Friday, February 4, 2011

Celebrating unique Caribbean Treasures–Birdlife of British Virgin Islands

British Virgin Islands Post issued the birdlife stamp series to celebrate unique Caribbean Treasures on year 2004. The stamp set comprised of 10 (ten) single stamps feature the Warbler birds of Caribbean.

5c  Black-and-white Warbler   ( Mniotilta varia )
The Black-and-white Warbler is perhaps the easiest warbler to identify with its distinctive nuthatch-like feeding strategy and contrasting black and white plumage.This species is 13 cm long and weighs 11 g. The summer male Black-and-white Warbler is boldly streaked in black and white, and the bird has been described as a flying humbug. There are two white wing bars. Female and juvenile plumages are similar, but duller and less streaked.
The breeding habitat is broadleaved or mixed woodland, preferably in wetter areas. Black-and-white Warblers nest on the ground, laying 4-5 eggs in a cup nest.This species is migratory, wintering in Florida, Central America and the West Indies down to Peru. This species is a very rare vagrant to western Europe, mainly to Ireland and Great Britain.
These birds feed on insects and spiders, and unlike other warblers, Black-and-white Warblers forage like a nuthatch, moving up and down tree trunks and along branches. The song is a high see wee-see wee-see wee-see wee-see wee-see, and the call is a hard tick.
10c  Prairie Warbler   ( Dendroica discolor )
These birds have yellow underparts with dark streaks on the flanks, and olive upperparts with rusty streaks on the back; they have a yellow line above the eye, a dark line through it, and a yellow spot below it. These birds have black legs, long tails, pale wing bars, and thin pointed bills. Coloring is duller in female and immatures.
Their breeding habitats are brushy areas and forest edges in eastern North America. The Prairie Warbler's nests are open cups, which are usually placed in a low area of a tree or shrub.
These birds are permanent residents in the southern parts of their range. Other birds migrate to northeastern Mexico and islands in the Caribbean.Prairie Warblers forage actively on tree branches, and sometimes fly around with the purpose of catching insects, which are the main food source of these birds.
These birds wag their tail feathers frequently. The numbers of these birds are declining due to habitat loss; this species also suffers from nest parasitism by the Brown-headed Cowbird.
15c  Myrtle Warbler   ( Dendroica coronata)
It breeds in much of Canada and the northeastern USA. It is migratory, wintering in the southeastern United States, eastern Central America, and the Caribbean. It is a rare vagrant to western Europe, and has wintered in Great Britain.
The summer male Myrtle Warbler has a slate blue back, and yellow crown, rump and flank patch. It has white tail patches, and the breast is streaked black. The female has a similar pattern, but the back is brown as are the breast streaks.
These birds are insectivorous, but will readily take wax-myrtle berries in winter, a habit which gives the species its name. Experienced birders recognize Myrtle Warblers with the naked eye by their flycatcher-like habit of making short circling flights from their perch in search of bugs. They form small flocks on migration or in winter.
25c  Worm-eating Warbler  (Helmitheros vermivorum)
The Worm-eating Warbler (Helmitheros vermivorus) is a small New World warbler. It is the only species classified in the genus Helmitheros.It is 13 cm long and weighs 13 g. It is relatively plain with olive-brown upperparts and light-coloured underparts, but has black and light brown stripes on its head. It has a slim pointed bill and pink legs. In immature birds, the head stripes are brownish.
This bird breeds in dense deciduous forests in the eastern United States, usually on wooded slopes. The nest is an open cup placed on the ground, hidden among dead leaves. The female lays 4 or 5 eggs. Both parents feed the young; they may try to distract predators near the nest by pretending to be injured.
In winter, these birds migrate to southern Mexico and Central America.
Worm-eating Warblers eat insects, usually searching in dead leaves or bark on trees and shrubs, also picking through dead leaves on the forest floor. Despite their name, they rarely if ever eat earthworms.
Worm-eating Warblers have disappeared from some parts of their range due to habitat loss. They are vulnerable to nest parasitism by the Brown-headed Cowbird where forests are fragmented.
35c  American Yellow Warbler  ( Dendroica aestiva )
The Yellow Warbler (aestiva group) consist of  6 subspecies breeds in the whole of temperate North America as far south as central Mexico in open, often wet, woods or shrub. It is migratory, wintering in Central and South America. They are very rare vagrants to western Europe.
Depending on subspecies, it may be between 10–18 cm  long, with an average wingspan of about 20 cm .Their weight globally averaging about 16 g .  The summer males of this group are generally the yellowest "warblers" wherever they occur. They are brilliant yellow below and golden-green above. There are usually a few wide washed-out rusty-red streaks on the breast and flanks. The breeding habitat of Yellow Warblers is typically riparian or otherwise moist land with ample growth of small trees, in particular willows (Salix).
40c  Black-throated Blue Warbler    (Dendroica caerulescens)
The Black-throated Blue Warbler, Dendroica caerulescens, is a small songbird of the New World warbler family.Their breeding habitat is located in the interior of deciduous and mixed forests in eastern North America. Their nests are open cups placed in thick shrubs. Their close to ground nesting sites make the Black Throated Blue Warbler a favoured species for the study of warbler behaviour in the wild.
Adult males have white under parts with black throat, face and flanks; the upper parts are deep blue; immature males are similar with upper parts more greenish. Females have olive-brown upper parts and light yellow under parts with darker wings and tail, a grey crown and a brown patch on the cheek. All birds have a small white wing patch which is not always visible, and a thin pointed bill. Like many warblers, this bird has colourful plumage during the spring and summer, but its fall plumage is drab and less distinctive. In the fall, it can still be identified from other similar warblers by its small white wing patch.
These birds migrate to islands in the Caribbean and Central America. They defend their territory against other birds of the same species for both nesting and winter habitats. The Black-throated Blue Warbler is a very rare vagrant to western Europe.
These birds forage actively in low vegetation, sometimes hovering or catching insects in flight. Blue-throated Black Warblers often forage in one area for a while before moving on to the next. These birds mainly eat insects, including caterpillars and crane flies, and spiders. Seeds, berries and fruit may be added to their diets in winter.The population are declining due to the lost of habitat. They need large unbroken forest area for nesting.
The song of this bird is a buzzed zee-zee-zee with an upward inflection. The call is a flat ctuk.
50c  Prothonotary Warbler   ( Protonotaria citrea)
The Prothonotary Warbler (Protonotaria citrea) is a small songbird of the New World warbler family. It is the only member of the genus Protonotaria.The Prothonotary Warbler is 13 cm long and weighs 12.5 g. It has an olive back with blue-grey wings and tail, yellow underparts, a relatively long pointed bill and black legs. The adult male has a bright orange-yellow head; females and immature birds are duller and have a yellow head. In flight from below, the short, wide tail has a distinctive two-toned pattern that is white at the base and dark at the tip.
It breeds in hardwood Swamps in extreme southeastern Ontario and eastern United States. It is the only eastern warbler that nests in natural or artificial cavities, sometimes using old Downy Woodpecker holes. The male often builds several incomplete, unused nests in his territory; the female builds the real nest. It lays 3-7 eggs. It winters in the West Indies, Central America and northern South America.
The preferred foraging habitat is dense, woody streams, where the Prothonotary Warbler forages actively in low foliage, mainly for Insects and snails.These birds are declining in numbers due to loss of habitat.  It is listed as Endangered in Canada.
The song of this bird is a simple, loud, ringing sweet-sweet-sweet-sweet-sweet. The call is a loud, dry chip, like that of a Hooded Warbler. Its flight call is a loud seeep.
60c  Cape May Warbler    (Dendroica tigrina)
The Cape May Warbler, Dendroica tigrina, is a small New World warbler. It breeds in northern North America. Its breeding habitat spans across all but the westernmost parts of southern Canada, and into the Great Lakes region and New England. It is migratory, wintering in the West Indies. This species is a very rare vagrant to western Europe.
The summer male Cape May Warbler has a brown back, yellowish rump and dark brown crown. The underparts are yellow, streaked black, giving rise to the bird's scientific name. The throat and nape are bright yellow and the face is chestnut with a black eyestripe. There is a narrow white wing bar.
Other plumages resemble washed-out versions of the summer male, and, in particular, lack the strong head pattern. The yellowish rump and, at least indications of the white wing bar, are always present.
The breeding habitats of this bird is the edges of coniferous woodland. Cape May Warblers nest in dense foliage near the trunk of a conifer, commonly a Black Spruce, and lay 4-9 eggs in a cup nest.
This species is insectivorous. It picks insects up from the tips of conifer branches or flies out to catch insects in flight. The Cape May Warbler also feeds on berry juice and nectar in winter, and has, uniquely for a warbler, a tubular tongue to facilitate this action.
The song of the Cape May Warbler is a simple repetition of high tsi notes. The call is a thin sip. This bird usually sings from high perches.
75c  Northern Parula    (Parula americana)
The Northern Parula, Parula americana, is a small New World warbler. It breeds in eastern North America from southern Canada to Florida.This species is migratory, wintering in southern Florida, northern Central America, the West Indies and most of the Lesser Antilles. This species is a very rare vagrant to western Europe.
The Northern Parula is 11 cm long and has mainly gray upper parts, with a greenish back patch and two white wing bars. The breast is yellowish shading into the white belly. The summer male has bluish and rufous breast bands and prominent white eye crescents. Females are duller and lack the breast bands. The breeding habitat is humid woodland with growths of Old Man's Beard lichen or Spanish moss.
Northern Parulas nest in trees in clumps of these mosses, laying 3-7 eggs in a scantily lined cup nest.These birds feed on insects and spiders. Their song is a click-like trill or buzz, zeeeeee-yip. Their call is a soft chip.
2.75$    Palm Warbler    (Dendroica palmarum)
The Palm Warbler, Dendroica palmarum, is a small songbird of the New World warbler family.The rusty-capped Palm Warbler can be most easily recognized by the tail-wagging habit that shows off its yellow undertail. It breeds in open coniferous bogs and winters primarily in the southern United States and Caribbean.Their nests take the form of an open cup, usually situated on or near the ground in an open area.
These birds migrate to the southeastern United States, the Yucatán Peninsula, islands of the Caribbean, and eastern Nicaragua south to Panama to winter.Palm Warblers forage on the ground much more than other warblers, sometimes flying to catch insects. These birds mainly eat insects and berries. The song of this bird is a monotonous buzzy, trill. The call is a sharp chek.
The species comprises two distinct subspecies that may merit specific status.
"Yellow Palm-Warbler" (D. p. hypochrysea) of the eastern third of the breeding range has brownish-olive upper parts and thoroughly yellow underparts with bold rufous breast and flank streaking. It migrates later in the fall than its western counterpart.
"Western Palm-Warbler" (D. p. palmarum) inhabits the remaining western two-thirds of the breeding range. It has much less yellow below, with less colorful streaking, and cold grayish-brown upper parts.


  1. These are beautiful - I love bird stamps.
    You are welcome to join me for Sunday stamps: a new meme where we share interesting stamps together.

    1. Your blog it look very simple and nice. Please do same and joint to my blog and put my blog link to your blog. Thanks


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