Kirtland's Warbler: Rare, medium-sized warbler with black-streaked gray upperparts and yellow underparts with black streaks on sides. The face is black with a broken white eye-ring. Legs, feet, and bill are black. It is a ground nester, prefers Jack Pine stands over 80 acres in size.
Range and Habitat
Kirtland's Warbler: Breeds in upper and lower Michigan in 13 counties from Lake Huron west to Kalkaska County, and from Presque Isle County south to Ogemaw County. Winters throughout the Bahama Islands. Nests exclusively in young jack-pine forests 80 acres or larger with numerous small, grassy openings. Winters in the Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos.
The endangered Kirtland's warbler is one of the rarest members of the wood warbler family.
It was not until 1903 that Norman A. Wood discovered the first nest in Oscoda County in northern lower Michigan. Until 1996, all nests were found within 60 miles of this site.
There is a Kirtland's Warbler Festival, which is sponsored in part by Kirtland Community College.
A group of kirtland's warblers are collectively known as a "scarcity" of warblers.
The Kirtland's Warbler is evaluated as Near Threatened at this time. This rating is based upon the relatively small size of its range and its population. Since 1987, at which time conservation efforts were begun, the numbers of Kirtland's Warbler have increased, but its range remains small. This breed primarily breeds in the northern and central portions of Michigan. Overall, the population of Kirtland's Warbler has declined by 33% since the mid-20th century. This bird species was once native to the Bahamas as well as Turks and Caicos at one time.