The “Warbling Pool” threw up another confusing fall warbler this afternoon, illustrated in the pictures that follow. We think we know what it was but because of the circumstances are not totally convinced – what do you think?
As you can see, the bird was bathing and at one point got washed over the edge of the waterfall before scrambling back and so became thoroughly wet through – and, as we all know, wet feathers can give some additional confusion by revealing features that are not actually present in a neat and tidy dry bird.
So – here we have a fall Warbler with grey back, pronounced white eye-ring, no wing-bars and a yellow chest and stomach. That narrows the ID down to a Canada Warbler or a Nashville Warbler. If it was a CAWA there would be a necklace around its throat, unless it was was a first year female in which case the necklace would barely be visible. The trouble here is that the wetting of the feathers and their displacement reveals dark patches that are either just dark wet feathers or a faint necklace so is it real or artefact? The grey cheeks appear shaded into the yellow throat (= NAWA) but that could be water artefact also (=CAWA). On balance we tend towards Nashville, and they are more probable and quite frequent around here, but there is an element of doubt. We didn’t get any views other than the angles in the photographs.
What do you think?