Date: 10/7/18 7:48 am
From: <birderick...>
Subject: [MDBirding] Philadelphia Vireo (again)
I'm only one bird away from setting my personal goal for the Yard Big Year, so I was expecting more today. The weather was once again mild, muggy (damp), lightly foggy and nearly without a breeze, so viewing conditions were ok. but there was very little activity.
The only highlight was a PHILADELPHIA VIREO (perhaps the same one seen here two days ago) slowly feeding in the back trees with a Red-eyed vireo. I watched them for about 15 minutes as they stayed in the same area for that long, allowing me time to study them both and compare them side-by-side. At one point they were both perched one above the other, only inches apart, in the same binocular field. The Philadelphia was a nice soft yellow from throat to lower breast, with a whitish belly and yellow vent, while the Red-eyed was whitish below except for a soft yellow vent area. But the shapes are so different; the Philadelphia is all round curves, short tailed and plump, round in the head and body, while the Red-eyed looks elongated like it was grabbed at either end and stretched out. I was glad for the opportunity to compare them so closely and so long. The faces are different too, the Philadelphia having a shy soft expression, while the Red-eyed looks harsh and angry. At one point I watched the Philadelphia Vireo hover-glean in the manner of some warblers, as it flew up to snatch the fruit from a Virginia Creeper vine. They were actively feeding in an area with several different vines/fruits growing up along the trees; mile-a minute vine, VA creeper, wild grape, bittersweet and poison ivy.
My little hummer is still here, and I've cleaned and refilled the feeders.
Rick Sussman

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