Spotted Flycatcher

Irish Name: Cuilire liath
Scientific name: Musciapa striata
Bird Family: Flycatchers (chats)
Conservation status


A widespread summer visitor from May to September.


Slightly larger than a Robin and a rather non-descript species. Ages and sexes appear largely the same. The head, back, wings and tail are dark grey, while the the undersides are whiteish with extensive grey streaking. Juveniles have some white centers to the feathers on the wing and back. When perched, has a distinctive long-tailed and large-headed shape.


The call is a quiet and unobtrusive “zee”. The song is similarly unremarkable and rather infrequently heard.


Insects caught in flight. Usually perches on an exposed branch in a woodland clearing, darting out to catch any passing insects.


Spotted Flycatchers are a widespread breeding bird in broadleaf woodlands, well-vegetated hedgerows, parks and gardens. Will use nestboxes.


Spotted Flycatchers winter in central and southern Africa.

Monitored by

Countryside Bird Survey.