Bird Identification – Black And White Creeping Warbler

You may possibly mistake this little warbler for a downy woodpecker when first you see him creeping rapidly over the bark of trees, or hanging from the under side of the branches. But when he flits restlessly from twig to twig and from tree to tree without taking time to examine spots thoroughly; especially when he calls a few thin wiry notes—zee-zee-zee-zee—you may know he is no woodpecker, but a warbler. Woodpeckers have thick set, high shouldered bodies which they flatten against the tree trunks; the males wear red in their caps, and all have larger, stouter bills than the warbler’s. Moreover, no woodpecker is so small as this streaked and speckled little creature who is usually too intent on feeding to utter a single zee. You could not possibly confuse him with the diligent, placid brown creeper or with the slate-blue nuthatch which also creeps along the branches on the under or upper side. Some children I know call this black and white warbler the little zebra bird. Would that all warblers were so easily identified!