Acadian Flycatchers

Acadian Flycatchers (Empidonax virescens)

The Acadian Flycatchers, Empidonax virescens, belong to the tyrant flycatcher family.

Acadian Flycatchers on the Tree Branch
Acadian Flycatchers on the Tree Branch


The upper plumage is olive, darker on the tail and wings. White bars can be seen on the wings. The underparts are mostly whitish; the chest is washed with olive.

They have white eye rings and a wide bill. The upper beak is dark-coloured, and the lower beak is yellowish.

Habitat / Distribution

They are found across the eastern United States and southwestern Ontario, migrating to Central America and northern South America.

Their numbers have declined somewhat in the southern parts of their range.

They breed in deciduous forests, typically near water. They build a loose cup nest in a horizontal fork in a tree or shrub.

Acadian Flycatchers Perched on a Tree
Acadian Flycatchers Perched on a Tree

In some areas, Brown-headed Cowbirds lay their eggs into the nests of the Acadian Flycatchers, for them to incubate and raise their brood.

Diet / Food

They eat insects caught in flight or pick them off the foliage while hovering.

They also eat some berries, seeds, and plant material.

Call / Song

This bird’s song is peet-sa, and their call is a soft peet.

Gordon Ramel

Gordon is an ecologist with two degrees from Exeter University. He's also a teacher, a poet and the owner of 1,152 books. Oh - and he wrote this website.

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