A loud "Wheeep!" greeted me as I stepped out onto my back porch Sunday morning. It made me smile for I instantly recognized the call of an old friend from my childhood, the Great Crested Flycatcher. He had returned from his winter down south.
(Image courtesy of Cornell Lab of Ornithology.)
An interesting thing about this bird's nests is that they often will use a shedded snakeskin in the construction of the nest. Why? Is is a way of scaring off predators? Or maybe the bird just likes the look of snakeskin. Only the Great Crested Flycatcher knows for sure.
This flycatcher does nest in our area and some years I have them in my neighborhood throughout the summer as they raise their 4-6 young. I've never had one nest in my yard, to my knowledge. Maybe this will be the year!