Saturday, 10 September 2011

Fork-tailed flycatcher

Tyrannus savana

Photo by Yves Roumazeilles (

Common name:
fork-tailed flycatcher (en); tesourinha (pt); tyran des savanes (fr); tijereta sabanera (es); gabelschwanz-königstyrann (de)
Order Passeriformes
Family Tyrannidae
This species is found from central Mexico all the way south to central Argentina.
Due to their extremely long tail, males are larger than female, being 37-41 cm long while females are just 28-30 cm long. They weigh 28-32 g.
Fork-tailed flycatchers are found in a wide variety of habitats including pastures, open savannas and cerrado, and riparian forests. They are also open residential areas with scattered trees.
These birds mostly hunt insects in flight, but will also eat berries and small fruits during winter if insects become scarce.
Fork-tailed flycatchers breed in September-December. Both sexes build the nest, an open cup made of twigs placed in a small tree 2-6 m above the ground. The female lays 1-3 eggs which are incubated by both parents for 13-16 days. The chicks are fed by both parents and fledge 15 days after hatching.
IUCN status - LC (Least Concern)
This species has a very large breeding range and has a global population estimated at 5-50 million individuals. The population is suspected to be stable owing to its nomadic nature and ability to thrive in a wide range of open habitats.

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