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Yellow-bellied Flycatcher

A small migratory bird species with an olive-green upperparts, a yellow belly and a distinctive eye-ring, and it is commonly found in deciduous forests and woodlands across North America.

Although its yellow belly makes it somewhat distinctive, the Yellow-bellied Flycatcher is a member of the difficult to identify group of Empidonax flycatchers. Yellow-bellied Flycatchers are territorial in both the breeding season and in the winter, although winter territories are solitary in nature while breeding territories involve a pair.

Early naturalists, egg collectors, and modern ornithologists all share the view that Yellow-bellied Flycatchers are very adept at hiding their nests, making detailed studies of breeding behavior difficult. Many basic life history questions remain to be answered about this species.

Photograph © Greg Lavaty

Description of the Yellow-bellied Flycatcher


yellow-bellied-flycatcher - Greg Lavaty


Photograph © Greg Lavaty

The Yellow-bellied Flycatcher has greenish upperparts, yellow underparts with an olive wash across the breast, two bold wing bars, and a yellow eye ring.


Sexes similar.

Seasonal change in appearance

Very little, although wing bars are narrower in the fall.


Juveniles have slightly tawny wing bars.


Woodlands and boreal forest.




Forages by flying out from a perch to capture flying insects.


Breeds across much of Canada and the northeastern U.S. and winters in Mexico and Central America.

Fun Facts

Territorial birds will attack not only intruding flycatchers, but also larger birds that pose a threat to the nest.

It took many years for early ornithologist’s to “discover” this species, because it was often mistaken for other flycatchers in its genus.


The song is often described as a “che-bunk”, while the call is a whistled “che-weep”.

Similar Species

  • Other flycatchers in the genus Empidonax are very similar, but less yellow on the underparts and eye ring.


The nest is a cup of mosses and other plant material placed within moss near the ground.

Number: 3-4.
Color: White with darker markings.

Incubation and fledging:
– Young hatch at 12-14 days.
– Young fledge (leave the nest) in 13-14 days after hatching but remain with the adults for some time.

Bent Life History of the Yellow-bellied Flycatcher

Published by the Smithsonian Institution between the 1920s and the 1950s, the Bent life history series of monographs provide an often colorful description of the birds of North America. Arthur Cleveland Bent was the lead author for the series. The Bent series is a great resource and often includes quotes from early American Ornithologists, including Audubon, Townsend, Wilson, Sutton and many others.

Bent Life History for the Yellow-bellied Flycatcher – the common name and sub-species reflect the nomenclature in use at the time the description was written.


To most of us this pretty little flycatcher is known only as a spring and fall migrant. It is not often seen then, as it is a shy, retiring bird, frequenting the low, wet, swampy thickets along streams or the borders of swamps or ponds. Since it is mostly silent on migrations, its characteristic notes do not tell us of its presence, and as it generally succeeds in keeping out of sight it must be sought for diligently. In its summer home its voice betrays it, but there, also, the searcher must invade the moist, gloomy morass of some northern forest bog, beneath the shade of spruces and firs, and endure the attacks of hoards of black flies and mosquitoes, to get even a glimpse of this woodland waif.

Dr. Samuel S. Dickey, who has had considerable experience with this flycatcher, says in his notes: “In the Northern States and in Canada they are met with in the shadowy underwoods of evergreens, paper birches, and mountain ashes, where cranberries, trailing white snowberry, rare orchids, and an array of slightly emerald mosses carpet the forest floor and cover the crumbling logs.” In Northumberland County, New Brunswick, he and R. C. Harlow found it in the evergreen forest, where they explored “many a little glade, beautified with an array of botanical treasures, such as the twayblade (Li,~tera cordata), small green wood orchis (Hal~enaria clavellata), and green coralroot (Ckoralltoriza trifida). In the Adirondack Mountains of New York yellow-bellied flycatchers were present in mossy glades under the towering firs. Now and then a bird was routed from colonies of tripwood (Vilntrnum alnifolia), over pretty beds of the twinflower (Linnaca borealis), and the red-berried Cornus canadensis” In the southern portions of its breeding range, which extends at least as far sout.h as the Pocono Mountains in Pennsylvania, the yellow-bellied flycatcher finds congenial summer homes only on the mountains, at elevations of 2,500 feet or more, among the forests of spruces, firs, hemlocks, and tamaracks, and where the damp ground is carpeted with sphagnum moss.

Nesting: The earliest accounts of the nesting habits and the eggs of the yellow-bellied flycatcher were based on wrong identification and are known to be quite at variance with present-day knowledge; the nests were said to be placed in the forks of bushes and the eggs to be white and unspotted, whereas we now know that the nests are always placed on or near the ground, or in cavities in the upturned roots of fallen trees, and the eggs are spotted.

We are indebted to H. A. Purdie (1878) for the first authentic account of the nesting habits of this species. He and Ruthven Deane were shown this nest in Houlton, Aroostook County, Maine, in 1878, by a collector named James Bradbury. He relates the incident as follows:

Mr. Bradhury informed us that he found, on June 15, a nest unknown to him with one egg. On the 18th be conducted us to the edge of a wooded swamp, and, pointing to the roots of an upturned tree, said the nest was there. We approached cautiously, and soon saw the structure and then the sitting bird, which appeared to be sunken in a ball of green moss. Our eager eyes were within two feet of her, thus easily identifying the species, when she darted off; but, to make doubly sure, Mr. Deane shot her. There was no mistake; we at last had a genuine nest and eggs of the Yellow-belliel Flycatcher. A large dwelling it was for so small and trim a bird. Built In and on to the black mud clinging to the roots, but two feet from the ground, the bulk of the nest was composed of dry moss, while the outside was faced with beautiful fresh green mosses, thickest around the rim or parapet. The home of the Bridge Pewee (Sailornis fuscus) was at once suggested. But no mud entered Into the actual composition of the nest, though at first we thought so, so much was clinging to it when removed. The lining was mainly of fine black rootlets, with a few pine-needles and grass-stems. The nest gives the following measurements: depth inside, one and one half Inches; depth outside, four and a quarter inches; circumference Inside, seven and a quarter Inches.

Other nests have been found in upturned roofs, notably one found by Major Bendire (1895) in Herkimer County, N. Y., which he described as follows:

The nest was placed among the upturned roots of a medium-sized spruce tree, to which considerable soil, which was entirely covered with a luxuriant growtb of spagnum moss, was stiii attached. This perpendicular moss and fern covered surface measured about 6 by 8 feet. The nest was sunk Into the moss and soil behind, about 14 Inches above the ground; the entrance was partly hidden by some ferns and the growing moss around it, and, taken all in all, It was one of the neatest nnd most cunningly hidden pieces of bird architecture I have ever seen. I might have walked past a dozen times without noticing it. It contained four eggs, In which incubation was about one-third advanced. The entrance was nearly circular, and measured about 1V4 inches in diameter. The inner cup of the nest itself measured about 2 Inches in diameter and 1º inches in depth. It was composed of fine grasses and a few black, hair-like rootiets and flower stems of mosses.

Nests of the yellow-bellied flycatcher in upturned roots are the exception rather than the rule; most of the nests reported have been on or near the ground, on the sides of hummocks or mounds, and well hidden in sphagnum moss or other low vegetation; some have been found under the roots of standing trees or stumps; and W. J. Brown, of West Mount, Quebec, tells me that he once found a nest ”on a cliff near a trout stream.” He has probably found more nests of this flycatcher than any other man, He says that it is “very abundant” in the County of Matane, Quebec, on the lower St. Lawrence, where it nests in the “thick evergreen woods Ofl the borders of peat and blueberry bogs.” He says, in his letter, that he has the records of over 200 nests found in that county, and that he Locates 10 to 15 nests every year. “The nests, of course, always have moss and are lined with black plant fibres and fine rootlets. A few nests have been lined with fine, bleached grasses only.”

The finest description of a nest of this species that I can find is that of a nest found by Dr. A. K. Fisher near the summit of Slide Mountain in the Catskill Mountains, N. Y., at an altitude of over 8,500 feet, quoted by Major Bendire (1895) as follows:

The nest was built in a cavity scooped in a bed of moss facing the side of a low rock. The cavity had been excavated to a depth of 2½ inches and was 2 inches across. The opening, but little less than the width of the nest, was 9 inches from the ground, and, partially hidden by overhanging roots, revealed the eggs within only to close inspection.

The primary foundation of the nest was a layer of brown rootlets; upon this rested the bulk of the structure, consisting of moss matted together with fine-broken weed stalks and other fragmentary material. The inner ,,est could be removed entire from the outer wall, and was composed of a loosely woven but, from its thickness, somewhat dense fabric of fine materials, consisting mainly of the bleached stems of some slender sedge and the black and shining rootlets of, apparently, ferns, closely resembling horsehair. Between the two sections of the structure, and appearing only when they were separated, was a scant layer of the glossy orange pedicels of a moss (Polytrichum) not a fragment of which was elsewhere visible. The walls of the internal nest were about one-half an inch in thickness, and had doubtless been accomplished with a view of protection from dampness.

Prof. Daniel C. Eaton, of New Haven, very kindly assumed the task of determining the different species of moss which entered into the composition of the nest and of the moss bed in which it rested, and his investigation disclosed the fact that the mosses which abounded immediately about the nest had not been utilized as building material. * * * In addition there were found among the materials of construction catkia scales of the birch, leaves of the balsam, and fragments of the dried pinnae of ferns; but, as suggested by Professor Eaton, the presence of some of these was probably accidental. Springing from the verdant moss beds immediately about the nest were scattered plants of Oa’aUs acetoseila, Trientaiis americana, Solidago tlI4Jr8oidca, and Clin-toaia boreaZ~s.

William L. Bailey (1916) reports the finding of three nests of the yellow-bellied flycatcher on Pocono Mountain, Pa., by himself and by some of his friends. He says:

The nesting sites were all in little open sunny spots of wet sphagnum in the dense secluded forest of spruce, hemlock, balsam and tamarack; and all through the moss grew the wintergreen, bunch berry and occasionally the fragrant white swamp azalea. The nests were hidden in the sides of little mounds of sphagnum; only a little black flat hole was visible, which did not even look suspicious. The nest which had young was composed first of small spruce twigs, and then lined thickly with pine needles only, and set right In the sphagnum deeply cupped. As I had not flushed the bird, I poked my finger Into It for investigation before I knew it to be a nest. Mr. Stuart’s nest, which contained eggs, was simply lined with pine needles.

A. nest found by Dr. Dickey in New Brunswick was a rather loose affair, “a weave of prett.y sprays of sphagnum, the Knight’s crest moss (Hypnum dendroides), some dark rootlets, a few cuims of ,Junou.s, and sedge (Carex di-sperma), and was nicely lined with the brown needles of the red pine (Pinu.s re.sinosa) .”

Eggs: W. J. Brown tells me that the usual number of eggs is three or four; in over 200 nests he has found only 25 sets of five. The eggs vary from ovate to short-ovate and are practically lusterless. The ground color is pure, dull white. There are sometimes a few small blotches, but more often fine dots sparingly scattered over the egg, or more or less grouped about the larger end, rarely concentrated into a wreath. These markings are in various shades of brown, “cinnamon-rufous,” “walnut brown,” “pinkish cinnamon,” or “cinnamon-buff”; Bendire (1895) says: “Occasionally a specimen shows a speck or two of heliotrope purple.” The measurements of 50 eggs average 17.4 by 13.4 millimeters; the eggs showing the four extremes measure 18.6 by 14.0, 18.1 by 14.7, 16.0 by 13.0, and 17.0 by 12.3 millimeters.

Plumages: Dr. Dwight (1900) says that the natal down is “brownish olive-green.” He says of the juvenal plumage: “Upper parts, sides of head and throat, an obscure pectoral band, and lesser wing coverts olive-green, the crown feathers centrally darker. Wings and tail deep olive-brown; median and greater wing coverts edged with rich buff yellow forming two distinct wing bands, secondaries narrowly and tertiaries broadly edged with yellowish white. Below sulphur-yellow, including the orbital ring.~~ C. J. Maynard (1896) says that the nestlings are “quite slaty above, and much lighter below [than fall juvenals], being nearly white, and the darker areas are slaty.” Dickey and van liossem (1938) write:

The postiuvenal plumage (the “first winter plumage”) is, as supposed by Dwight, not fully acquired until very late in the fall. A specimen taken October S is still largely in jtivenai feather ventrally, while one taken November 30 still shows many juvenal feathers on the lower throat. This is the last part of the body plumage to be replaced. The juvenal remiges and rectrices are retained until April. In early April there commences a complete spring molt (the “first prenuptial”) which involves the entire body and the replacement of the old, worn Juvenal wing and tail feathers. A specimen collected April 6 has just commenced this molt and six others, taken between April 22 and April 80, represent every stage to its completion.

The adults vary a good deal in the time of completion of the fall molt. * * * In the present adult series, two specimens taken December 1 and 7, respectively, have nearly finished the body molt. The wing molt is extremely slow and, starting as it does about the time the last of the new body plumage has been acquired, takes most of the winter and early spring. * * Thus the wing replacement fills in, roughly, the time interval between the winter (postnuptial) and spring (prenuptial) molts. The complete, spring, body molt of the adults (and juveniles) begins in late March and is finished by the end of ApriL”

Food: Professor Beal (1912) examined the stomachs of 103 yellow-bellied flycatchers, in which the contents were practically 97 percent animal matter and 3 percent vegetable matter. He says that “its bill of fare includes insects of a number of species which are injurious to garden, orchard, or forest, as the striped squash beetle, several species of weevils, tent caterpillars, and leaf rollers.” Beetles amount to 16.53 percent, with less than 2 percent of useful species. He continues:

Hymenoptera amount to 46.25 percent of the food and were found in 81 stomachs. Of these, 48 contained ants, which amounted to 13.42 per cent of the whole. * * * This bird is probably the greatest eater of ants of any of the flycatchers and stands near the head in the eating of Hymenoptera in general. * * * Hemiptera were found in 83 stomachs only, and amount to 4.16 per cent of the food. * * * Diptera were contained in only stomachs, hut amounted to 14.89 per cent. * * * They belonged to several families, including the house fly, horsefly, and the long-legged crane fly. * * * Lepidoptera were found in ~ stomachs, of which 4 contained the adult moths and 24 their larvae or caterpillars. * * * Spiders are eaten by this bird to a greater extent than by any of the other flycatchers. They amount to 8.52 per cent of the food and are taken quite regularly through the season. Beginning with 2.21 per cent in May they gradually increase to 14.28 per cent in September. Hymenoptera alone stand higher in the food of that month. With the exception of certain nestlings no other species of bird yet studied shows so high a percentage of spiders In Its food, though wrens and titmice and some warhiers approach It.

He reports that “the vegetable food consists of a few small fruits, none of which are of domestic varieties, a few seeds of poIson Ivy, some cedar foliage, some scales from a bud, and rubbish. The poison Ivy Is the only thing of any Interest and that was found in only one stomach.”

Dr. J. M. Wheaton (1882) noticed a pair of birds, which he afterward identified as yellow-bellied flycatchers, “feeding on some elm saplings. Alighting near the bottom of the trunk they hopped from one to another of the alternate twigs, ascending spirally. Meantime they gathered their food, which I soon discovered to be small black ants.”

Gardner P. Stickney wrote an interesting letter to Professor Beal about some unusual feeding habits of this flycateher, which was afterward published (Stickney, 1928). During the latter part of September there was a heavy, wet snowstorm at his camp in northern Wisconsin, and after the storm many birds came to feed on the berries of the mountain-ash trees:

In the afternoon of the day following the storm, two yellow-bellied flycatchers appeared among the other birds in these small trees and seemed to be very fond of the mountain-ash berries. Instead of handling the berries as the other birds did, the flycatcher would pick a berry and crush it between its mandibles, getting out the pulp and dropping the skin, rather perfectly clean, to the ground. There were so many of the birds of various sorts and the berries were going so rapidly, that I detached four or five bunches of the berries and took them into camp.

It took only two or three days for the birds to otherwise entirely denude ibe trees of the berries and after the last berry had been picked from the trees, I noted two flycatchers hopping around on the ground and picking up the berries which had been dropped as the various species were feeding in the trees. The flycatchers were very tame and It occurred to me that I might feed them with some of the berries which I had previously picked and had in camp. Working very carefully in an hour or two I had these two yellow-bellied flycatchers on my knee, picking the mountain-ash berries from between my thumb and fore-finger. It was a very delightful experience and it was Interesting to see how thoroughly the flycatchers would clean the berries, eating everything but the skins, which they invariably dropped to the ground. The birds stayed around for two or three days, In fact as long as I had any berries to feed thenz and then disappeared. The last day that they were with us was bright and sunny and they spent most of their time fly-catching, but would occasionally come hack to me and take a berry.

Behavior: Mr. Maynard (1896) gives a very good account of the normal behavior of this flycatcher on its migrations, as most of us are likely to see it, in the following words:

Yellow-bellied Flycatchers are most decidedly, of all the genus, the true children of the shade, for they are seldom found elsewhere than In the thIckest swamps. Even in these secluded retreats, they avoid the tops of the bushes, keeping well down in the dense foliage, often perching within a foot of the ground. Alder swamps which are so filled with undergrowth that it Is difficult to force one’s way through them, are the favorite resorts of these Flycatchers. It is extremely difficult to detect the presence of these little birds In such places, not only on account of the luxurious vegetation, but principally because they are extremely quiet, the only note which they utter during the migrations being a plaintive pea given only at intervals and, so low as to be inaudible a few yards distant. I have frequently entered a swamp In whIch I was certin some of these Flycatchers had taken refuge and have, at first, been unable to find a single specimen, but upon remaining quiet for a moment, I would hear the low peas in all directions. Guided by the sound of the nearest, I would proceed cautiously in its direction and after a moment’s search, would see the bird as he sat on some low twig, occasionally launching outward for a short distance to catch a passing insect which his keen eye had informed him was especially palatable. As long as I remained perfectly still, the Flycatcher would pursue his vocations but upon my making the slightest movement, he would observe me and, giving a quick, upward flirt of his tail, would flit silently hut with marvelous celerity among the brown stems of the alders, and skillfully wending his way through the labyrinth of twigs, vines, and leaves, he would almost instantly disappear.

In its summer home this flycatcher is equally shy and retiring, not easily approached and oftener heard than seen. It can be lured from its shady retreat by the well-known imitation of a squeaking mouse or of the cries of a bird in distress, a trick so often used by ornithologists to call birds into the open. The flycatcher comes eagerly enough, together with all the other small birds within hearing, but he eyes the intruder only momentarily before he discovers the deception and dashes back into cover; he cannot be so easily fooled again.

Voice: The vocabulary of the yellow-bellied flycatcher is not elaborate or particularly musical, but it is quite distinctive and its few notes are easily recognized. Bendire (1895) writes: “Its call note is a low, plaintive ‘peeh peeli,’ the last part more emphasized; another, an alarm note, sounds like ‘turn turn’; the same note I put down the previous season as ‘trehe-eb, trebe-eh,’ with the remark that it reminded me somewhat of the sound produced by sliding a finger over a violin string.~~ Dr. Dwight (Chapman, 1912) says: “The song is more suggestive of a sneeze on the bird’s part than of any other sound with which it may be compared. It is an abrupt ps~-~k’, almost in one explosive syllable, harsh like the deeper tones of a House Wren, and less musical than the similar but longer songs of the Alder or the Acadian Flycatcher. It is hardly surprising that the birds sing very little when we see with what a convulsive jerk of the head the notes are produced. Its plaintive call is far more melodious: a soft, mournful whistle consisting of two notes, the second higher pitched and prolonged, with rising inflection, resembling in a measure There are almost as many interpretations and renderings of this bird’s notes as there are descriptions of them. L. M. Terrill (1915) writes:

Owing to the ventriloqulal quallty in the voice of this Flycatcher it was some time before I discovered the bird, probably the female, perched on a branch two feet from the ground. Its alarm was sharper and more abruptly ended than the call notes, sounding somewhat like the syllables “pee-wheep”; the first note suggesting the Wood Pewee and the latter the Alder Flycatcher. The last note commenced with a rolling and ended with a grating sound, as if the bird had snapped off the sound by suddenly closing its mandihies, accompanied by a tall and bodily twitching that indicated considerable effort.

Hearing the usual call notes one would not suspect much effort, in fact, their ordinary notes, “peeh-peeh,” the latter slightly accented and prolonged, have none of the explosiveness of “alnorum,” but are peculiarly soft, drowsy, and effortless.

Various other renderings of the call note are: Chee-weep, cheeweep; phee-i; puh-e~; peS; or too-wed. There seems to be some confusion, or difference of opinion, among observers as to which note isthe alarm note, which the song, and which the call note; and I shall not attempt to differentiate between them. Francis H. Allen (MS.) thinks that “Dwight’s rendering of the song, in Chapman’s Handbook, is very good when it is heard near at hand; heard farther off, the song sounds more like killink.” Forbush (1927) says that “on its breeding grounds a song is attempted with very indifferent success, given by Dr. Hoy as pea-wdyk-pea-w~yk several times repeated; it is soft and ‘not unpleasant.'” Dr. Glover M. Allen (1903), on June 19, in New Hampshire, “heard one of these birds give a peculiar flight song, just after sunset. It flew slantingly upward for some twenty feet and repeated a number of times alternately its ordinary ‘pu-ee’ and ‘leilliok.'” Field marks: This is a small flycatcher, olive-green above and more decidedly yellow below, including the throat, than any other small flycatcher in eastern North America; in fall, when some other flycatchers are somewhat yellowish below, this character is not so prominent, though it is yellower then than the others; and it has a conspicuous yellow eye ring.

Fall: The yellow-bellied flycatchers begin to leave their northern breeding grounds during the last half of August. They usually pass through Massachusetts between August 25 and September 25, with a few scattering late dates up to December 6. They frequent the same kind of dense, swampy thickets as in spring and can be seen only by the most ardent observers who are willing to look for them in their still, shady retreats.

Taverner and Swales (1907) say that, in Ontario, “this species seems to start on its southward migration about the middle of August,” but, at Point Pelee, “others come in before the earlier arrivals leave, and many linger until well into September.”

Winter: In El Salvador, Dickey and van ERossem (1938) report this flycatcher as “fairly common in fall, winter, and spring throughout the Lower Arid Tropical Zone and, locally, in the lower edge of the oak-pine association in the Arid Upper Tropical. Extreme elevations are sea level and 3,600 feet. Dates of arrival and departure are October 8 and April 30.

“The yellow-bellied flycatcher, while confined to levels below 3,600 feet, was, during the proper seasons, fairly numerous and evenly distributed. Although found in all sorts of woodland it shows preference for thin, open undergrowth beneath heavy forest. * * * “It was noticeable that the winter population remained fixed, and there was little or no local shifting once the winter quarters were selected. Each individual had its own particular patch of shrubbery where it could be seen or heard at all times of the day.”

Range: North and Central America east of the Rocky Mountains; accidental in British Columbia and Greenland.

Breeding range: The yellow-bellied flycatcher breeds north to southern Mackenzie (probably Taltson River and Soulier Lake); Ontario (north shore of Lake Superior) ; Quebec (Lake Timiskaming, Lake Mistassini, Godbout, and Anticosti Island) ; and Newfoundland (Port Saunders). East to Newfoundland (Port Saunders, Nicholsville, and 3-pond Barrens); Nova Scotia (Dartmouth); New Brunswick (Grand Manan); Maine (Ellsworth and Auburn); southern New Hampshire (Mount Monadnock) ; southeastern New York (Slide Mountain); and northeastern Pennsylvania (Mount Pocono). South to northern Pennsylvania (Mount Pocono); southern Ontario (probably London and Listowel); southern Wisconsin (Bark River and Albion); northern Minnesota (Lake Itasca and Moose River); southern Manitoba (probably Winnipeg, probably Portage Ia Prairie, and Oak Lake); probably southern Saskatchewan (Johnston Lake); and central Alberta (Edmonton and Glenevis). West to Alberta (Glenevis, Belvedere, probably Lake Athabaska, and probably Smith’s Landing) and Mackenzie (probably Taltson River).

Winter range: During the winter season these birds appear to be concentrated in eastern Mexico north to central Tamaulipas (Rio Ma~inez); and south through other Central American countries to Panama (iDivala, Cava, and Veragua).

Spring migration: Early dates of spring arrival are: Florida: St. Marks, May 2. Georgia: Atlanta, May 6. Virginia: Lynchburg, May 9. District of Columbia: Washington, May 9. New Jersey: Militown, May 10. Massachusetts: North Amherst, May 8. New Hampshire: Monadnock, May 18. New Brunswick: St. John, May 19. Quebec: Lake Mistassini, June 2. Louisiana: Bayou Sara, April 26. Mississippi: Biloxi, April 30. Tennessee: Athens, April 25. Kentucky: Lexington, May 1. Missouri: St. Louis, May 8. Illinois: Chicago, May 11. Ontario: Ottawa, May 19. Iowa: Grinnell, May 14. Minnesota: Lanesboro, May 19. Alberta: Lake Athabaska, June 3.

Fall migration: Late dates of fall departure are: Alberta: Camrose, August 26. Manitoba: Shoal Lake, September 7. Minnesota: Minneapolis, September 28. Wisconsin: Milwaukee, September 25. lowa: Sigourney, September 25. Ontario: Toronto, October 12. Michigan: Detroit, September 27. Ohio: Hillsboro, October 6. Iilinois: Rantoul, October 1. Missouri: St. Louis, October 5. Mississippi: Biloxi, October 16. New Brunswick: St. John, September 4. Quebec: Montreal, Sepember 24. Maine: Portland, September 21. Massachusetts: Harvard, September 23. New Jersey: Morristown, October 9. Virginia: Lynchburg, October 9. North Carolina: Piney Creek, October 2. South Carolina: Porchers Bluff, October 8. Florida: Leon County, October 11.

Casual records: An adult male was collected at Pike River, in the Atlin District of British Columbia, on August 3, 1914, and another was taken at Ilazelton in this Province on July 24, 1913. Two specimens were taken in 1853 at Godthaab, Greenland, and another was obtained at sea off Cape Farew~ll, in September 1878.

Egg dates: Alberta: 3 records, June 8 to 20. Maine: 11 records, June 1 to July 12.

New York: 10 records, June 10 to July 4.

About the Author

Sam Crowe

Sam is the founder of He has been birding for over 30 years and has a world list of over 2000 species. He has served as treasurer of the Texas Ornithological Society, Sanctuary Chair of Dallas Audubon, Editor of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology's "All About Birds" web site and as a contributing editor for Birding Business magazine. Many of his photographs and videos can be found on the site.

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