English and Scientific names:

Townsend's Warbler    Dendroica townsendi

Number of individuals: 


Locality: LOUISIANA: 


Specific Locality:

Fort Jackson Woods

Date(s) when observed:

December 29, 2009

Time(s) of day when observed:  

About 10:30 AM

Reporting observer and address:

Glenn Ousset
Chalmette, La 70043

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

First spotted and identified by Phillip Wallace.

Other observers who independently identified the bird(s)


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

When identified was in strong daylight.

Optical equipment: 

 10x40 binoculars in good condition.

Distance to bird(s): 

About 30 to 40 ft up.

Duration of observation:

About 1 minute of identifying views during about 20 minutes of observation.


Open brushy woodland of tall Live Oaks and a few other hardwoods.

Behavior of bird: 

Observed bird while it foraged overhead in canopy foliage of Live Oaks, moving with a feeding group that consisted of a Yellow-throated Warbler, an Orange-crowned Warbler, a Blue-headed Vireo, a Ruby-crowned Kinglet, and several Blue-gray Gnatcatchers.


Greenish back, two white wing bars, Oval yellow face with yellow seperated by dark area through eye and broadening behind eye. Mostly white underside with yellow breast and yellow continuing down side with dark streaking that seemed faint - perhaps due to distance.


On December 3, 2009, in this woodlot, I observed briefly- less than 1 second with a clear view- a warbler that I thought could be a Townsend\'s if my impression of what I saw was correct. It was moving with a feeding group of the same composition as the one of Dec 29. I observed it from about 15 ft at eye level getting only a side view. From that angle, I could see only black, yellow, and white. The head above the yellow face appeared very dark. I did not notice the broad ear patch area. The black line through the eye seemed more narrow, but I did not have time to really focus in on that feature. The black throat continued down the side as prominent black streaking through the yellow on the side. The lower belly and undertial area was white.
I have not yet seen any of the video or stills taken on Dec 29, not even my own brief video. My visual impression on Dec 29 was of a bird with much less black than on Dec 3. Distance and angle of view may be responsible for the difference.



Similar species:

No warbler or other species has the same combination of color and pattern.

Photographs or tape recordings obtained?

Brief video by myself. Not attached.

Previous experience with this species: 

Two previous observations in California and Costa Rica.

Identification aids:

Sibley guide consulted after observation.

This description is written from: 

Memory of description composed during observation.

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



Date and time: 

December 31, 2009, 9:00pm