Living Bird Magazine
Acadian FlycatcherEmpidonax virescens
- ORDER: Passeriformes
- FAMILY: Tyrannidae
A denizen of mature deciduous forests and streamsides, the Acadian Flycatcher is usually first noticed by its explosive "peet-sah" call. It is the largest and greenest of the North American Empidonax.More ID Info
- Mosquero Verdoso (Spanish)
- Moucherolle vert (French)
- Cool Facts
- Curiously, no information exists on the ability of the Acadian Flycatcher to walk or hop. It is an excellent flier, though, extremely maneuverable and able to hover and even fly backward. It has been observed bathing not by standing in water, but rather by diving into water from above, hitting the water with its chest, and then returning to a perch to preen and shake.
- The male defends his territory with a characteristic "peet-sah" song. The female may use the same call in stressful situations, such as when disturbed from the nest or right after being released from a mist net.
- The Acadian Flycatcher is a common host to the brood-parasitic Brown-headed Cowbird, which lays its eggs in other birds' nests. Nests are parasitized more in small woodlots than in large tracts of forest. The frequency of parasitism is lower for the flycatcher than for other bird species in the same forests. From the cowbird's perspective the Acadian Flycatcher does not seem to be a particularly good host: only 16% of cowbird young in Acadian Flycatcher nests fledged successfully.
- The oldest Acadian Flycatcher was over 12 years old, when it was recaptured and rereleased during a banding operation in Louisiana.