Eastern Wood-Pewee is a relatively plain gray bird with few
distinguishing marks, and is often only safely identified from similar
Flycatchers by it's voice and range. The Western equivalent, the Western
Wood-Pewee, looks almost exactly alike. Fortunately, Wood-pewees are
typically quite vocal, more often heard than seen, but the vocal nature of the
species greatly aids identification in comparison to other flycatchers.
Eastern Wood-pewees are normally only found in the eastern part of South Dakota,
with Western Wood-Pewees in the west, so location is also an excellent method
for distinguishing species in South Dakota.
Habitat: Prefers deciduous forest during the
summer breeding season, although they will also use mixed forest. They
are normally found in and around forest openings and edges. They
winter along forest edges and scrubby forest in the tropics.
Diet: Feeds almost exclusively on insects, especially flying
insects. Will also occasionally eat berries.
Behavior: Normally feeds in typically flycatcher
fashion, observing from a perch, and flying out to snag insects in mid-air
once they're spotted. They will also hover near vegetation and pick
off insects on foliage.
Nesting: June and July. The nest of an Eastern
Wood-Pewee is a cup of grasses, sedges, and spider webs, with the outside
sometimes covered with lichens. The female usually lays 3 eggs, and she
alone incubates them. When the eggs hatch, both parents help to feed the
young. The young fledge after a little more than 2 weeks.
Migration: Summers throughout the eastern half of the United states and southeastern
Canada. Winters in South America.
Cornell University's "All About Birds" - Eastern Wood-Pewee
Photo Information: June 2nd, 2005 -- Perry Nature area just east of Sioux Falls -- Terry L. Sohl
Additional Photos: Click on the image chips or
text links below for additional, higher-resolution Eastern Wood-pewee photos.