Occurrence Maps

White-eyed Vireo

Click to view larger size

White-eyed Vireo is a rather secretive vireo with a loud, explosive song. Along with Blue-headed Vireo, it is a fairly short-distance migrant. Blue-headed and White-eyed Vireo are the only vireos that regularly occur in winter in the southeastern United States.

White-eyed Vireo is very common in the Southeast in summer. The northeastern extension of its range is along coastal southern New England, including coastal Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Bristol County, Massachusetts, which shows up on the above map only when detectability peaks in spring and again in early fall. It migrates early in spring, arriving back in the mid-Atlantic by mid-April, and reaches its most northerly areas by late April. As with many early migrants (such as sparrows, Eastern Phoebes, Pine Warblers, and Blue-headed Vireos), it also stays rather late, with birds lingering well into October. This is a typical migration timing for hardier species and shorter-distance migrants.

On the breeding map you can see that the species mostly stays away from the more northerly and high elevation areas, including the Appalachian mountains where the mountain forests have a northern flavor. On the wintering grounds, you can almost see when the birds start singing again (and thus, become more detectable which results in higher predicted occurrence) in preparation for their northward migration to establish territories. Look at how Texas and Florida seem to brighten in late winter (starting in February) and how migration begins just a month later.