Alder Flycatcher

Empidonax alnorum

Order

PASSERIFORMES

Family

Tyrant Flycatchers (Tyrannidae)

Code 4

ALFL

Code 6

EMPALN

ITIS

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ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The Alder Flycatcher has a large breeding range of 3,390,000 square kilometers. This includes brushy swamps and wetlands in Alaska, Canada, the northern mid-western states, and the north-eastern United States south through the Appalachians. It winters in edge habitats in western South America. This species has a very large estimated breeding population of 130,000 individuals, and a conservation rating of Least Concern.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Alder Flycatcher: Small flycatcher with olive-brown upperparts, white underparts, and indistinct white eye-ring. Wings are olive-brown with two white or pale bars. Bill is short with orange lower mandible. Black legs and feet. Weak fluttering direct flight with shallow, rapid wing beats.

 

Range and Habitat

Alder Flycatcher: Breeds from Alaska east through Manitoba to Newfoundland and south to British Columbia, Great Lakes region, much of New England, and into the Mid-Atlantic states. Spends winters in tropics. Preferred habitats include alder and birch thickets near riparian areas, swamps, bogs, and ponds.

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SONGS AND CALLS

Voice Text

"fee-beer", "wee-bee"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The Alder Flycatcher is so similar to the Willow Flycatcher that they were once thought to be the same species. Song is the only definitive way to tell them apart.
  • An estimated 63% of their population breeds in Canada's boreal forest.
  • In an experiment on song learning, Alder Flycatchers were "tutored" with Willow Flycatcher song in the first two months of life. The next spring, they sang normal Alder Flycatcher song.
  • A group of flycatchers has many collective nouns, including an "outfield", "swatting", "zapper", and "zipper" of flycatchers.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP NORTH AMERICA

About this North America Map

This map shows how this species is distributed across North America.

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Gary Owen Dick

Artist

Michael Oberhofer

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.
Lower mandibleX
The lower part of the bill.
RiparianX
Relating to or living or located on the bank of a natural watercourse (as a river) or sometimes of a lake or a tidewater. 
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X