Geothlypis Formosa – Kentucky Warblers

Geothlypis Formosa - Kentucky Warblers found in the US

Kentucky warblers (Geothlypis formosa) are a small New World warbler species. It is a lethargic and heavy warbler with a short tail that prefers to stay on or near the ground most of the time, except when singing.

Quick Overview: Geothlypis Formosa – Kentucky Warblers
Body size: Around 5.25 in (13 cm) and a weight of 14 g (0.5 oz)
Main colors: Olive-Green, Yellow, Pink
Range: Southeast United States
Migratory Bird: Yes
Best time of the year to see in the U.S.: June, July, August, September
Conservation Status: Least Concern

Kentucky Warblers Description

The warbler is a medium-sized ground-dweller with brilliant olive-green upperparts and yellow underparts. The head features a black mask, sideburns, and prominent yellow brows. The bill is dark, while the legs and feet are pink.

Geothlypis Formosa - Kentucky Warblers found in the US
Geothlypis Formosa – Kentucky Warblers. Photo by: Kevin Faccenda


These birds have a length of 5.25 in (13 cm) and a weight of 14 g (0.5 oz). Their wings could range from 8.25 in (21 cm).


Primarily insects. Feeds on a variety of insects, including moths, bugs, ants, grasshoppers, beetles, caterpillars, aphids, and grubs; also, spiders and a few berries are consumed.


The Kentucky Warbler breeds in dense, deciduous forests in the eastern United States, with populations being denser and more widespread west of the Appalachians. This skulking species prefers deep understory vegetation, typically near bodies of water such as creeks, rivers, and swamps.


This warbler is a skulking, ground-nesting bird that is more frequently heard than seen. In early spring, the male sings ceaselessly, sometimes partially covered and nearly motionless save for his vibrating throat, for 5–15 minutes at a time from the same perch, often at a height of 5–15 meters.

Geothlypis Formosa Scientific Classification

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Class: Aves
  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Parulidae
  • Genus: Geothlypis
  • Species: Geothlypis formosa

Best time of the year to see

The best time to see these birds in the United States is during the summer season (June – September).

Distribution of the Kentucky Warblers in the USA

Breeds in southern Iowa and eastern Kansas all the way to New Jersey and in the south all the way to Georgia. Winters in the tropics, ranging from central Mexico to the Yucatan Peninsula. It has been recorded further west during migration.

The Kentucky Warblers can be found in the following states in the United States – Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

Geothlypis Formosa – Kentucky Warblers

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The maximum upload file size: 15 MB. You can upload: image. Drop file here

Scroll to top