IUCN threat status:

Least Concern (LC)

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Biology

As its name suggests, the vermilion flycatcher feeds on insects, including flies, butterflies, grasshoppers, beetles, termites, bees and spiders. Hunting takes places from an exposed perch, from which the flycatcher darts out to snatch passing prey in the air, or sometimes drops to take it from the ground (2) (4) (6). During the breeding season, the male vermilion flycatcher performs a spectacular display flight. Fluffing out the feathers and raising the crest on the head, the male flies up, flapping furiously, to about 30 or more metres in the air, before hovering for a few moments and dropping back down to a perch, all the while repeating his musical song (2) (3) (6). Breeding usually takes place between March and July in the far north of the species' range, and between October and January in the far south. The nest is built in a horizontal fork of a tree, and comprises a shallow cup of twigs, grass, small roots and lichens, held together with spiderwebs and lined with feathers and hair (2) (6). Two to three eggs are laid, and are incubated by the female for 13 to 15 days, during which time the male will often bring food to the female at the nest (2) (4) (8). Both the male and female vermilion flycatcher help feed the young, which fledge after about 13 to 18 days, and the pair may then go on to raise a second brood (2) (4). Vermilion flycatcher nests are sometimes parasitised by cowbirds, brood parasites that use the vermilion flycatcher as hosts to raise the cowbirds' young (2) (10).

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Source: ARKive

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