This bird is a mystery to me. And to be honest, I hate flycatchers, they all look alike. You have to remember a lot of info to try and ID them; where they are, what they sound like, what time of year it is...it just goes on and on. This one can either be an Alder or a Willow Flycatcher.:(Click on image for entire picture.)
We have a pair of these nesting in a local Wildlife Area. Although as a rule Alders don't generally nest in my local area; they generally nest 60 or so miles to the East. However this is an area that gets weird visitors from time to time and there have been reports in past years of a possible Alder nest. So it is possible. I have seen pictures from both species that are brown like this one and an olive color as well. What am I to do?
Well there are two easy ways to tell, one is a sure fire the other is not as reliable but will do in a pinch. The not so reliable way is to take a look at it's nest. An Alder as a rule is a messy nester. Where an Willow's nest is neater. like I said, it's not the best way but it will do.
The absolute best way is to listen. Their calls give them away. An Alder's song (according to Cornell University) is a harsh, ripping "f-bee-oo" where a willow is more of a harsh "fitz-bew" or "rrritz-bew,". Once your hear the calls and learn the calls, IDing is easy.
It's the same with man. I know lots of wonderful Christian believers that have messy houses and cars. But what let's me know that they believe in Christ is their speech. Proverbs is a great book that has a lot to say about a person's tongue; an example:
Proverbs 10:20-22 (NIV)
20 The tongue of the righteous is choice silver,
but the heart of the wicked is of little value.
21 The lips of the righteous nourish many,
but fools die for lack of judgment.
22 The blessing of the LORD brings wealth,
and he adds no trouble to it.
A seasoned believer, will choose their words with the thought "Will this imitate/honor Christ? Will this glorify God?"
A nonbeliever/fool will just blurt out whatever is in his heart.
Christian, the world is watching you. Imitate Christ in word and deed, so that if a non believer sees you, they will say, "There goes a Believer." instead of "And he calls himself a Believer!"
Non Christian, the only way you can effect permanent change is to accept Jesus as your savior. Pray to God and ask for forgiveness, and ask Christ to come into you and change you.
As far as the Flycatcher goes...Another quirk about the species is that it doesn't respond to calls, or call out like other birds do. They basically clam up. Sometimes you get lucky and hear it's call. I and others have gone to the place at different times and days to no avail. I guess I'm going to have to wait till Fall and go check out the nest. :-D