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Number of species: 80

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Magnolia Warbler - Setophaga magnolia

Age and sex of Magnolia Warblers is normally identifiable by plumage; while sex of some HY individuals cannot be reliably determined, in many cases it is possible if multiple criteria agree

Quick Tips:

  • Look at the primary coverts - on HY/SY birds they are brownish and contrast visibly with the black greater coverts, while on AHY/ASY birds they are blackish and relatively uniform in colour and wear with the greater coverts
  • Check the tail - HY/SY birds have relatively narrow and somewhat tapered rectrices, while AHY/ASY birds have broad and fairly rounded rectrices; also, males tend to have blackish to black tail feathers, while on females they are more dusky
  • In spring look at the face - males have a black mask, while females have a gray face
  • Examine r2 (the second rectrix from the centre) - on AHY/ASY males the white spot is similar in size to that on other rectrices, on AHY/ASY females and HY/SY males the white spot is slightly to moderately smaller than on other rectrices, and on HY/SY females the white spot is absent or considerably smaller than on other rectrices

Species account prepared by McGill Bird Observatory

Click on any image below to bring up the side-by-side comparison tool.
Age / Sex  Image sets 
Hatch year / Female
Primary coverts brownish and contrasting with greater coverts; dark uppertail coverts with grayish-green edging; indistinct dark streaking on flanks; rectrices dark gray and relatively narrow and pointed with no to moderate white on r2
Thumbnail - LD2-26805-51024-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-4352.jpg Thumbnail - LD2-26805-51024-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-4354.jpg Thumbnail - LD2-26805-51024-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-4355.jpg Thumbnail - LD2-26805-51024-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-4353.jpg

Thumbnail - LD2-2680-51035-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-4356.jpg Thumbnail - LD2-2680-51035-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-4357.jpg Thumbnail - LD2-2680-51035-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-4358.jpg
Hatch year / Unknown
Thumbnail - MH3-NA_482-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-989.jpg
After hatch year / Male
Primary coverts blackish, not contrasting with greater coverts; black uppertail coverts with minimal bluish edging; strong black streaks on flanks; rectrices black and broad and rounded with extensive white on r2
Thumbnail - MH3-2480-15355-Dendroica_magnolia-107.jpg Thumbnail - MH3-2480-15355-Dendroica_magnolia-108.jpg Thumbnail - MH3-2480-15355-Dendroica_magnolia-396.jpg Thumbnail - MH3-2480-15355-Dendroica_magnolia-109.jpg
Second year / Male
Black facial patch; primary coverts brownish and sharply contrasting with darker greater coverts; uppertail coverts blackish with some gray; rectrices relatively narrow and pointed with moderate amount of white on r2
Thumbnail - MH3-2100-11393-Dendroica_magnolia-406.jpg Thumbnail - MH3-2100-11393-Dendroica_magnolia-407.jpg Thumbnail - MH3-2100-11393-Dendroica_magnolia-408.jpg

Thumbnail - MH3-NA_307-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-739.jpg

Thumbnail - MH3-NA_308-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-740.jpg

Thumbnail - MH3-NA_309-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-744.jpg Thumbnail - MH3-NA_309-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-741.jpg Thumbnail - MH3-NA_309-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-742.jpg Thumbnail - MH3-NA_309-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-743.jpg
Second year / Female
Gray facial patch; primary coverts brownish and sharply contrasting with darker greater coverts; uppertail coverts dull blackish and edged gray-green; rectrices relatively narrow and pointed with little or no white on r2
Thumbnail - MH3-2110-11390-Dendroica_magnolia-403.jpg Thumbnail - MH3-2110-11390-Dendroica_magnolia-404.jpg Thumbnail - MH3-2110-11390-Dendroica_magnolia-405.jpg

Thumbnail - MH3-NA_304-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-736.jpg

Thumbnail - MH3-NA_305-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-737.jpg

Thumbnail - MH3-NA_306-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-738.jpg
After second year / Male
Black facial patch; primary coverts blackish, not contrasting with greater coverts; black uppertail coverts with minimal bluish edging; broad and rounded rectrices with extensive white on r2
Thumbnail - MH3-NA_302-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-732.jpg

Thumbnail - MH3-NA_303-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-735.jpg Thumbnail - MH3-NA_303-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-733.jpg Thumbnail - MH3-NA_303-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-734.jpg
After second year / Female
Gray facial patch; primary coverts blackish, not contrasting with greater coverts; uppertail coverts blackish with some gray; broad and rounded rectrices with moderate amount of white on r2
Thumbnail - MH3-NA_301-Setophaga_magnolia_AOU_7_52-731.jpg

Additional age / sex class descriptions

The following additional age / sex class descriptions were found for this species:
Age / Sex   Age / Sex class description
Juvenile / Unknown Brownish above, and yellowish-brown below, with distinct buffy wing bars; rectrices already with distinct large white spots
Hatch year / Male Primary coverts brownish and contrasting with darker greater coverts; blackish uppertail coverts with bluish-green edging; distinct black streaking on flanks; rectrices blackish and relatively narrow and pointed with moderate to considerable white on r2
After hatch year / Female Primary coverts blackish, not contrasting with greater coverts; blackish uppertail coverts with bluish-green edging; fine dark streaks on flanks; rectrices blackish and broad and rounded with moderate extent of white on r2
Number of species: 80

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