The Hammond’s Flycatcher is a rare visitor to Arizona, and when it does visit, you would only find it at high elevations on its way to and from the tropics. Its preferred habitat is conifer forests. In the Santa Rita Mountains, you would most likely have an opportunity to see this rare visitor on a hike in the pines.
The Hammond’s Flycatcher is a small flycatcher, with a gray upper body and gray to brown underneath. There is a white eye ring. The throat is a paler gray than the rest of the bird, sometimes tinged in yellow. The dark wings have two pale bars. This bird snatches bugs in flight, dipping and diving in the process.
The Hammond’s Flycatcher is hard to identify, since it looks so much like two other flycatcher species. Both the Gray and Dusty Flycatchers overlap in range with the Hammond’s.
This is one ferocious defender of its territory. The males are known to engage in fights to the point they lock in mid-air with another bird.
Reference: The Nature of Madera Canyon by Douglas W. Moore, Friends of Madera, 1999; Whatbird.com