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The Pied Flycatcher (Ficedula hypoleuca), is a small passerine bird. It breeds in most of Europe and western Asia. It is migratory, wintering mainly in western Africa.

DescriptionEdit

This is a 12-13.5 cm long bird. The breeding male is mainly black above and white below, with a large white wing patch, white tail sides and a small forehead patch. Non-breeding males, females and juveniles have the black replaced by a pale brown.

The bill is black, and has the broad but pointed shape typical of aerial insectivores. As well as taking insects in flight, this species hunts caterpillars amongst the oak foliage, and will take berries. It is therefore a much earlier spring migrant than the more aerial Spotted Flycatcher, and its loud rhythmic and melodious song is characteristic of oak woods in spring.

They are birds of deciduous woodlands, parks and gardens, with a preference for oak trees. They build an open nest in a tree hole, and will readily adapt to an open-fronted nest box. 4-10 eggs are laid.

Status in EnglandEdit

It has on average decreased in population by 25% within the last 25 years. It has ceased to breed in several parts of its former range within Britain.

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