We just love flycatchers

To See all of my new Flycatchers click HERE

Until the current “lock down” on movements the flycatcher that we had seen most of in most locations is the Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (Polioptila caerulea). This one was an early start for us with Tyrant Flycatchers in Florida.

Blue gray Gnatcatcher Polioptila caerulea Circle B Bar Preserve FL

To see my Blue-gray Gnatcatcher Gallery please click HERE

The first time we saw a Vermilion Flycatcher (Pyrocephalus rubinus) was during our first visit to Patagonia Lake State Park, (which is one of our absolute favourite parks and campgrounds). It was a single sighting on the birding trail.

Our first sighting of a male Vermilion Flycatcher

Since then, being a little later in our tour of the south in Texas and Arizona this year we are seeing more. It paid off to be a couple of weeks later this year as we had a good set of flycatchers in Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge, Texas.

Two males at Santa Ana

But when we arrived in Patagonia Lake State Park the flycatchers had not arrived yet, but thankfully they did before we left! I now also benefit from using a cropped sensor Nikon D500 body that gives me 50% more magnification over the D4s – so I can “get closer” to the birds, or at least appear to.

Male at Patagonia Lake State Park AZ

We also saw female Vermilion Flycatchers and discovered that a lot of people, including us, first see them and believe they are Say’s Phoebes. There is great similarity.

Female Vermilion Flycatcher

This year, as we are still in Southern Arizona, we see more of the Vermilions. It is a little strange at first, having seen them in wildlife preserves in Texas and Arizona (i.e. places you go to see them), to see them in pairs in trees in large parking lots!

To see my Vermilion Flycatcher gallery please click HERE

To compare the female with the Say’s Phoebe please click HERE

We also love the variety of Phoebes that we see and stand and watch them on their perch. They flit off, catch and consume the fly, then return to the perch, then repeat.

Black Phoebe Sayornis nigricans Whitewater Draw AZ

To see my Black Phoebe gallery please click HERE

Eastern Phoebe Sayornis phoebe Santa Anna National Wildlife ReserveTX

But one of the big surprises is the Great Kiskadee (Pitangus sulphuratus) that we see in Texas. It is so large, seems too large to live on flies! It is 60% longer than a Vermilion and 400% the weight.

Great Kiskadee Rio Grande Valley TX

To see my Great Kiskadee gallery please click HERE

Gear: Nikon D500, Nikon MB-D17, Nikon Z 6 mirrorless, Nikon FTZ, Nikon 600.0 mm f/4.0 VRII, Nikkor TC-17 EII, Nikon 80.-400.0 mm f/4.5-5.6 VRIII, Nikkor TC-14 EII, Really Right Stuff tripod and full gimbal head, Sony digital film.

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2 Responses to We just love flycatchers

  1. Joyce Barbour says:

    Great photos of the flycatcher. Hope you are safe and healthy!

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