Female Satin v Leaden Flycatcher

To: "Bill Jolly" <>, "Birding Aus" <>
Subject: Female Satin v Leaden Flycatcher
From: Carol Probets <>
Date: Thu, 3 Mar 2005 10:54:04 +1100
Hi Bill and all,

Ahh, the perennial Leaden vs. Satin question! There was an excellent article on this by Graeme Chapman in the June 2003 Wingspan. It all seems to boil down to the fact that the female Satin has a bluish sheen on the crown, which the Leaden doesn't have. None of the other features, e.g. amount of rufous on the breast, are reliable and in fact the various field guides seem to contradict each other on some points. However, the female Satin does also tend to be darker on the throat and back than the Leaden.

I'm lucky enough to live in a spot where Satin is the norm, with Leaden more usual further down the mountains. However more often than not, my notebook just has the words "flycatcher sp." written in it. Frustrating!

Looking at your photos, I can't really see a bluish sheen but the bird does seem quite dark, so I'm not convinced of either species. But they are excellent photos! Will be interested to hear others' opinions.


Carol Probets
Blue Mountains NSW

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