Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

It was really delightful to see a new bird in my backyard. I was at first confused because it moved fast and it also looked very similar to the Tufted Titmouse. Then it moved to a closer location and that’s when I realized it was a new lifer for my list! I kept this bird in my viewfinder at all times allowing me to get a series of shots in different angles. The bird is a Blue-gray Gnatcatcher. I have researched a bit of information for this bird:

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher – Scientific name: Polioptila caerulea is a very small songbird, 10–13 cm (3.9–5.1 in) in length and weighing only 5–7 g (0.18–0.25 oz). Adult males are blue-gray on the upperparts with white underparts, have a slender dark bill, and a long black tail edged in white. Females are less blue. Both sexes have a white eye ring.

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

The blue-gray gnatcatcher’s breeding habitat includes open deciduous woods and shrublands in southern Ontario, the eastern and southwestern United States, and Mexico. Though gnatcatcher species are common and increasing in number while expanding to the northeast, it is the only one to breed in Eastern North America. They build a cone-like nest on a horizontal tree branch. The incubation period is 13 days for both sexes. Both parents construct the nest and feed the young; they may raise two broods in a season. These birds migrate to the southern United States, Mexico, northern Central America-(Belize, Guatemala, and Honduras), Cuba, Bahamas, Turks and Caicos Islands, and the Cayman Islands.

They forage actively in trees or shrubs, mainly eating insects, insect eggs and spiders. They may hover over foliage (gleaning), or fly to catch insects in flight (hawking).

The tail is often held upright while defending territory or searching for food.

The Blue-gray Gnatcatcher is inscribed on Avian101 List as # 205

Text and photographs © HJ Ruiz – Avian101 – Wikipedia

18 thoughts on “Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

  1. Great fun to receive the visit of a new friend! I love the blue-gray gnatcatchers, we get them at our house in the summer too. I always stop what I’m doing to watch them flit around, very special. That’s your reward for all the feeding stations you’ve maintained — even though they might not take up with your seeds, the word is out, it’s a paradise in HJ’s yard. 😀

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