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Hi, I think this is a Hammond's Flycatcher but haven't seen one before so want to confirm. Seen today in Comox-Strathcona, BC. Distant, cropped photo below. I'm thinking Hammond's because: notched tail, big-headed, dark bill, appears to have a contrast between back and head. Mostly I'm thinking Hammond's because others are reporting them in the county, and I don't think it's one of the (few) Flycatchers I know how to recognize. Please let me know what you think, thanks.


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1 hour ago, PaulK said:

notched tail

Almost any bird can hold it's tail to create a notched look. With this odd pose and only one photo, I wouldn't trust it.

2 hours ago, PaulK said:

dark bill

We cannot see the mandible at all well enough to know the color of it, particularly given the overexposed background which makes dark things darker by comparison.

2 hours ago, PaulK said:

contrast between back and head

Most of the head is shadowed relative to the rest of the bird, so I wouldn't trust this, either.

All that said, it might well be a HAFL.

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21 hours ago, DLecy said:

Did you hear it call?

I heard something and it didn't sound like a PSFL. Merlin said Hammond's but it didn't save the recording for some reason. I have a bunch more audio that I haven't had a chance to go through yet, but I think this is ultimately going to stay unidentified. I'll update if I can dig out an audio clip.

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On 7/17/2021 at 9:08 PM, DLecy said:

Did you hear it call?

Ok, I definitively do not have any recordings of the bird. I don't remember it sounding like a PSFL, all I remember is not recognizing the sounds it was making (which doesn't rule out PSFL). I've checked with the BC bird atlas and both species are confirmed breeders in the region I'm in. I've got it as Empidonax sp. as I don't think we can narrow it down. I've added the only other useful picture I have which doesn't really add anything as far as I can tell. Thanks for the help everyone.


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