Brown-crested Flycatcher: Medium-sized flycatcher with olive-brown upperparts, yellow underparts, and pale gray throat. Bill is long, stout, and solid black. Wings have rufous patches. Tail is long and rufous. Legs and feet are black. Direct flight with rapid wing beats. Hovers and dips for prey.
Range and Habitat
Brown-crested Flycatcher: Breeds from southern California, southern Nevada, central Arizona, and southern Texas southward. Spends winters mainly south of the U.S.-Mexico border; few winter in southern Florida. Preferred habitats include arid lands in areas with cacti or large trees.
Cicadas are an important food item, but they prefer the silent, egg-laden females. Male cicadas let loose with a tirade of buzzing when caught and the flycatchers often release them in response.
The Brown-crested Flycatcher’s former name, "Wied's Crested Flycatcher," was in honor of Prince Maximilian of Wied, a German naturalist and traveler in early-19th-century America.
They are about 10% larger than the Ash-throated Flycatcher in most dimensions, but their bill is larger by 25%, with a more prominent hook.
A group of flycatchers has many collective nouns, including an "outfield", "swatting", "zapper", and "zipper" of flycatchers.
The Brown-crested Flycatcher has a large range, estimated globally at 10,000,000 square kilometers. It is native to the Americas and can live in a variety of habitats from forests to savannas, shrublands, and wetlands. It has an estimated global population of some 7,700,000 individuals. While the population trends have not been precisely determined, the species is not believed to be experiencing a population decline near the thresholds that necessitate inclusion on the IUCN Red List. Because of these population trends, the evaluation status of the Brown-Crested Flycatcher is Least Concern.