vermivora (from vermis, worm, and vorare, to devour) pinus (pine trees)
Friday, May 11, 1984 — 5:35 pm
Elk Grove Village, Illinois — Busse Woods
This forest preserve was only a few miles from work on Tollview Drive and about seven miles from home. I used to go over on lunch once in a while, or for a few minutes after work. I also went here sometimes from home when I didn’t have the time or inclination to fight traffic any further. It is a rather grungy place, muddy, littered and not very scenic, but it was usually productive for common woodland birds. (It also had the occasional treat, like Great Horned Owl, Pileated Woodpecker or Common Moorhen.) It was also very productive on those occasions when I wanted to collect spider webs with my face.
I found this beautiful Blue-winged Warbler foraging rapidly through the small trees in the understory of tall mature woods, staying approximately ten feet off the ground. I was very excited when I saw it. It isn’t uncommon in Northern Illinois, and even breeds here, but I had never seen one. Until now.