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Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

Polioptila caerulea 
Gnatcatcher family (Sylviidae)

A small slim songbird. Bluish-gray back and head, light gray below. Long tail is usually cocked upward or flicked from side to side. Tail is black above, white below. White eye ring.

Nest is a tiny cup made of plant fibers and spider webs and covered with bits of lichen. Nest is placed on a horizontal limb, 10 to 20 feet above the ground. Eggs are pale blue with dark spots. Clutch size – 4 to 5 eggs.


Song is a complex rambling jumble of high-pitched phrases.  Song is only heard early in the breeding season, during mid- to late March and early April.  Call, heard throughout the spring and summer, is a thin high-pitched series of “zeeeee” notes.

Name Origin:

The genus name, Polioptila is from the Greek for “gray feather.”  The species name caerulea is from the Latin for “blue.” 

In the Nature Park:
Short-distance migrant, arrives mid-March to early April. Common in open woodlands throughout the Nature Park.