Probable empid "Whit!" at Crown Beach

Noah Arthur

This afternoon I butterflied Crown Beach, where the most interesting encounter was not a butterfly but an unseen apparent Empidonax flycatcher, making "Whit!" calls in the fenced brushy junkyard(?) area just west of the park residence (the two-story building across the street from Crab Cove Visitor Center). I was making notes on butterflies when a persistent noise bored into my head: "Whit! Whit!" Is that an empid? It sure sounds like one! I tracked the sound to the junkyard, made a recording from behind the fence, but never saw the bird. There were stacks of beehives in this yard, with swarming bees and a few hawking House Sparrows, Barn Swallows, and a Phoebe -- plus the unseen something going "Whit!" in the blackwood thickets...

Here's the recording: Empid "whit", Crown Beach, Alameda, Jun. 27, 2016. Any guesses on which species of empid? Is it an empid at all, or might there be other possibilities? (Although I know I haven't heard anything except empids make this sort of sound before...)

The other highlight was a fly-by CORONIS FRITILLARY tearing eastward along the sycamore row at Crown Beach.

Noah Arthur (Oakland)

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