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Great-crested Flycatcher

Great-crested Flycatcher
Myiarchus crinitus
Order - Passeriformes; Family -Tyrannidae

This flycatcher is not as easy to observe as some of its relatives because it spends most of its time in treetops. A medium-sized brown bird with a feathery crest, it has a grey throat and breast, bright yellow undersides and a reddish tail.

During the warm seasons , Great-crested Flycatchers can be found in forests of the eastern US and southern Canada. They feed on flying insects and other invertebrates, and nest in tree cavities. The nests are made of a mixture of materials, often including snakeskin.

In the fall they migrate to the Gulf coast, Cuba, Mexico, Central America and northern South America . The smaller Acadian Flycatcher is a more numerous and common species in Northern Virginia, It is greenish-feathered and does not have a crest on its head, but is more active lower down in the forest canopy, so is more likely to be seen.


Photos © Tony Coomer, Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge, Woodbridge, Virginia