Commonly known as great crested flycatchers,inhabits the Nearctic and Neotropical regions of North, Central and South America. This migratory flycatcher breeds across the eastern half of the United States and the southern edge of Canada. During the non-breeding season, may be found in southern Central America and northeast South America. Some may inhabit the southern tip of Florida and Cuba year-round.
is a forest-dwelling species that prefers deciduous or mixed-deciduous woodlands. This species is found in habitats with a semi-open canopy or forest edge. Urban areas with large canopy trees also provide habitat for this species. is an obligate, secondary cavity breeder and during the breeding season will seek out forests that provide snags and pre-made cavities.
is a large flycatcher with similar, yet brighter colors than others of the genus. It measures 22.2 cm in length, with a wingspan of 33.0 cm, and weighs in at 34 g. The dark gray head is large, rounded, and slightly domed or crested at the top. This species features a heavy, thick bill that is mostly black with an extensive, pale base. The gray coloration on the head is darkest on the top, then lightens and extends through the throat and breast, where it contrasts with the bright yellow belly and underside. The back is dark olive that blends into dark flight feathers edged in white. Secondary feathers are a bright rufous, as are the tail feathers. Legs and feet are dark brown to black. This species does not display any sexual dimorphism.
Juveniles are difficult to distinguish from adults but are overall duller in coloration. Slight differentiation may be discernible in a bird in the hand, where cinnamon-tinged upper tail coverts, broader rufous edges of primaries, and cinnamon terminal edges of wing coverts may be visible. (Lanyon, 1997; Sibley, 2000)
Though little data exists, lifespan for (Lanyon, 1997)ranges from 2 to 10 years old. Lifespan estimates for this species are difficult to assess as few individuals return to their natal area. The maximum recorded lifespan comes from an individual that was recaptured 14 years after being banded as an adult. Possible causes of mortality include predation during the nesting stage, collisions with man-made structures during migration, and exposure to pesticides.
Though little information exists, territory size for (Lanyon, 1997)is estimated to range from 1.6 to 3.2 ha.
butterflies and moths, beetles, grasshoppers and crickets, bees and wasps, flies, and spiders. Necropsies have shown some individuals occasionally eat green anoles. Types of fruits consumed have not been reported. (Lanyon, 1997)is an insectivorous species, but will occasionally eat fruits, particularly during the non-breeding season. This species primarily employs hover-gleaning methods to aerially snatch prey from the surface of foliage. It often forages from a perch within the upper canopy of green trees, notably higher than many of its insectivorous neighbors. Common prey items include
Most predation occurs during the nesting stage, as eggs and young are vulnerable and make easy prey for predators. The most common predators of indigo snakes, yellow rat snakes, and corn snakes eating eggs, young, and adults. (Lanyon, 1997; Taylor and Kershner, 1991)are snakes, and observations have been made of
As primarily an insectivore, Melanerpes erythrocephalus) and red-bellied woodpeckers (M. carolinus), eastern bluebirds (Sialia sialis), house wrens (Troglodytes aedon), tree swallows (Tachycineta bicolor), European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris), and red squirrels (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus). Exact levels of competition are unknown, but there has been an instance where a pair of displaced a roosting Melanerpes carolinus from a nest box.likely plays a significant role in controlling local insect populations. Eggs, young, and even adults may serve as prey for local predators such as snakes. This secondary cavity nester may compete for nesting sites with other cavity nesting species such as red-headed (
Diptera, Coleoptera, Lepidoptera, and Psocoptera. Two species of subcutaneous fly larvae (Neomusca porteri and Protocalliphora hirudo) have been found residing in nestlings but seem to have little effect on nestling survival. Nestling are also hosts to at least one species of mite (Ornithonyssus bursa), mainly in northern temperate habitats. (Lanyon, 1997; Taylor and Kershner, 1991)is also host for a variety of insects and parasites, primarily during the nesting stage as cavities are sheltered, enclosed habitats that provide suitable habitat for parasites to thrive. Four orders of insects have been found residing in nests including
Currently,provides no known economic benefits to humans.
There are no known adverse effects ofon humans.
Currently, the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) considers ("BirdLife International. Myiarchus crinitus", 2010; Lanyon, 1997; Miller, 2002; Taylor and Kershner, 1991)to be of least concern as it has a large geographic range and population numbers are high and stable. Like most birds, this species is negatively affected by several human activities including pesticide use, large man-made structures built in migratory pathways, and conversion of forests to urban or agricultural areas. These activities result in decreased food availability, collision mortality, and habitat loss, respectively. One large concern for all cavity nesting species is the loss of standing dead trees (snags) during "clean" forestry practices where these trees are often removed for aesthetic reasons. Snags are critical for these species as they provide highly suitable locations for nest cavities. In some areas, nest boxes have been employed to provide alternative nesting sites. Nesting success within these nest boxes is overall comparable to that of natural cavities and may be a viable management tool if habitats continue to decline.
Rachelle Sterling (author), Special Projects, Tanya Dewey (editor), University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, George Hammond (editor), Animal Diversity Web Staff, Tricia Jones (editor), University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, ADW Zookeeper (editor), University of Michigan-Ann Arbor.
living in the Nearctic biogeographic province, the northern part of the New World. This includes Greenland, the Canadian Arctic islands, and all of the North American as far south as the highlands of central Mexico.
living in the southern part of the New World. In other words, Central and South America.
uses sound to communicate
young are born in a relatively underdeveloped state; they are unable to feed or care for themselves or locomote independently for a period of time after birth/hatching. In birds, naked and helpless after hatching.
Referring to an animal that lives in trees; tree-climbing.
having body symmetry such that the animal can be divided in one plane into two mirror-image halves. Animals with bilateral symmetry have dorsal and ventral sides, as well as anterior and posterior ends. Synapomorphy of the Bilateria.
an animal that mainly eats meat
uses smells or other chemicals to communicate
animals that use metabolically generated heat to regulate body temperature independently of ambient temperature. Endothermy is a synapomorphy of the Mammalia, although it may have arisen in a (now extinct) synapsid ancestor; the fossil record does not distinguish these possibilities. Convergent in birds.
parental care is carried out by females
forest biomes are dominated by trees, otherwise forest biomes can vary widely in amount of precipitation and seasonality.
An animal that eats mainly insects or spiders.
offspring are produced in more than one group (litters, clutches, etc.) and across multiple seasons (or other periods hospitable to reproduction). Iteroparous animals must, by definition, survive over multiple seasons (or periodic condition changes).
parental care is carried out by males
makes seasonal movements between breeding and wintering grounds
Having one mate at a time.
having the capacity to move from one place to another.
the area in which the animal is naturally found, the region in which it is endemic.
reproduction in which eggs are released by the female; development of offspring occurs outside the mother's body.
breeding is confined to a particular season
reproduction that includes combining the genetic contribution of two individuals, a male and a female
living in residential areas on the outskirts of large cities or towns.
uses touch to communicate
that region of the Earth between 23.5 degrees North and 60 degrees North (between the Tropic of Cancer and the Arctic Circle) and between 23.5 degrees South and 60 degrees South (between the Tropic of Capricorn and the Antarctic Circle).
Living on the ground.
defends an area within the home range, occupied by a single animals or group of animals of the same species and held through overt defense, display, or advertisement
the region of the earth that surrounds the equator, from 23.5 degrees north to 23.5 degrees south.
living in cities and large towns, landscapes dominated by human structures and activity.
uses sight to communicate
2010. "BirdLife International. Myiarchus crinitus" (On-line). IUCN 2010. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Accessed June 12, 2011 at http://www.iucnredlist.org/apps/redlist/details/145324/0.
Bent, A. 1942. Life histories of North American flycatchers, larks, swallows and their allies. Bulletin of the United States National Museum, 179: 106-123.
Ehrlich, P., D. Dobkin, D. Wheye. 1988. The Birder's Handbook: A Field Guide to the Natural History of North American Birds. New York: Simon and Schuster, Inc..
Johnsgard, P. 2009. "Birds of the Great Plains" (On-line). Papers of the Biological Sciences. Accessed June 08, 2011 at http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1000&context=bioscibirdsgreatplains.
Lanyon, W. 1997. "Great Crested Flycatcher (Myiarchus crinitus)" (On-line). The Birds of North America Online. Accessed June 08, 2011 at http://bna.birds.cornell.edu/bna/species/300.
Miller, K. 2002. Nesting success of the great crested flycatcher in nest boxes and in tree cavities: are nest boxes safer from nest predation?. The Wilson Bulletin, 114/2: 179-185.
Sibley, D. 2000. The Sibley Guide to Birds. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, Inc..
Taylor, W., M. Kershner. 1991. Breeding biology of the Great Crested Flycatcher in central Florida. Journal of Field Ornithology, 62/1: 28-39.