The Willow Flycatcher, Empidonax traillii (Audubon), was a newly discovered species when John James Audubon found it at Arkansas Post in 1822. The bird was fairly common in summer in prairie-scrub habitat around Arkansas at least until the 1950s. There after numbers declined until one or two individuals were found occasionally at a single site in Benton County in the late 1980s through 1990s. We found a population consisting of three nesting territories on Baker Prairie Natural Area in Harrison, Boone County, Arkansas. This represents the first confirmed nesting since 1990 and only the second since 1969. A nest with eggs was located 10 July 2002; fledglings were being fed by parents in two territories on 6 August, and only an empty nest was found in the third territory. Baker Prairie is protected by the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission and The Nature Conservancy. The habitat, tallgrass prairie fringed with woody scrub vegetation, will be managed to benefit the flycatcher.
Holimon, William C. and James, Douglas A.
"Nesting Willow Flycatchers Discovered at Harrison, Arkansas,"
Journal of the Arkansas Academy of Science: Vol. 57
, Article 12.
Available at: http://scholarworks.uark.edu/jaas/vol57/iss1/12