photo by Phil Swanson
L 7 1/2″ (19 cm).
Song or calls:
Listen (NGPC audio)
Song is fast “pit-tse-ar.” Call is thin whistled “pee-ee,” slightly downslurred.
Description: Sexes similar. Grayish-brown above, being darkest on the head and wings; pale grayish-brown throat and breast; black tail; lacks wing bars; and light rust-colored belly and undertail coverts. Juveniles are browner above, with two cinnamon wing bars. Found in open, dry habitats, including rocky canyons, badlands, and ranchlands.
Behavior: Frequently seen pumping and spreading its tail.
Habitat: Often nests under bridges or on horizontal ledges of buildings.
Where in Nebraska: Common spring and fall migrant and summer resident in western Nebraska.
Field Notes: Vagrants are seen east to the Missouri River.
Fun Facts: The Say’s Phoebe breeds farther north than any other flycatcher; its only limitation is suitable nesting areas.