. They are active, acrobatic finches that balance on the seedheads of thistles, dandelions, and other plants to pluck seeds. They have a bouncy flight during which they make their po-ta-to-chip calls. Spring males are brilliant yellow and shiny black with a bit of white. Females and all winter birds are more dull but identifiable by their conical bill; pointed, notched tail; wingbars; and lack of streaking. They breed later than most North American birds and wait to nest until June or July when milkweed, thistle, and other plants have produced their fibrous seeds, which goldfinches incorporate into their nests and also feed their young. They are among the strictest vegetarians in the bird world, selecting an entirely vegetable diet and only inadvertently swallowing an occasional insect. When Brown-headed Cowbirds lay eggs in an American Goldfinch nest, the cowbird egg may hatch but the nestling seldom survives longer than three days. The cowbird chick simply can’t survive on the all-seed diet that goldfinches feed their young. Short distance migrant and found locally year round.