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Bird news from Vietnam, from Vietnam's resident and visiting birders.

22 April 2015

Green-backed Flycatcher - 21th April

This scarce passage migrant in Vietnam was previously known as a race of the Narcissus Flycatcher. It was subsequently split to a full species and named Green-backed Flycatcher (Ficedula elisae). It is also known as Chinese Flycatcher or Elise's Flycatcher in some other references. Some authors still prefer to retain this species as a sub-species of Narcissus Flycatcher (Ficedula narcissina).
This female-type (a term used here to describe all females, and also immature males that have yet to develop any obviously- male features) was photographed on 21/4 at Hanoi.

Very helpful are the notes on identification of Narcissus Flycatchers

Whether immature male or female, confident identification of this individual as elisae can be based on e.g. the olive-green upperparts ; the obvious yellow wash to the underparts (ruling out narcissina) ; the obvious and evenly yellow eye-ring (typically rather more two-toned in narcissina); and on its structure - a combination of heavy bill and medium-length primary projection (with 7 primary tips visible from the rear on the left wing).

The yellowish rump suggest this might perhaps be a second calendar-year male.

One second before it flew off towards a prey...

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