Last week I took a long walk in a new (to me) Forest Preserve. The wonderful thing about the county I live in, is they have gone to much expense to preserve and restore the wetlands and forested areas around us. They repurchase land whenever the budget allows and then try to return it to it's native status. The walks and fences are well maintained and they are a wonderful place to spend personal quiet time ... walk, walk, walk, keep that old body in it's post Switzerland mountain climbing shape! Wishful thinking, but worth the effort:)
On this walk I could hear a lot of birds, but couldn't see them until I came upon this little fella ... A Yellow-rumped Warbler male. They are normally much more striking in color (being a slate gray, darker mask and much brighter yellow patches, but, like the Finch, they molt into this duller color over the winter. They pass through here in the spring and fall during migration. I don't believe they ever stay as this is the only time of year I ever see them.
Bon Voyage my little feathered friend ... safe travels :)