Hi Ben,
Your descriptions of appearance and behavior certainly sound like a male Black-throated Blue Warbler.  That would be the third this fall for the Gaddy Garden - 2 males, 1 female.  The first, a calendar-worthy male was discovered on Wednesday, 2 September, but not seen after that.  The second, a female, was seen on Friday, 2 October, also a one-day wonder.  Let's hope yours stays around for awhile, though the weather report would not entice him.  We see the migrants more often in the fall than the spring, but they are much sought after and often missed.  Most seem to migrate from Canada along the east coast.
Ohio's shore of Lake Erie is the jumping off place for many in the spring as they head to Canada through Point Pelee and return south.
Thanks for your first post, highlighting one of our favorite birds.  Welcome to St Louis!
Jackie Chain
St Louis County
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--- On Tue, 10/13/09, Ben Solomon <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

From: Ben Solomon <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Tower Grove - First post(!) and Black-throated Blue Warbler?
To: [log in to unmask]
Date: Tuesday, October 13, 2009, 10:21 AM

Hi everyone

In honor of my new binoculars, I decided to make my first post to the list serve! Today I stopped by the bird garden at Tower Grove around 8am. For the most part, it was pretty typical of what other have been seeing:

Winter Wren
Carolina Wren
Blue Jays
Red-bellied Woodpeckers
Blue-headed Vireo

However, potentially of interest was a bird that I believed to be a Black-throated Blue Warbler. I've only lived in St. Louis for a couple months so I'm not sure if this is unusual, but according to my field guide it is a little out of range. Here is the description I wrote down after I saw it:

"Small to medium sized songbird. Roughly the size of a sparrow or maybe a large warbler. Dark blue top, grading to black around face and flanks. White belly with a noticeable splotch of white on the wings. Found in brushy understory. Actively flitting from branch to branch."

What do you think?

Ben Solomon
St. Louis, MO
The Audubon Society of Missouri's Wild Bird Discussion Forum
ASM Website:

The Audubon Society of Missouri's Wild Bird Discussion Forum
ASM Website: