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Pine Warbler: Cole’s Bird of the Month for June

Pine Warbler

Nature packs quite a punch in the Pine Warbler. This feisty little bird has no problem standing up for itself. Whether it’s a bright yellow male staking out his claim to territory or a more subdued yellowish female calling out sharp short calls to declare this is her “stomping grounds”, this warbler will not be deterred. In fact, Pine Warblers are daring enough to get up close and personal with people. Just watch this video showing a couple of them willing to venture onto a human hand in order to snatch up a few live mealworms.

As the name suggests, the Pine Warbler generally hangs out in pine trees. They fly high in the tops of deciduous forests of the eastern United States, where they usually find everything they need. They enjoy snacking on pine more than any other seed, and they are the only warbler that will eat large quantities of seeds. For that reason, it is possible for you to see them at your feeders. In the winter, you can lure them with sunflower seeds, suet, mealworms, and yes, even peanut butter. Elaine Cole has the most success attracting these cute little birds with a home-made blend of Cole’s Suet Kibbles and Dried mealworms offered in a Mighty Mesh feeder. She finds their number two choice for a meal is Cole’s Hot Meats suet cakes.

When trying to identify the Pine Warbler, it is very easy to confuse with the more brightly colored Yellow Warbler. To tell the difference and spot the Pine Warbler, the distinguishing characteristics for both males and females are the white bars on the wings, thicker bill, and a stockier appearance. In color, the Pine Warbler has what looks like a coating of olive on the top of its head muting his otherwise striking yellow feathers.


Pine Warblers live year round in the southeastern United States. During the summers, Pine Warblers will nest atop or near the tops of pine trees and feast on all types of bugs in addition to pine seeds. In the fall when they migrate, Pine Warblers will form large flocks of 50 – 100 birds mingling with their friends who live year round in the southeast. Imagine seeing all those beautiful birds in one place!

Pine Warblers have an interesting song and learning their distinguishing call is one of your best tools to locating these elusive birds that can hide so well in the trees. Click on the video link below to hear the song. Be patient. It sings at about 16 seconds into the video.

These high flying daring little birds are making a comeback in the United States. Back in the 1950’s the herbicide DDT used to control Dutch Elm disease, killed many Pine Warblers. In addition, much of their native forests were changed or destroyed because of development and logging. Fortunately, in recent years extensive reforestation projects have led to an increase in the Pine Warbler population.

The Pine Warbler is a brave, colorful, and elusive little bird that can feel right at home flying in the tops of trees or grabbing seeds from your feeder or even worms from your hand. If you have photos of Pine Warblers, please share them with the Cole’s online community on Facebook. We’d love to see them.

Cole’s Wild Bird Products is a family-owned company that distributes wild bird feed and suet products. The company is known for offering the highest quality products on the market. Cole’s also specializes in chile infused seed products designed to make your feeder a bird’s only “hot” spot. Cole’s started in the garage of mom and pop entrepreneurs Richard and Nancy Cole back in the early 1980’s. Today it distributes to retailers nationwide. Cole’s is located in the metro Atlanta area. For more information, visit www.ColesWildBird.com.

Yellow-rumped Warbler: Cole’s February Bird of the Month

Yellow-rumped Warbler: Cole’s February Bird of the Month

The Yellow-rumped Warbler is among the most bright and colorful of all the birds you will see at your feeder. In the winter, you’ll recognize them as fairly large warblers with a subdued color palette of yellow and brown. But watch out for the spring makeover when Yellow-rumped Warblers display a striking bright yellow against charcoal gray and black with some bold white thrown in for effect. The yellow for which they are named is on the face, sides, and of course the rump. “Butter butts,” as they are known to some, are very active throughout North America during the summer.

The Yellow-rumped Warbler feasts on a steady diet of bugs and spiders in the spring and summer. Insects have no place to hide with these birds. They will pull them out of spider webs, scoop them off the surface of rivers and oceans, pick insects out of seaweed on the beach and even catch them in mid-flight.  During the cold winters when there aren’t as many insects around, they eat berries. In fact, they are the only type of warbler that can digest the waxes found in bayberries and wax myrtles.

During the mating season, the female builds the nest and the male helps out by bringing her material. The couple will have one to two broods during a season then move on to the southeastern United States and South America for the winter.

If you want to attract Yellow-rumped Warblers to your feeder, try Cole’s Nutberry Suet Blend, Special Feeder, or Dried Mealworms. Since they are also greatly attracted to suet, a generous offering of Cole’s Suet Kibbles and Hot Meats suet cakes are guaranteed to get these beautiful little birds’ attention.

The Yellow-rumped Warbler has an upbeat song, and you can hear it by clicking on the video below.

Thanks to our Cole’s Facebook fan Jeremy Bock for nominating the Yellow-rumped Warbler as our Bird of the Month for February. Do you have photos of Yellow-rumped Warblers? If so, please share them with our Facebook community. Join the conversation on ColesFacebookPage

Cole’s Wild Bird Products is a family-owned company that distributes wild bird feed and suet products. The company is known for offering the highest quality products on the market. Cole’s also specializes in chile infused seed products designed to make your feeder a bird’s only “hot” spot. Cole’s started in the garage of mom and pop entrepreneurs Richard and Nancy Cole back in the early 1980’s. Today it distributes to retailers nationwide. Cole’s is located in the metro Atlanta area. For more information, visit www.ColesWildBird.com.

Awe, What A Cute Window Shopper!

Imagine seeing this adorable little customer looking in your store window. That’s what happened to long time employee Karen Theodorou as she was closing up shop at the Birdwatcher Supply Store in Buford, one of the retail outlets for Cole’s Wild Bird Products. Karen says she had just closed out the register around 6:30 on July 13th and was headed for the door when she looked up and saw what appeared to be a curious pooch. She looked closer and realized it was actually a little fawn all alone at the door. Karen sat all her things down and grabbed her cell phone to take a picture. “He couldn’t see me because of the reflective glass. So, I snapped a few photos,” Karen said.

The store is located in front of a large forested wetlands area. So, employees are used to seeing wildlife such as deer, rabbits, and hawks behind the store. Karen assumed this little fawn came from the back and had wandered to the front of the store, where it could run into potential danger. “He was right in front of a busy shopping area, and the street isn’t far away. So, I wanted to make sure he would head in the right direction, back to the woods and his mother. He saw the reflection in the glass and hit the store window. I went outside, and he ran toward the store next door and fell on the wet sidewalk. But, he got up quickly. I followed him to make sure he headed in the correct direction, back to the woods,” said Karen.

As soon as Karen got home, she went straight for Google to find out why this little fawn might be without his mom. She found out that fawns are commonly seen away from their moms. There’s a very good reason for that. It’s nature’s way of keeping the fawns safe from predators. It seems the fawns don’t have a strong scent, but their mothers do. So initially, mom stays with the fawn just enough so that it can nurse. By one month old, the fawn begins foraging for food and by three months old, it is weened. If you’d like to read more about fawns, please check out the article below.

Wild fawns aren’t adoptable!

Here’s a photo of Karen Theodorou as she is banding hummingbirds. She describes herself as “a nature nut”. Thanks, Karen! Please share this story with friends. And, join Cole’s on Facebook.

Coles Wild Bird Products


Karen Theodorou



The Rufous Hummingbird: Cole’s Bird of the Month for August

The Rufous hummingbird packs quite a punch in its little body. It’s known for having a feisty nature and a brave determination to protect favorite feeders and flowers.  Rufous hummingbirds will chase away much larger hummingbirds and even chipmunks and other small animals.

The male Rufous has bright orange on his back and belly, as well as a stunning red coat, making him easy to spot and identify. The female Rufous is green with a mostly white neck. A bright orange spot on her throat is the female’s most distinguishing feature. Both males and females move in a dart-like fashion with precise maneuverability.

In addition to a feisty nature, Rufous hummingbirds are also known for their stamina. They have the longest migration, as measured by body size, of any bird in the world! They travel almost four thousand miles making the one way trek from Alaska to Mexico. In case you’re wondering, that equates to more than 78 million body lengths for the three inch hummer. It’s closest competitor, the 13-inch-long Arctic Tern’s one-way flight of almost twelve thousand miles, is a little more than 50 million body lengths.

The Rufous breeds farther north than any other hummingbird in the United States, traveling all the way up to Alaska in the summer. For a little rest and relaxation they then head down to sunny Mexico for fall and winter. Many people along the Pacific Northwest look forward to seeing the Rufous as these mighty little birds make the long migration up and down the western United States.

Additionally, they have a great sense for location, which comes in handy when looking for food on a daily basis. They can remember exactly where a specific feeder was a year ago, even if it has been moved. The typical habitats for these birds are open areas, such as yards, parks, and forests.

Along with visiting feeders, Rufous hummingbirds enjoy feasting on colorful tubular flowers, such as scarlet gilia, mints, lilies, fireweeds, currants, and heaths. To get the protein they need to survive, they eat insects like gnats, midges, and flies. They’ll live in gardens for a while, but move on fairly quickly after one or two weeks. To take good care of these amazing birds, you should make sugar water mixtures on a one to four mixture (one cup of sugar for four cups of water). Be sure to do away with the sugar water if it becomes cloudy or the feeder fills with insects because the spoiled nectar can ferment producing a toxic alcohol.

If you hear a hard ticking sound or a clicking tik or chik that is doubled like ch-tik or ch-ti-tik, there is a Rufous nearby. The adult male will also make a buzzing sound with its wings to draw attention to itself. They make a ch-ch-ch-ch-chi sound, which is very similar to a stutter. Interestingly, immature males do not make any noise or typical sounds at all while they are diving.

When it comes to tough little birds, with lots of aggression and a will to fight for food, you can’t beat the Rufous hummingbird. If you want to see a female Rufous fiercely defending her feeder with everything she has including her quick moves, fanned out tail feathers and quirky sounds – just click on this video and stand back!