• Blue Gray Gnatcatcher

    Common NameBlue Gray Gnatcatcher
    Scientific NamePolioptila caerulea
    Type of ReportOut-of-Season
    Date of Observation11/23/2017
    • Other Documentation of Observation
    • Other Documentation of Observation
    Number Observed1
    Reporting Observer's NameMichael Foster
    Mailing Address162 Breezy Hill Rd
    Springfield, VT 05156
    United States
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    EmailEmail hidden; Javascript is required.
    Date Completed11/24/2017
    Names & Emails of Other Contributing Observers

    Paul Desjardins,

    Latitude of Observation43.178577
    Longitude of Observation-72.44664
    Place NameMichael Foster
    Vermont eBird Checklist URLebird.org
    Time of Day09:10 AM
    Length of Time Observed5 minutesminutes
    Maximum Estimated Distance from Bird (in feet)20
    Minimum Estimated Distance from Bird (in feet)30
    Noteworthy Weather Conditions

    Cool (near 30 F), clear and light wind

    Optical Equipment Used for Observation

    Vortex 12 x 50 binoculars

    Observer’s Previous Acquaintance With This or Similar Species

    Seen, heard and photographed this species many times.

    I certify that that attachments included with this report were captured during this observation event​​.
    Description of Habitat

    Mixed hardwood forest with understory and nearby river

    Behaviors Observed

    Flitting quickly in the tops of trees, typical of the behavior I have seen with this species

    Description of Vocalizations

    High pitched buzzy spees typical of this bird. The vocalizations are what initially drew the attention of Paul Desjardins.

    Verbal Narrative & Description of Observation

    Paul Desjardins initially heard the birds vocalizations and then found the bird prior to my arrival at the site. We met and decided to bird the area together. We walked out to the point looking for water birds (though none were to be seen due to hunters in the vicinity). We walked back to the parking lot by the boat ramp where Paul had seen the bird and were immediately able to relocate it by it's vocalizations. It was flitting in the tops of the trees by the parking lot. We watched it for about 5 minutes when it flew deeper into the woods nearby.

    Relative Size & Shape

    Small bird similar in size and shape to a kinglet.


    White eye ring, gray cheeks and crown darker gray

    Feet & Bill

    Did not focus on feet, bill was small pointed and dainty with a hint of orange

    Upper Back

    Darker gray than belly giving 2 tone look

    Lower Back & Rump

    Not visualized (seen from below)


    Darker wings than rest of the bird, see blurry flight photo

    Breast, Belly, Flanks, Under Tail Coverts

    pale gray belly, under tail coverts darker, almost black

    IMPORTANT: What similar species were eliminated when making the identification and how was this bird different?

    Golden Crowned Kinglet. Vocalizations matched the gnatcatcher and no hint of yellow on the crown. The distinct white eye-ring was an easy identifier.

    This report was written from notes taken:Written from Memory

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