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Arizona Flycatcher Again... (1 Viewer)

Photgog

Rufous-Female
NE of Phoenix, Jan 21,11... Granite Reef Dam area.

A little better photography this time... Gray Flycatcher???

Fraser
 

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It appears to have the eye ring and wingbars for a Gray, but others could have that too. Was it wagging its tail really slowly?
 
It appears to have the eye ring and wingbars for a Gray, but others could have that too. Was it wagging its tail really slowly?

Gray's have a downward tail wag, a la Phoebe. I wouldn't characterize it as 'really slowly.' More deliberate than the nervous flicking behaviour of some other Empids though, most of which are upward.

Any other photo's? Plumage looks good for gray but bill looks thin, with a dark cast along much of the lower mandible.
 
Another couple of shots... and the first two repeated.

I don't have an agenda that this be a Gray... My agenda is to be accurate in the identification.

Fraser
 

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Let me say first, I've never seen a gray flycatcher before, but going by my Sibley's and National Geographic, it certainly looks like one. I guess I would ask what the other posters think it is if it's not a Gray? A Wood-pewee should have smudges on the undertail coverts and this bird doesn't have that. Also the head seems more rounded than a pewee. the bill is too long for and eye-rings too light for Dusky or Least.
 
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Let me say first, I've never seen a gray flycatcher before, but going by my Sibley's and National Geographic, it certainly looks like one. I guess I would ask what the other posters think it is if it's not a Gray? A Wood-pewee should have smudges on the undertail coverts and this bird doesn't have that. Also the head seems more rounded than a pewee. the bill is too long for and eye-rings too light for Dusky or Least.

The most plausible alternative to Gray is Willow.
 
The most plausible alternative to Gray is Willow.

Thanks, fugl. Yes, I can see it would be. However, the willow seems to have a sloping, flatish forehead and a white chin and throat. I see a round head on this bird.
Edit: Well, that that I look again after typing, I see Photogog's bird does have a whiter chin than I thought.
 
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Actually, now I'm looking at the National Geographic again, and it looks very different to the Sibley's which is what I had in hand as I wrote. The NG has fairly large white lores on the Gray--almost a white face-- and a fairly large white post-occular area of the eye-ring. Hardly looks like the same bird as Sibley's;) Overall, I still think it looks like the Gray.
Sue
 
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I agree with Gray Flycatcher.

I guess I would ask what the other posters think it is if it's not a Gray?

Gray is the most likely empid in central AZ in winter. Dusky and Hammond's are regular in southern AZ though, so they should be considered. Wood-pewee or other empids (with exception of Pacific-slope, for which there are a few records on eBird) would be almost unheard of at this time of year (not that the subject bird resembles a Wood-pewee anyway).

I believe James was trying to eliminate Dusky with his request for more photos. The additional photos show an almost all light lower mandible, which pretty much eliminates Dusky.

Best,
Jim
 
I agree with Gray Flycatcher.



Gray is the most likely empid in central AZ in winter. Dusky and Hammond's are regular in southern AZ though, so they should be considered. Wood-pewee or other empids (with exception of Pacific-slope, for which there are a few records on eBird) would be almost unheard of at this time of year (not that the subject bird resembles a Wood-pewee anyway).

I believe James was trying to eliminate Dusky with his request for more photos. The additional photos show an almost all light lower mandible, which pretty much eliminates Dusky.

Best,
Jim

Hi Jim,
"I guess I would ask what the other posters think it is if it's not a Gray?"

What I meant was I didn't see a better candidate and I wondered what I might be missing. I often have a hard time with flycatchers. I threw the pewee out mainly because of bill length and the fact that sometimes people confuse them with Willows (and others?). I should have paid attention to range and time of year though. Thanks for clarifying things.
Sue
 
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The additional photos show an almost all light lower mandible, which pretty much eliminates Dusky.

Hi Jim,

It is not too uncommon to see Dusky Flycatchers with nearly all pale mandibles, though they are never as brightly colored as those of Western Flycatchers. There is usually also a bit of duskiness to the tip and cutting edge.

Chris
 
Hi Jim,

It is not too uncommon to see Dusky Flycatchers with nearly all pale mandibles, though they are never as brightly colored as those of Western Flycatchers. There is usually also a bit of duskiness to the tip and cutting edge.

Chris

Ok. Think what I meant was it pretty much eliminates the basis for doubting that it is a Gray.
 
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