Dusky Flycatcher (Empidonax oberholseri)
Status in the Checklist Area - Uncommon to rare*

An annual migrant in the spring recorded mostly from the Abbotsford/Chilliwack border east. Has bred in the checklist area. Tends to prefer more open areas with low trees and shrubs but may be found in many habitats during migration. Migrates south to Mexico.

Similar species:
While all Empidonax flycatchers are quite similar, Hammond's, Least and the yet to be detected in our checklist area Grey Flycatcher are the most similar. Hammond's migrates in the spring with similar timing and is usually a contender in figuring out what flycatcher you are looking at. Hammond's Flycatcher is larger headed, shorter and darker billed (from underneath) and with a longer primary projection making it appear shorter tailed. See photos below. Voice is very reliable between the two with Dusky's call note being a soft "Whit!" (similar to Least and Willow Flycatchers) and Hammond's call note an enthusiastic "Peek!". See video below.

Ehrlich, Dobkin and Wheye, (1988)

Noteworthy Data
Vedder Canal Dyke, Chilliwack G. Gadsden One feeding in willows downstream of Keith Wilson Road Bridge.
25-Apr-2012 Hope Airport, Hope G. Gadsden Two along Airport Road. Earliest record.
10-Aug-2011 Hope Airport, Hope D. Beeke, T. Beeke One bird. Latest record.
04-Jun-2011 Bear Mountain, Harrison Hot Springs D. Beeke One bird. Possible breeding.
30-May-2011 Cheam Lake Wetlands, Popkum G. Gadsden Feeding near beaver pond.
27-May-2011 Hope Airport, Hope D. Beeke, C. McDonald One individual.
26-Jun-2010 Skagit Valley Provincial Park D. Beeke, G. Gadsden On nest along Silver Skagit Road. Observed feeding four young June 30, 2010. First confirmed breeding record for the species.
08-May-2010 Tuyteens Road, Agassiz K. R. Jones One bird calling.
30-May-2009 Sowaqua Creek Road, Coquihalla G. Gadsden Male singing in recently logged forest habitat. On territory?
06-May-2008 Island 22 Regional Park, Chilliwack G. Gadsden One individual feeding from the top of blackberry bushes.
02-May-2006 Neilson Regional Park, Mission G. Gadsden One in willows along Draper Creek.
Audio and Video    
A short video of the bird making its call notes - Click Here to view

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