Unrequited yellowthroat


The Common Yellowthroat is a warm-season warbler that is found in our patchy fields and wetlands. It feeds and breeds locally.

I encountered a canoodling couple in some wetlands. Each hung around the other bearing a grub to offer a potential mate. Yellowthroat protocol requires that the male follows the female until she flutters her wings as a signal that she’s ready to mate. Yet, while each bird paid close attention to the other, she never gave the signal.

Each Common Yellowthroat (female on wire, male flying up) brings a grub to offer the other.

The two of them seem to compare their grub offerings, but to no effect.

They got together at various places along the wires of a fence.

But, she ultimately took her grubs and went off on her own.

And he abandoned the quest — for now.


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5 Responses to Unrequited yellowthroat

  1. Jean Simpson says:

    What beautiful little birds – I have never seen them.

  2. Della C. Fenkner says:

    What an exquisite tiny “movie”
    of bird behaviour. Thank you for bringing us insights
    into this magical world.

  3. Karen Pidcock says:

    Thanks so, Alistair, for these up close views of the CYT, who hides so well, that I’ve never really seen one! While spending 2 nights on the W. Butte just across the Alberta border and Milk River, in Montana’s Sweet Grass Hills, I heard them singing incessantly in the grove along the stream, beside the hunting lodge I was offered by never before met ranching family…such an amazingly beautiful gift of my 16 day journey into the prairie lands of Alberta, Saskatchewan, & Montana I love so much.

  4. Christine Boyd says:

    Yes, a very sweet little movie! I’ve never seen a common yellowthroat. Thank you Alistair.

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