English and Scientific names:

Black-whiskered Vireo, Vireo altiloquus

Number of individuals: 

One bird

Locality: LOUISIANA: 

Cameron Parish 

Specific Locality:

The bird was seen along the marsh loop trail in Sabine National Wildlife Refuge, in bushes on the north side of the trail a few dozen feet west of the comfort station.

Date(s) when observed:

May 7, 2009 

Time(s) of day when observed:  

bout 10:30 AM

Reporting observer and address:

John Sevenair

New Orleans LA 70124

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

Nancy Newfield

Other observers who independently identified the bird(s)

not known

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

It was a cloudy day; lighting was diffuse. The bird was north of us in a large bush with relatively few leaves.

Optical equipment: 

Zeiss 7x42 binoculars

Distance to bird(s): 

ten or fifteen feet 

Duration of observation:

a minute or two 


A row of bushes (I think wax myrtle predominates, but more capable plant people than I can look at the photograph). This is along a levee that separates two areas of fresh marsh with some open water. 

Behavior of bird: 

The bird was making short flights and hopping around in a large bush. Its flights were maybe 1 to 3 feet long. I think it was feeding, but I was concentrating on focusing the camera more than on the bird. After a minute or two of this it flew across the paved trail and I lost track of it. 


A medium-sized passerine, a bit shorter than a nearby Orchard Oriole and perhaps a bit more chunky in outline. The back was a medium brown and the breast and belly were pale brown. The top of the head was dark, the area above the eye was paler, there was a black streak through the eye, the area below the eye was like the area above the eye, and there was a black whisker mark below that. The feet and beak were black.


Not heard. 

Similar species:

The most similar species is Red-eyed Vireo. This bird looked very similar to one of these, but it had a black whisker mark, as the Red-eyed does not.

Photographs or tape recordings obtained?

I got a photo and will send it in. 

Previous experience with this species: 

I've seen it a few times before in Louisiana, but not recently.

Identification aids:

Nancy Newfield first found the bird and identified it.

After observation: http://bna.birds.cornell.edu/bna/species/607/articles/introduction 

This description is written from: 

Partly from memory and partly from the photo. 

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


I'm positive


John P. Sevenair

Date and time: 

May 8, 2009, at 10:50 AM