Photo: Tom Friedel/Vireo

Piratic Flycatcher

Legatus leucophaius

This tropical flycatcher is strongly migratory, nesting as far north as northeastern Mexico but vacating all of Mexico and Central America during the northern winter. Its migratory tendencies give it the potential to stray out of range; it has occurred several times in New Mexico and Texas and once in Florida, with all records in spring or fall. The name “piratic” comes from its habit of taking over the nests of other birds rather than building its own. 
Family Tyrant Flycatchers
This tropical flycatcher is strongly migratory, nesting as far north as northeastern Mexico but vacating all of Mexico and Central America during the northern winter. Its migratory tendencies give it the potential to stray out of range; it has occurred several times in New Mexico and Texas and once in Florida, with all records in spring or fall. The name “piratic” comes from its habit of taking over the nests of other birds rather than building its own. 
Photo Gallery
  • adult



Text © Kenn Kaufman, adapted from
Lives of North American Birds

Illustration © David Allen Sibley.
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Songs and Calls
Whistled “whee-whee”. Reportedly silent when encountered outside of native range.
Audio © Lang Elliott, Bob McGuire, Kevin Colver, Martyn Stewart and others.
Learn more about this sound collection.