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  • Yusuke N.

サメビタキ属 / Muscicapa

In the slightly cooler mornings, the athletic park is now bustling with autumn migration. Birds of the genus muscicapa fly out from all over the grove of trees facing the park, looking for insects.

The three species, Siberian Flycatcher, Asian Brown Flycatcher, and Grey-streaked Flycatcher, are easily encountered in similar places. All of them have their own illustrated characteristics, but when you actually photograph them, the differences are sometimes surprisingly subtle and confusing, depending on the individual, the light, and the angle of the shot. For the identification of the muscicapa, I referred to the explanations provided by the Osaka Nanko Wild Bird Park in addition to the illustrated books I have.


This is an Asian Brown Flycatcher. Judging from the thick and clear eye-ring, the pale spots from the breast to the sides, and the absence of dark spots on the lower tailpipe. The tip of the eye is usually considered whitish, but it is not so white.

コサメビタキ / Asian brown flycatcher
Nikon D500 + AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR

The clear vertical spots from the breast to the side of the body suggest that this is a Grey-streaked Flycatcher, but since it is said that some Siberian Flycatchers also have clear vertical spots, I will examine other characteristics in the next photo.

エゾビタキ / Grey-streaked flycatcher
Nikon D500 + AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR

Different angles of the same individual side by side. The eye ring is narrow. The Grey-streaked Flycatcher is indistinct, the Siberian Flycatcher is distinct, and the one in the photo may be indistinct. The tip of the eye is difficult to see from this angle. The space between the jaw line and cheek line is obscured in the left photo, but is relatively bright and clearly visible in the middle photo. The dark spots on the lower tail tube, which are characteristic of the Siberian Flycatcher, are not visible. In the last photo on the right, the upper surface has a strong brownish tinge, making it look like a Grey-streaked Flycatcher.

From the above, I concluded that it was probably a Grey-streaked Flycatcher.

エゾビタキと思われる個体

This is a Grey-streaked Flycatcher.

エゾビタキ / Grey-streaked flycatcher
Nikon D500 + AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR

An Asian Brown Flycatcher with pale breast and broad yellow base of bill.

コサメビタキ / Asian brown flycatcher
Nikon D500 + AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR

Another Asian Brown Flycatcher.

コサメビタキ / Asian brown flycatcher
Nikon D500 + AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR

Frontal shot of a Varied Tit.

ヤマガラ / Varied tit
Nikon D500 + AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR

There was also a Narcissus Flycatcher.

キビタキ / Narcissus flycatcher
Nikon D500 + AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR

An Asian Brown Flycatcher again.

コサメビタキ / Asian brown flycatcher
Nikon D500 + AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR

The last one was also an Asian Brown Flycatcher. If I hadn't made a mistake when I was wondering whether the second bird was a Grey-streaked Flycatcher or a Siberian Flycatcher, I wouldn't have seen the Siberian Flycatcher after all.

コサメビタキ / Asian brown flycatcher
Nikon D500 + AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR

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