Birda Logo
A photo of a Palm Warbler (Setophaga palmarum), male
Palm Warbler, Male

Palm Warbler

Setophaga palmarum

The Palm Warbler, Setophaga palmarum, is a diminutive songbird belonging to the New World warbler family. It presents itself in two distinct plumages depending on the season. During the breeding season, the "Brown" Palm Warbler dons a breeding plumage, while the "Yellow" Palm Warbler is observed in a non-breeding plumage outside of this period.

Identification Tips

Adult Palm Warblers measure between 4.7–5.5 inches in length, with a wingspan stretching from 7.9–8.3 inches, and weigh a mere 0.3–0.5 ounces. The species is divided into two subspecies: the "Yellow" or "eastern" Palm Warbler (S. p. hypochrysea) and the "Brown" or "western" Palm Warbler (S. p. palmarum). The eastern variant is characterized by brownish-olive upper parts and a vibrant yellow underbelly, with bold rufous streaking across the breast and flanks. In contrast, the western subspecies exhibits less yellow below, more subdued streaking, and upper parts of a cold grayish-brown hue.


Palm Warblers are typically found in open coniferous bogs and at the edges of forests, preferring areas east of the Continental Divide across Canada and the northeastern United States.


These birds are migratory, wintering in the southeastern United States, the YucatΓ‘n Peninsula, Caribbean islands, and from eastern Nicaragua down to Panama. They are among the first warblers to return to their breeding grounds in spring, often arriving nearly two months ahead of their congeners.


Palm Warblers are ground foragers, more so than other warblers, occasionally taking flight to catch insects. They are known for their distinctive tail bobbing, a behavior shared only with Kirtland's and Prairie Warblers within the Setophaga genus.

Song & Calls

The Palm Warbler's song is a monotonous buzzy trill, while its call is a sharp "chek."


The breeding nests of Palm Warblers are open cups, typically positioned on or near the ground in open areas.

Diet and Feeding

Their diet consists mainly of insects and berries, which they forage for predominantly on the ground.

Conservation status

The Palm Warbler is currently listed as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List, indicating a stable population across its range.

App logo
Birda is a birdwatching app and community aimed at curious people who want to deepen their connection with nature.

Palm Warblers on Birda


More New World Warblers

Birda Logo

Your birdwatching journey like never before

Connect with nature in minutes
Take a walk, look out of the window and log the birds that you see. Feel good about those little connections to nature.
Discover the joy of birding
Find new birding spots, see more birds, share and celebrate with a like-minded community of nature lovers.
Play your part in saving nature
Logging your birding sightings and sessions turns into positive action for our planet. Every sighting counts.

Birda Blog

What Our Birders Say
Fantastic app - Love it!
Love this app and have used it almost daily. Lots of species information and easy to use. Love seeing birds spotted by other users in the UK and worldwide.
Amylia S
Best app for any birding person!
I love this app!! I am so addicted to it when I saw it had 3 star review I was so sad! The app is awesome!! The best app for any birding person! ❀️
Recommend for any bird watcher
Very wholesome app: I joined this app with a new interest in watching birds to help me find out what I was spotting. The community is very active in helping identify birds which is great and everyone is very kind so it’s just a nice wholesome community. I would definitely recommend this for any bird spotter πŸ˜ƒ
David C
Very knowledgeable group
Nice friendly birding community. Very knowledgeable group with a willingness to help.
Patricia L
Very encouraging birding app
Easy to use, fun to see progress and encouraging to receive feedback from other users.
Jane N
A great app
Enjoying it immensely and finding it useful too. Recording the different birds and counting them is showing me how the present climate is affecting them all. I've trebled the numbers by planting native hedging. A great app.
Such a great app!
I didn’t think I could enjoy birding more but this app makes it so much better. Some great features and a really great way to share your sightings with your friends or fellow birders nearby or around the world! ❀️
Stewart W
Fantastic to be involved
Fantastic to be involved, great for mental health and gets you responding with the Challenges that are to takd part in.
Makes you want to spot birds more
I think this app is fun. It makes you want to spot birds more so I guess in a way it encourages you to get out and about instead of sitting in front of the TV.
Great app for beginner twitchers
I’ve had a passion of photographing birds for a long time now but have only just gotten into proper birdwatching, and this app is brilliant for those just getting started. There is a great sense of community among users and the app is very easy to use and professional. Awesome app altogether
As featured in
Connect with nature,
Find your flock
Download Birda - QR Code
Β© 2024 All rights reserved