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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

Orange-crowned Warbler -- Vermivora celata

RANGE: Breeds from western and central Alaska and central Yukon across Canada to northern Ontario, central Quebec, and southern Labrador south to southwestern and central California, central Utah, southern New Mexico, and extreme western Texas, and east of the Rockies, to southern Saskatchewan, central Ontario, and south-central Quebec. Winters from coastal and southern California, central Arizona, Texas, the southern portion of the Gulf States, and South Carolina south to Central America.

STATUS: Common in the West; rare in the East.

HABITAT: Occurs in a variety of woodland and brushy habitats, especially sites with considerable shrub cover. Prefers chaparral, brushy open woods, woodland edges of low deciduous growth, burns, overgrown pastures, riparian thickets, and the edges of clearings. In Oregon, found in the mountains up to 6,000 feet, inhabiting dense mixed groves of aspen, alder, willow, and pine in meadows of subalpine parks.

SPECIAL HABITAT REQUIREMENTS: Dense shrubs for nesting.

NEST: Conceals nest on the ground in a bramble tangle, hummock, at the base of a bush or stump, or occasionally up to 3 feet high in low, dense bushes.

FOOD: Gleans insects from foliage in shrubs and small trees at heights ranging from 5 to 30 feet. Also eats some spiders, leaf galls, seeds, and fruits.

REFERENCES: Bent 1953a, Griscom and Sprunt 1979, Harrison 1979, Verner and Boss 1980.

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