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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

Warbling Vireo -- Vireo gilvus

RANGE: Breeds from southeastern Alaska, northern British Columbia, and southern Mackenzie southeast to southern Ontario and southern New Brunswick, south to northern Mexico, Alabama, and Virginia. Winters mostly in Mexico and Central America.

STATUS: Common and widespread.

HABITAT: Inhabits open deciduous and mixed deciduous-coniferous forests, especially streamside vegetation, but also in groves, scrubby hillside trees, and residential areas. In mixed forests, generally associated with the deciduous trees, and prefers forests with a substantial forb or shrub layer and low to intermediate canopy cover.

SPECIAL HABITAT REQUIREMENTS: Scattered deciduous trees or wooded streamsides.

NEST: Builds a cup nest that is usually suspended from a horizontal branch of a deciduous tree, often poplar or aspen, generally in branches well away from the tree trunk and higher than those of other vireos (20 to 90 feet above the ground).

FOOD: Gleans much of its food from the mid to upper canopy of deciduous trees. Eats mostly animal matter but includes some small fruits.

REFERENCES: Chapin 1925, DeGraff et al. 1980, Forbush and May 1955, Harrison 1975, James 1976, Johnsgard 1979.

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