Red Warbler Cardellina rubra

  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Parulidae
  • Polytypic: 3 subspecies
  • Authors: Andrew Dreelin


Nest construction begins in mid-March; only the female builds the nest, although the male accompanies the female continuously during this period (Elliot 1969). Nests with eggs are reported from March to May (Elliot 1965, Rowley 1966, Mayfield 1968, Elliott 1969), and with nestlings as late as the end of June (Haemig 1977).

Nests can be either cup or oven-shaped and are placed on the ground upon a mat of moss and lichen, often concealed by foliage. They are mainly composed of grass and stems or pine needles, but other plant matter, like bark and dead deciduous leaves, can be present too (Rowley 1966, Mayfield 1968, Elliott 1969, Haemig 1976). Mean nest cup measurements for open nests were 5 x 5 cm, while oven-nest interiors were 6.5 x 7.2 cm (Elliott 1969).

The eggs are a faint glossy white with tiny, cinnamon spots concentrated on the larger end of the egg. Clutch size is usually three, but can be four (Elliott 1969).

Only the female incubates, and hatching occurs in about 16 days after incubation begins. Fledging happens 10-11 days later, and the young are fully grown three weeks after fledging (Elliott 1969).

Recommended Citation

Dreelin, A. (2014). Red Warbler (Cardellina rubra), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.