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Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

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Forest and Rangeland Birds of the United States

Natural History and Habitat Use

Kentucky Warbler -- Oporornis formosus

RANGE: Breeds from southeastern Nebraska, southwestern Wisconsin, southern Michigan, central Ohio, southern Pennsylvania, and southeastern New York south to eastern Texas, the Gulf Coast, central Georgia, and South Carolina. Casual in southwestern States. Winters from Mexico south to northern South America.

STATUS: Common.

HABITAT: Inhabits shrubby woodland borders and the understory of damp or shady deciduous woods, favoring moist ravines and bottomlands. Often found near water and at low elevations.

NEST: Generally builds nest on the ground among plants at the base of shrubs and trees, or under branches of fallen limbs. Occasionally places nest near the ground in shrubs. Commonly victimized by brown-headed cowbirds.

FOOD: Gleans most food from leaves on the ground, but occasionally catches insects from low leaves and branches. Mostly eats spiders and insects.

REFERENCES: DeGaris 1936, Griscom and Sprunt 1979, Sykes in Farrand 1983c.

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