English and Scientific names:

Black-whiskered Vireo (Vireo altiloquus)

Number of individuals: 

1 in alternate plumage

Locality: LOUISIANA: 

Jefferson Parish

Specific Locality:

Grand Isle- Landry/Sureway Tract

Date(s) when observed:

4/19/2009, Sunday

Time(s) of day when observed:  


Reporting observer and address:

Edward J. Raynor 

Destrehan, LA

Other observers accompanying reporter who also identified the bird(s):

Hannah Tetreault

Other observers who independently identified the bird(s)


Light conditions (position of bird in relation to shade and to direction and amount of light):

Great lighting, under live oaks on east side of woods in "vetch area" near orange house.

Optical equipment: 

Nikon Premier 8 x 42 7L binocular

Distance to bird(s): 

10 to 30 feet

Duration of observation:

Approximately 5 minutes


Live Oak, Vetch and leaves on ground

Behavior of bird: 

Wile observing the warbler frenzy near the orange house, I noticed a non-warbler fly in. The bird landed in a Live Oak on the south side of the "vetch patch" trail.


Instantly, I knew it was a Red-eyed type Vireo and then I noticed a black malar stripe and moderately bright yellow undertail coverts and flanks. While watching the bird forage at eye level and even on the ground I became aware that the black malar stripe was much more pronounced than the BWVI that I saw last year at this event in the Grilletta tract. At almost first glimpse, I knew this vireo was different from Red-eyed Vireos seen in the Sureway woods and Grilleta tract earlier that day and weekend. I felt the bird was somewhat larger than a Red-eyed. The large bill and malar stripe were the first plumage features that I looked for and confirmed after noticing the larger bill. 


The vireo called briefly while foraging in the Live Oaks towards the parking lot before it flew off to the west at 8:45am.

Similar species:

Differentiated from Red-eyed Vireo (Vireo olivaceus) by large bill and very distinct black malar stripe

Photographs or tape recordings obtained?


Previous experience with this species: 

3 individuals, presumed 2 adults and young, in Key Largo State Park in Florida on 8/23/06. 1 individual at Grilleta tract-Grand Isle, LA on 4/20/08 with the Boslers the morning after Dittmann and Cardiff's discovery that previous evening, 4/19/08, during the Grand Isle Migratory Bird festival.

Identification aids:


This description is written from: 

Notes taken after observation

Are you positive of your identification? If not, explain: 



Date and time: 

Yes7/26/09. However, I sent another long form in on 5/2/09 at 7:46pm but it was not received.