Despite a life White-fronted Parrot being in contention, the title for my BBOTW this week was taken by the Cordilleran Flycatcher Empidonax occidentalis. I am not sure why the flycatcher got the nod, perhaps it was the oxygen starvation, maybe it was in reparation for simply turning away in the past. My common reaction to any Empidonax is to pretend that I have not seen it and move quickly along in case I get drawn in to the fruitless task of estimating primary projection, comparing wingbar contrast or judging width of bill base.
Luckily, I was in a pine/oak forest, high on a Mexican mountain, far from the favoured haunts of the Pacific Slope Flycatcher Empidonax difficilis and the Cordilleran shone out as the obvious choice.
The Cordilleran Flycatcher used to share the species with the Pacific Slope Flycatcher. They were collectively known as the Western Flycatcher and all was well until some Clever Dick (with an eye for differences that cannot reliably be quantified in the field and a refined ear that could differentiate between “ps-SEET, ptsick, seet!” and “ps-SEET, ptsick, seet!”) suggested that they should be separated.
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