NORTHERN PARULA – (Setophaga americana)
The Northern parula is a warbler, a family of birds that is part of the passerines. It is a small bird, at 11 cm (4.5 in.) long. The top of the head and the wings are blue-grey, the chest is yellow with a reddish band. In the female the top of the head is yellowish. The underside of the bill is yellow.
The ‘setophaga’ part of the name means ‘moth eater’. The bird’s diet does include moths, as well as other insects and spiders.
The northern parula breeds on PEI and migrates to the east coast of Mexico and the Caribbean. Although considered a species of least concern, the northern parula population is impacted by clearing of bogs, forests spraying of pesticides and clearcutting. Because it nests in epiphytic plants on trees and air pollution has an impact on those plants, breeding areas have also decreased.