Setophaga castanea - (Wilson, 1810)
Bay-breasted Warbler
Other English Common Names: bay-breasted warbler
Synonym(s): Dendroica castanea (Wilson, 1810)
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Dendroica castanea (A. Wilson, 1810) (TSN 178912)
French Common Names: paruline à poitrine baie
Spanish Common Names: Chipe Castaño
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.105277
Element Code: ABPBX03220
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Vertebrates - Birds - Perching Birds
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Craniata Aves Passeriformes Parulidae Setophaga
Genus Size: D - Medium to large genus (21+ species)
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: American Ornithologists' Union (AOU). 1998. Check-list of North American birds. Seventh edition. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C. [as modified by subsequent supplements and corrections published in The Auk]. Also available online: http://www.aou.org/.
Concept Reference Code: B98AOU01NAUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Dendroica castanea
Taxonomic Comments: Phylogenetic analyses of sequences of mitochondrial and nuclear DNA (Lovette et al. 2010) indicate that all species formerly placed in Dendroica, one species formerly placed in Wilsonia (citrina), and two species formerly placed in Parula (americana and pitiayumi) form a clade with the single species traditionally placed in Setophaga (ruticilla). The generic name Setophaga has priority for this clade (AOU 2011).
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G5
Global Status Last Reviewed: 09Apr2016
Global Status Last Changed: 03Dec1996
Ranking Methodology Used: Ranked by inspection
Rounded Global Status: G5 - Secure
Reasons: Still quite common
Nation: United States
National Status: N5B (19Mar1997)
Nation: Canada
National Status: N5B,N5M (29Jan2018)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Alabama (SNRM), Arkansas (SNA), Connecticut (SNA), Delaware (SNA), District of Columbia (S3N), Florida (SNA), Georgia (SNRN), Illinois (SNA), Indiana (SNA), Iowa (S2N), Kansas (SNA), Kentucky (SNA), Louisiana (SNA), Maine (S5B), Maryland (SNA), Massachusetts (S5N), Michigan (S2S3), Minnesota (SNRB), Mississippi (SNA), Missouri (SNA), Nebraska (SNRN), New Hampshire (S4B), New Jersey (SNA), New York (S2B), North Carolina (SNA), North Dakota (SNA), Ohio (SNA), Oklahoma (S2N), Pennsylvania (SNA), Rhode Island (SNA), South Carolina (SNA), South Dakota (SNA), Tennessee (S4N), Texas (S4), Vermont (S2B), Virginia (SNA), West Virginia (SNA), Wisconsin (SNA)
Canada Alberta (S3B), British Columbia (S2B), Labrador (S2B,SUM), Manitoba (S4S5B), New Brunswick (S4B,S4S5M), Newfoundland Island (S2B,SUM), Northwest Territories (S4B), Nova Scotia (S3S4B), Ontario (S5B), Prince Edward Island (S2B), Quebec (S4S5B), Saskatchewan (S4B), Yukon Territory (S2B)

Other Statuses

IUCN Red List Category: LC - Least concern

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent: 200,000 to >2,500,000 square km (about 80,000 to >1,000,000 square miles)
Range Extent Comments: BREEDING: extreme southeastern Yukon and and west-central and southern Mackenzie (Northwest Territtories) east through central Quebec and southern Labrador, south to northeastern British Columbia, central Alberta and Saskatchewan, southern Manitoba, north-central and northeastern Minnesota, northern Michigan, southern Ontario, southern Quebec, northern New York, northern Vermont (rare), northern New Hampshire, and southern Maine; recorded in summer in northern Wisconsin, bred once in Colorado (AOU 1998). NON-BREEDING: Winters in Panama and Colombia, north to Caribbean lowlands of Costa Rica and east to northwestern Venezuela; a common transient through eastern U. S., southeastern Mexico, and central America (AOU 1998). Birdlife International estimates a distribution size of 825,000 square kilometers (2014).

Area of Occupancy: 2,501 to >12,500 4-km2 grid cells
Area of Occupancy Comments: An estimate given population size.

Number of Occurrences: 81 to >300
Number of Occurrences Comments: Species range is extremely large with an estimated global pouplation size of nine million individuals, suggesting at least 81 EOs (Partners in Flight, 2013; Birdlife International, 2014).

Population Size: >1,000,000 individuals
Population Size Comments: Based on Partners in Flight estimate of nine million individuals (2013).

Number of Occurrences with Good Viability/Integrity: Many to very many (41 to >125)
Viability/Integrity Comments: Estimate based on population size

Overall Threat Impact Comments: Large-scale clearcutting of Canadian boreal forests are causing a decrease in available habitat, as well as use of pesticides to control spruce budworm inestations (National Audubon Society, 2014),

Short-term Trend: Increase of >10%
Short-term Trend Comments: Not sampled well in the western half of its breeding range, but Breeding Bird Survey data indicate a significant population decline in eastern North America, averaging 7.1 per cent/year, 1980 through 2000 (Sauer et al. 2001). This represents an overall decline of 77.1 per cent over the 21 year period.. The latest BBS from 1996 - 2012 show 0.43% annual decrease, for a net decrease of 18% over the given time span, a net increase of about 25% (Sauer, et. al. 2014).

Long-term Trend: Decline of 30-50%
Long-term Trend Comments: The latest BBS from 1996 - 2012 show 0.43% annual decrease, for a net decrease of 18% over the given time span (Sauer, et. al. 2014).

Intrinsic Vulnerability: Moderately vulnerable to not intrinsically vulnerable.
Intrinsic Vulnerability Comments: Species numbers increase or decrease in correspondence with spruce-budworm outbreaks (National Audubon Society, 2014).

Environmental Specificity: Moderate. Generalist or community with some key requirements scarce.
Environmental Specificity Comments: Dependent on spruce-budworm outbreaks and the boreal coniferous forests of northern Canada (National Audubon Society, 2014).

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Inventory Needs: Monitor the population level at its wintering grounds, where it is considered vulnerable due to its relatively small wintering area (Venier, Holmes, and Williams, 2011).

Protection Needs: Reduce usage of pesticides to control spruce boudworm infestations (National Audubon Society, 2014). Prime wintering habitat for this species is also prime land for development (Venier, Holmes, and Williams, 2011).

Distribution
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Global Range: (200,000 to >2,500,000 square km (about 80,000 to >1,000,000 square miles)) BREEDING: extreme southeastern Yukon and and west-central and southern Mackenzie (Northwest Territtories) east through central Quebec and southern Labrador, south to northeastern British Columbia, central Alberta and Saskatchewan, southern Manitoba, north-central and northeastern Minnesota, northern Michigan, southern Ontario, southern Quebec, northern New York, northern Vermont (rare), northern New Hampshire, and southern Maine; recorded in summer in northern Wisconsin, bred once in Colorado (AOU 1998). NON-BREEDING: Winters in Panama and Colombia, north to Caribbean lowlands of Costa Rica and east to northwestern Venezuela; a common transient through eastern U. S., southeastern Mexico, and central America (AOU 1998). Birdlife International estimates a distribution size of 825,000 square kilometers (2014).

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map
NOTE: The maps for birds represent the breeding status by state and province. In some jurisdictions, the subnational statuses for common species have not been assessed and the status is shown as not-assessed (SNR). In some jurisdictions, the subnational status refers to the status as a non-breeder; these errors will be corrected in future versions of these maps. A species is not shown in a jurisdiction if it is not known to breed in the jurisdiction or if it occurs only accidentally or casually in the jurisdiction. Thus, the species may occur in a jurisdiction as a seasonal non-breeding resident or as a migratory transient but this will not be indicated on these maps. See other maps on this web site that depict the Western Hemisphere ranges of these species at all seasons of the year.
Endemism: occurs (regularly, as a native taxon) in multiple nations

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AL, AR, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, VA, VT, WI, WV
Canada AB, BC, LB, MB, NB, NF, NS, NT, ON, PE, QC, SK, YT

Range Map
Note: Range depicted for New World only. The scale of the maps may cause narrow coastal ranges or ranges on small islands not to appear. Not all vagrant or small disjunct occurrences are depicted. For migratory birds, some individuals occur outside of the passage migrant range depicted. For information on how to obtain shapefiles of species ranges see our Species Mapping pages at www.natureserve.org/conservation-tools/data-maps-tools.

Range Map Compilers: NatureServe, 2002; WILDSPACETM 2002


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
NY Franklin (36033), Lewis (36049)
VT Essex (50009), Windham (50025)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
01 Upper Connecticut (01080101)+, West (01080107)+, Deerfield (01080203)+
04 Oneida (04140202)+, Raquette (04150305)+, St. Francois River (04150500)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: A small bird (warbler).
Reproduction Comments: Eggs laid mostly in June. Clutch size 3-7 (usually 4-5). Incubation 12-13 days, by female. Young first fly at 11-12 days. (Terres 1980, Harrison 1978). Reproductive output increases when spruce budworm is abundant.
Ecology Comments: In nonbreeding range, often in small groups, rarely territorial, associated with rich food sources.
Non-Migrant: N
Locally Migrant: N
Long Distance Migrant: Y
Mobility and Migration Comments: Most wintering records are from November through April. Arrives in Panama in mass migrational waves in late October via trans-Gulf route; stays until late April (Greenberg 1984). Migration in Costa Rica late September to mid-November and April-early May (Stiles and Skutch 1989). Present in South America October-April (Ridgely and Tudor 1989). Accidental in West Indies during migration.
Palustrine Habitat(s): Riparian
Terrestrial Habitat(s): Forest - Conifer, Forest - Hardwood, Forest - Mixed, Old field, Shrubland/chaparral, Woodland - Conifer, Woodland - Hardwood, Woodland - Mixed
Habitat Comments: Boreal coniferous forest, occasionally adjoining second growth or deciduous scrub. In migration and winter in various forest, woodland, scrub, and thicket habitats. (AOU 1983). Almost anywhere in fall migration (Stiles and Skutch 1989). NON-BREEDING: forest edge, second growth, and lighter woodlands (Pashley 1989, Stiles and Skutch 1989). BREEDING: Nests usually on horizontal branch of tree, generally 1.5-6 m above ground; sometimes nests in shrub or to 15 m in tree.
Adult Food Habits: Frugivore, Invertivore
Immature Food Habits: Frugivore, Invertivore
Food Comments: Eats various small insects obtained in trees, mostly at mid-level; also flycatches and eats small fruits (Terres 1980). In nonbreeding range, foraging strata diverse, behaves as "creeper," diet 20-25% fruit; eats many larvae and much fruit, occasionally nectar (Stiles and Skutch 1989).
Adult Phenology: Diurnal
Immature Phenology: Diurnal
Length: 14 centimeters
Weight: 13 grams
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary
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Biological Research Needs: Many aspects of the biology of this species remain unstudied. Future studies could focus on control and physiology of migration and on metabolism and temperature regulation. Because nests are remote and difficult to find, little is known about mating systems, sex ratio, pair formation, nest selection and building, egg-laying, and reproductive success (except during budworm outbreaks). Song development has not been studied, and little information is available on patterns and repertoire of songs, geographic differences in song, and social context of songs. As with all neotropical migrants, the Bay-breasted Warbler is susceptible to habitat destruction on both its breeding and wintering grounds and should be monitored (Venier, Holmes, and Williams, 2011).
Population/Occurrence Delineation
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Group Name: Passerines

Use Class: Breeding
Subtype(s): Foraging Area, Nest Site, Nesting Colony
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: Evidence of historical breeding, or current and likely recurring breeding, at a given location, minimally a reliable observation of one or more breeding pairs in appropriate habitat. Be cautious about creating EOs for observations that may represent single breeding events outside the normal breeding distribution.

Mapping Guidance: Breeding occurrences include nesting areas as well as foraging areas.

For swallows and other species that have separate nesting and foraging areas, separations are based on nest sites or nesting areas, not to locations of foraging individuals. For example, nesting areas separated by a gap larger than the separation distance are different occurrences, regardless of the foraging locations of individuals from those nesting areas. This separation procedure is appropriate because nesting areas are the critical aspect of swallow breeding occurrences, tend to be relatively stable or at least somwhat predictable in general location, and so are the basis for effective conservation; foraging areas are much more flexible and not necessarily static.

Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Justification: Significant dispersal and associated high potential for gene flow among populations of birds separated by tens of kilometers (e.g., Moore and Dolbeer 1989), and increasing evidence that individuals leave their usual home range to engage in extrapair copulations, as well as long foraging excursions of some species, make it difficult to circumscribe occurrences on the basis of meaningful population units without occurrences becoming too large. Hence, a moderate, standardized separation distance has been adopted for songbirds and flycatchers; it should yield occurrences that are not too spatially expansive while also accounting for the likelihood of gene flow among populations within a few kilometers of each other.

Be careful not to separate a population's nesting areas and foraging areas as different occurrences; include them in the same occurrence even if they are more than 5 km apart. Mean foraging radius (from nesting area) of Brown-headed Cowbird females was 4.0 kilometers in California, 1.2 kilometers in Illinois-Missouri (Thompson 1994). Yellow-headed Blackbirds, Brewer's Blackbirds, and probably Red-winged Blackbirds all forage up to 1.6 kilometers away from breeding colony (Willson 1966, Horn 1968). In one study, Brewer's Blackbirds were found as far as 10 kilometers from nesting area (Williams 1952), but this may be unusual.

For swallows and other parrerines with similar behavioral ecology, separation distance pertains to nest sites or nesting colonies, not to locations of foraging individuals. For example, nesting areas separated by a gap of more than 5 km are different occurrences, regardless of the foraging locations of individuals from those nesting areas. This separation procedure is appropriate because nesting areas are the critical aspect of swallow breeding occurrences, tend to be relatively stable or at least somwhat predictable in general location, and so are the basis for effective conservation; foraging areas are much more flexible and not necessarily static.

Be cautious about creating EOs for observations that may represent single breeding events outside the normal breeding distribution.

Unsuitable habitat: Habitat not normally used for breeding/feeding by a particular species. For example, unsuitable habitat for grassland and shrubland birds includes forest/woodland, urban/suburban, and aquatic habitats. Most habitats would be suitable for birds with versatile foraging habits (e.g., most corvids).

Date: 10Sep2004
Author: Hammerson, G.

Use Class: Migratory stopover
Subtype(s): Foraging Area, Roost Site
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: For most passerines: Evidence of recurring presence of migrating individuals (including historical) and potential recurring presence at a given location; minimally a reliable observation of 25 birds in appropriate habitat.

For swallows: Evidence of recurring presence of migrating flocks (including historical) and potential recurring presence at a given location; minimally a reliable observation of 100 birds in appropriate habitat (e.g., traditional roost sites).

Occurrences should be locations where the species is resident for some time during the appropriate season; it is preferable to have observations documenting presence over at least 7 days annually.

EOs should not be described for species that are nomadic during nonbreeding season: e.g., Lark Bunting.

Be cautious about creating EOs for observations that may represent single events.

Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Justification: Separation distance somewhat arbitrary but intended to define occurrences of managable size for conservation purposes. Occurrences defined primarily on the basis of areas supporting concentrations of birds, rather than on the basis of distinct populations.

For swallows and other species with similar behavioral ecology, the separation distance pertains to communal roost sites rather than to foraging areas; the former tend to be more stable and specific over time than the latter.

Date: 03Sep2004
Author: Hammerson, G., and S. Cannings

Use Class: Nonbreeding
Subtype(s): Foraging Area, Roost Site
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: Any area used traditionally in the nonbreeding season (used for populations that are not resident in a location year-round). Minimally, reliable observations of 10 or more individuals in appropriate habitat for 20 or more days at a time. For G1-G3 species, observations of fewer individuals could constitute an occurrence of conservation value. Sites used during migration should be documented under the 'migratory stopover' location use class.

Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Justification: Separation distance is necessarily arbitrary but attempts to balance the high mobility of birds with the need for occurrences of reasonable spatial scope. Note that a population's roost sites and foraging areas are parts of the same occurrence, even if they are more than 5 km apart.

For swallows and other species with similar behavioral ecology, the separation distance pertains to communal roost sites rather than to foraging areas; the former tend to be more stable and specific over time than the latter.

Date: 03Sep2004
Author: Hammerson, G.

Use Class: Nonmigratory
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: Occurrences are based on evidence of historical presence, or current and likely recurring presence, at a particular location. Such evidence minimally includes collection or reliable observation and documentation of one or more individuals in or near appropriate habitat.

These occurrence specifications are used for nonmigratory populations of passerine birds.

Separation Barriers: None.
Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 5 km
Separation Justification: Significant dispersal and associated high potential for gene flow among populations of birds separated by tens of kilometers (e.g., Moore and Dolbeer 1989), and increasing evidence that individuals leave their usual home range to engage in extrapair copulations, as well as long foraging excursions of some species, make it difficult to circumscribe occurrences on the basis of meaningful population units without occurrences becoming too large. Hence, a moderate, standardized separation distance has been adopted for songbirds and flycatchers; it should yield occurrences that are not too spatially expansive while also accounting for the likelihood of gene flow among populations within a few kilometers of each other.

Be careful not to separate a population's nesting areas and breeding-season foraging areas as different occurrences; include them in the same occurrence even if they are more than 5 km apart. Blue jays have small summer home ranges but fly up to 4 kilometers to harvest mast (Tarvin and Woolfenden 1999). Flocks of pinyon jays range over 21-29 square kilometers (Ligon 1971, Balda and Bateman 1971); nesting and foraging areas may be widely separated. Tricolored blackbirds forage in flocks that range widely to more than 15 kilometers from the nesting colony (Beedy and Hamilton 1999).

Unsuitable habitat: Habitat not normally used for breeding/feeding by a particular species. For example, unsuitable habitat for grassland and shrubland birds includes forest/woodland, urban/suburban, and aquatic habitats. Most habitats would be suitable for birds with versatile foraging habits (e.g., most corvids).

Date: 10Sep2004
Author: Hammerson, G.
Notes: These specs pertain to nonmigratory species.
Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
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Authors/Contributors
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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 18Nov2014
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Jue, Dean K.
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 21Mar1994
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): HAMMERSON, G.

Zoological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
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    doi:10.2173/bna.206


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  • Moore, W. S., and R. A. Dolbeer. 1989. The use of banding recovery data to estimate dispersal rates and gene flow in avian species: case studies in the Red-winged Blackbird and Common Grackle. Condor 91:242-253.

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