Willow Flycatcher - Photo Copyright Ward Cameron 2003 - Click to view a larger image Willow Flycatcher - Photo Copyright Ward Cameron 2003 - Click to view a larger image Willow Flycatcher - Photo Copyright Ward Cameron 2003 - Click to view a larger image Willow Flycatcher - Photo Copyright Ward Cameron 2003 - Click to view a larger image  
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Willow Flycatcher
Empidonax traillii

Flycatchers
Flycatcher Family (Tyrannidae)

Size: Length: 14 cm (5.5 in) Wingspan: 20-23 cm (8-9 in)

Description: Once known as Traill's flycatcher, the species was split into two, the alder and the willow. The willow flycatcher is the more southern of the two. Look for an olive-green to gray flycatcher with a light patch under the throat and a light belly. There may be two wing bars visible.

Similar Species: The willow flycatcher is visually identical to the alder flycatcher . The only way to differentiate them in the field is through their song. The alder's call is more buzzing, "phee-be" while the willow flycatcher is more musical "fee-bee-o" or a single note "fritz".

Range: This is the southern version of the former Traill's flycatcher. In the U.S. Rockies, it is the predominant of the two. The willow flycatcher range extends northward into the south-western part of the Canadian Rockies though, so you may have a challenge differentiating it from the alder in those locales.

Habitat: Like the alder, the willow flycatcher likes wet sites along rivers, marshes, swamps, and bogs. They like to perch atop a tall snag from which they will dart out after flying insects.

Diet: They catch insects on the wing. Often leaving a favourite perch to catch a few insects, and then returning to the same spot.

Nesting: The nest is a small cup made of plant fibres, grass, shredded bark or plant stems, plant cotton and other fluff. It is well lined with soft materials, and the female lays 3-4 white to buff lightly marked (often unmarked) eggs. Incubation lasts 12 days after which the altricial nestlings hatch. They will be tended by both parents until they fledge at 13-16 days.

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All Material Ward Cameron 2005

 

 

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