Family Old World Flycatchers and Chats (Muscicapidae)

Least Concern

Ryukyu Flycatcher (Ficedula owstoni)


Taxonomy

French: Gobemouche des Ryu Kyu German: Ryukyuschnäpper Spanish: Papamoscas de las Ryukyu
Taxonomy:

Zanthopygia owstoni

Bangs

, 1901,

Ishigaki, southern Ryukyu Islands

.

Until recently considered conspecific with F. narcissina and F. elisae, but genetically, vocally and morphologically distinct#R#R#R, differing from latter in characters given under that species and from F. narcissina, provisionally, in its dark green-grey vs black crown to mantle (3); yellow vs orange-yellow supercilium (1); fainter orange tinge to breast (1); song with shortest phrases (2) and narrowest frequency range (2)#R. However, acoustic samples are from Okinawa and genetic samples from Iriomote#R; race jakuschima, closest to F. narcissina in size and plumage, unsampled, so separation of present species tentative; more research needed. Races jakuschima and shonis both largely ignored in recent treatments, but they show a stepped-clinal N–S transition from the large colourful F. narcissina to the small, plainer nominate of present species, and are reinstated here. Three subspecies currently recognized.

What do (1) and (2) mean? Learn more about the scoring system.
Subspecies and Distribution
  • F. o. jakuschima (E. J. O. Hartert, 1907) – N Ryukyu Is (Tanegashima, Yakushima).
  • F. o. shonis (Nagamichi Kuroda, 1923) – C Ryukyu Is (Amami-Oshima S to Okinawa).
  • F. o. owstoni (Bangs, 1901) – S Ryukyu Is (Miyako-jima S to Iriomote).
  • Descriptive notes

    12–13·5 cm; c.12 g, male on average larger than female. Medium-sized flycatcher, males brightly coloured. Male nominate race has forehead to nape, lores, cheeks and ear-... read more

    Voice

    Song consists of short simple phrases, typically of three parts separated by 1–2 seconds, e.g. “... read more

    Habitat

    Inhabits broadleaf evergreen forest, both primary and secondary, also mixed fir–oak (Abies... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet little known, but includes various small invertebrates; also some small fruits, e.g. berries. Forages solitarily or in pairs. Searches... read more

    Breeding

    Very few data. Details likely to be much as for F. narcissina.

    Movements

    Resident or possibly partly migratory. Recorded N to Kuroshima and even in S South Korea, and in S... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Formerly a common resident in Ryukyus S to Okinawa, this species has declined and is now generally rare (possibly extirpated on... read more

    Recommended citation

    del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Christie, D.A. (2019). Ryukyu Flycatcher (Ficedula owstoni). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from https://www.hbw.com/node/1344066 on 18 September 2019).