Cerulean Warbler (Dendroica cerulea)

Audubon North Carolina – Cerulean warbler
Cerulean Warblers are a species of high conservation concern because of their small total population size and significant declines. Audubon North Carolina is working to protect and manage conservation efforts within 19 Important Bird Areas (IBA) in the mountain region. These IBAs have been identified because they offer support to migratory land birds with food and habitat as they nest and raise their babies.

Birds of North Carolina – Cerulean warbler (Carolina Bird Club)
The Cerulean warbler breeds at scattered small colonies along the Blue Ridge Escarpment, formerly in Wilkes, but now from Ashe to Rutherford (Chimney Rock Park) and Polk; additional areas include the Bull Mountain area northeast of Asheville, Yellow Creek Mountains near Fontana Village in Graham, and various scattered sites in Macon and surrounding counties. The species is best found by stopping at several overlooks on the Blue Ridge Parkway northeast of Asheville, between Craven Gap and Bull Creek Overlook from the end of Apr into early June.

Audubon Guide to North American Birds – Cerulean Warbler
Surveys show strongly declining numbers of this bird in recent years. Nesting efforts may fail because of increasing cowbird prarsitism in smaller patches of forest. It may also be losing wintering habitat in tropics.

All About Birds – Cerulean Warbler (Cornell Lab of Ornithology)
Cerulean Warblers forage at the top of the canopy, often 50 feet above the ground, which means you’ll have to do a bit of neck craning to see them. Brushing up on your tree ID might help you spot them, as they often use white oaks, cucumber magnolias, bitternut hickories, and sugar maples more than other species.