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Adults have olive-brown upperparts, browner on the wings and tail, with whitish underparts; they have a white eye ring, white wing bars, a small bill and a short tail. The breast is washed with olive-grey. The upper part of the bill is grey; the lower part is orangish. At one time, this bird was included with the very similar willow flycatcher in a single species, "Traill's flycatcher".
They wait on a perch near the top of a shrub and fly out to catch insects in flight, also sometimes picking insects from foliage while hovering. They may eat some berries and seeds.
This bird's song is a wheezed ree-BEE-a. The call is a quick preet.
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