Western Wood-Pewee

Contopus sordidulus

Order

PASSERIFORMES

Family

Tyrant Flycatchers (Tyrannidae)

Code 4

WEWP

Code 6

CONSOR

ITIS

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ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The Western Wood-Pewee is a small flycatcher that looks much like the Eastern Wood-Pewee; these two species were once considered to be the same bird. Preferred breeding sights are found in open wooded areas throughout western North America. During the winter months, this species will migrate to central South America for warmer climates. Nests are built in tree cavities or are cup-shaped and placed on horizontal tree branches in the forest, especially California black oak forests. Diets consist mainly of insects, which are gleaned from surrounding vegetation or caught in-flight. The conservation rating for the Western Wood-Pewee is Least Concern.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Western Wood-Pewee: Medium-sized flycatcher with dull olive-gray upperparts and pale olive-gray underparts. Head has darker cap and slight crest. The wings are dark with two white bars. Feeds on insects, spiders and berries. Quiet and solitary. Weak fluttering flight with shallow rapid wing beats.


Range and Habitat

Western Wood-Pewee: This species breeds from southeastern Alaska, the Northwest Territories, and Manitoba south throughout western U.S. from California east to Nebraska and south into Mexico. They spend winters in the tropics. Its preferred habitats include open woodlands, woodland edges, and orchards.

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SONGS AND CALLS

Voice Text

"pee-eeer"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • In a few areas along the western edge of the Great Plains the two pewees occur together without interbreeding-conclusive evidence that despite their great similarity, they are distinct species.
  • It makes a clapping noise with its bill while chasing and attacking intruders in nest defense.
  • The Eastern and Western Wood-Pewees are very difficult to tell apart visually, the two birds were formerly considered to be one species.
  • A group of pewees are collectively known as a "dribble" and a "squirt" of pewees.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP

CERange Map for Western Wood-Pewee

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Gary Owen Dick

Artist

Yury Lisyak

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

BACKYARD BIRDING

BIRDS AND BIRDING

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UnderpartsX
Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.
UpperpartsX
Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
CapX
The area on top of the head of the bird.
CrestX
Tufts of feathers on the head of the bird.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X