Least Flycatcher

Empidonax minimus




Tyrant Flycatchers (Tyrannidae)

Code 4


Code 6



Breeding Type:

Monogamous, Small colonies, Semicolonial

Egg Color:

Creamy white

Number of Eggs:

3 - 6

Incubation Days:

12 - 17

Egg Incubator:

Both sexes

Nest Location:

In fork of tree or shrub., 2-60 feet above round.

Nest Material:

Grass, bark strips, twigs, lichens, and plant fibers., Bound by spider or caterpillar webs.





Least Flycatcher: Small flycatcher with olive-gray upperparts, gray breast, and pale yellow belly. Eye-ring is white. Bill has pale lower mandible with dark tip. Sexes are similar.

Range and Habitat

Least Flycatcher: Breeds from southern Yukon to northern Saskatchewan and New Brunswick, to southern British Columbia, northeastern Wyoming, eastern Nebraska, south-central Indiana, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey to the Appalachians; winters from northern Mexico to Nicaragua. Prefers shade trees and orchards in villages and city parks, and along rural roadsides.

Breeding and Nesting

Least Flycatcher: Three to six creamy white eggs are laid in a nest made of grass, bark strips, twigs, lichens, and plant fibers, bound by spider or caterpillar webs, and built in a tree or shrub 2 to 60 feet above the ground. Incubation ranges from 12 to 17 days and is carried out by both parents.

Foraging and Feeding

Least Flycatcher: Feeds on insects, some spiders, and a few berries and seeds; forages from branches and foliage by perching to spot prey, and then flying out to catch it in mid-air.


Least Flycatcher: Call is a piercing "whitt-whitt-whitt." Song is a raspy, repetitive "chee-BECK."

Similar Species

Least Flycatcher: Willow, Acadian, and Alder flycatchers are larger with heavier bills, greener upperparts, longer primary extensions, and different voices.

Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
The ventral part of the bird, or the area between the flanks on each side and the crissum and breast. Flight muscles are located between the belly and the breast.
The upper front part of a bird.
Lower mandibleX
The lower part of the bill.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X