News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Sisters Country birds

As one walks around meadows and open backyards, you are likely to hear a blurry sound “pee-wee, pee-wee,” often followed by a “pip, pip”. This is the call of a Western Wood Pee-wee (contopus sordidulus).

This gray nondescript flycatcher will perch on the end of a branch and quickly dart out and catch insects in the air and a small clap-clap sound is made when capturing the bugs or when protecting the nest area.

In late spring a nest is built by the female in the fork of an aspen, pine, alder or cottonwood. Spider webs are used to bind and camouflage the nest using fine grasses, bark strips, lichens, mosses and feathers. Two to four creamy white eggs are laid, which hatch in approximately two weeks, and the chicks leave the nest in 14 to 18 days. They are then fed by the parents for two to three weeks before venturing out on their own. They are still calling in the morning and evening in late summer.

A group of Pee-wees are referred to as a “squirt” or a “dribble” of Pee-wees.

For more Western Wood Pee-wee photos visit http://abirdsingsbecauseithasasong.com/recent-journeys.

 

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