Bird of the week 2023 | Week 5
Prothonotary warbler [MichaelWarren.com]
Richard Nixon’s ascent to the presidency was in some small measure due to this stunning yellow bird. The rare(ish) prothonotary warbler is named for the yellow robes worn by papal clerks, called prothonotaries. During the 1950 perjury trial of communist spy Alger Hiss, Nixon corroborated a government witness by getting Hiss to brag about spotting a prothonotary warbler near the Potomac River. That trial put Nixon on the road to the White House. Prothonotary warblers visit Marion County between March and October. A great place to see them during that time is to kayak the Silver River, where they can sometimes be seen singing along the water’s edge.