Vireo, Vireo huttoni
The Hutton's Vireo, a year-round resident of woodlands, especially live oaks, in low-
lying areas throughout the western states. It has a remarkably close resemblance to
the (unrelated) Ruby-crowned Kinglet, a common wintering bird in most of the vireo's
year-round habitat. The vireo differs in having a larger bill with a slight hook at the end
(see above), and pale lores that create the effect of spectacles rather than an eye-ring;
it also lacks the kinglet's black feathering below the second wingbar.
A cute little songbird looked at from another perspective is a terrifying bird of prey. Above, the bird has an insect pinned to the
branch with a talon; below it is in his bill, ready to be swallowed.
Hutton's are the only vireos that winter in the Bay Area; they have already started singing in January, and I located this bird and then photographed him after hearing his song. The song has been accurately if unsympathetically described as a "monotonous and unmusical series of nasal and wheezy" sounds, sometimes single-note, sometimes ascending or descending (BNA Online).