After a long cold winter nothing warmed my heart so much as seeing returning feathered friends. Last year we spent many happy hours watching a pair of golden prothonotary warblers courting, nesting and raising their young in a bird house near our back porch. They have returned!
We can really only assume it is the same pair, or at least the same male. He arrived April 11th this year and began inspecting three of the bird houses, singing intensely at each one. There is another male in the area on the other side of my studio and between them, there is a call and counter-call in clear throaty notes. They seem to measure their individual territory by how far the song can be heard.
A few days later a female arrived. Her paler gold feathers inspiring him to greater emphasis of song. He landed at a bird house entrance and popped in, quickly followed by her. After a few minutes showing her around he left for her to explore the accommodations. She must have been impressed because she followed him to one of the other bird houses to repeat the tour in another abode.
This afternoon she flew off and he continued to visit each of the available houses, singing lustily at each. No doubt she went to check out the neighboring male’s chosen offerings but we are convinced that she will ultimately choose one of our male’s sites for her nest.