In 1804, John James Audubon used a silver thread attached to its leg to note when the bird would return each year. Listen to more sounds of this species from the ML archive. The Eastern Phoebe (Sayornis phoebe) is a loner and seldom comes to in contact with other phoebes and to my knowledge they rarely visit feeders. Home to hundreds of species of birds and the Whooping Crane Festival in February. A perky bird that bobs its tail repeatedly. Brownish-gray above, being darkest on the head, wings, and tail. BirdNote's theme music was composed and played by Nancy Rumbel and John Kessler. Type in your search and hit Enter on desktop or hit Go on mobile device, With careful listening, though, you can tell them apart by their different singing styles. Now if a bird were named for its song, [Fee-bee song of the eastern Black-capped Chickadee] this bird would probably be called a “phoebe.” But it isn’t. About this guide How to Bird How to Identify Birds Plumage and Molt Parts of a Bird Classification of Birds Bird Families Natural History of Birds Endangered and Threatened Birds Bird Conservation Glossary. Look for The eastern phoebe, unlike most other flycatchers, is relatively easy to identify. Flight call description A rich, descending "chiu". Males hovering at a possible nest site to show it to a female also give a nasal chattering call. They typically place their mud-and-grass nests in protected nooks on bridges, barns, and houses, which adds to the species’ familiarity to humans. Listen to a Eastern Phoebe ... Clear phoe-be, repeated many times; the second syllable is alternately higher or lower than the first. National Audubon Society Measuring about 5 to 7 inches long with gray-brown above, and whitish below. When an Eastern Phoebe is perched, it will pump its tail up and down. Watch for it constantly dipping its tail down. Eastern Phoebes sometimes snap their bill mandibles together to make a loud sound at an intruder, predator, or, sometimes, a bird bander. They also sing a variant of this song with a stutter or two between the two syllables; this is more often heard during or after aggressive interactions. DISTRIBUTION. Listen for its low-pitched, harsh Eastern Phoebe [61890] recorded by William W H Gunn; Eastern Wood-Pewee [191122] recorded by W L Hershberger. Breeding in North America: nc Canada to sc USA, se USA and se Canada; can be seen in 11 countries. Your support helps secure a future for birds at risk. Many people drawn to birds develop a fondness for certain species because they associate happy occasions with them. Eastern Phoebe Sayornis phoebe. Search. Seemingly quite tame, it often nests around buildings and bridges where it is easily observed. Audubon protects birds and the places they need, today and tomorrow. Northern cardinal. Call is sharp “chip.” Description: Sexes similar. The eastern phoebe is a small passerine bird. A medium-sized bird that constantly wags its tail, the phoebe also gives a vocal clue to its identity by softly uttering its name—fee-bee. Black Phoebe (Sayornis nigricans). 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Before you start identifying vireos, you need to stop confusing them with other similar families of songbirds. Best of all, its gentle tail-wagging habit and soft fee-bee song make the Phoebe easy to identify, unlike many flycatchers. Despite its plain appearance, this flycatcher is often a favorite among eastern birdwatchers. I’m Michael Stein. Phoebe, any of three species of New World birds of the family Tyrannidae (order Passeriformes). The nest is perhaps unusual, because it is resting on a gutter pipe. Usually seen near water. With careful listening, though, you can tell them apart by their different singing styles. During breeding season, mating pairs stay together to feed their young. In North America the best-known species is the eastern phoebe (Sayornis phoebe), 18 cm (7.5 inches) long, plain brownish gray above and paler below. Blue jay. 0:00 / Eastern phoebe (call / song) call, song. American robin. Freshly molted birds in fall have yellowish underparts. They occasionally eat small fish or frogs. Visit your local Audubon center, join a chapter, or help save birds with your state program. Legal Notices Privacy Policy Contact Us. Get Instant ID help for 650+ North American birds. Phoebe is an alternative name for the Roman moon-goddess Diana, but it may also have been chosen to imitate the bird's call. Bird sounds provided by The Macaulay Library of Natural Sounds at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York. Thomas Jefferson’s bird list for Virginia included a “black-capped flycatcher,” which was an eastern phoebe. Eastern Phoebes and Wood-Pewees are vocal birds. Texas December 19, 2001 (WRE). Of the 428 records obtained by the TBBAP, 41% were confirmed records. Listen to Eastern phoebe on bird-sounds.net - a comprehensive collection of North American bird songs and bird calls. Often nests under eves of buildings and other structures. More at VisitPortAransas.com. 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