Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Any of several tiny North American birds of the genus Polioptila, having bluish-gray and white plumage, a long tail, and a small slender bill.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A member of any of various species of small passerine birds found in North America and South America, close relatives of the wrens.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A bird of the genus Polioptila, of which there are about 12 American Species.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. very small North American and South American warblers

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

gnat +‎ catcher

Examples

  • Pacific-slope Flycatcher, and perhaps a Western warbler or two to my life list, the gnatcatcher was my primary target.

    10,000 Birds

  • Sure, some birds have names that describe their activities, such as flycatcher, or gnatcatcher, or their general appearance, such as bluebird, or the place they tend to loiter, such as cowbird.

    Birding season: No grousing or sniping

  • Birds of concern include the brown pelican, lesser tern, osprey, black rail, clapper rail, California gnatcatcher and savannah sparrow.

    Southern California Coast (Bailey)

  • The most abundant breeding birds include the cardinal, tufted titmouse, wood thrush, summer tanager, red-eyed vireo, blue-gray gnatcatcher, and Carolina wren.

    Eastern Broadleaf Forest (Oceanic) Province (Bailey)

  • Researchers found that areas where the gnatcatcher lived did not necessarily support populations of three insect species that share habitat with the bird.

    Umbrella species

  • Therefore, using the gnatcatcher as an umbrella species did not offer enough protection for all three of those insect species.

    Umbrella species

  • A commonly cited example of this controversy is the conservation effort based on the California gnatcatcher (a songbird).

    Umbrella species

  • The California gnatcatcher is currently being used as an umbrella species to protect the endemic flora and fauna of this region from urban development.

    California coastal sage and chaparral

  • Existing laws offer only minimal protection; these include the Natural Communities Conservation Planning Program (NCCP) of 1991 that restricts destruction of some coastal sage scrub, and the Endangered Species Act listing of the California gnatcatcher, which created restrictions on destruction of habitat for extant birds.

    California coastal sage and chaparral

  • Owing to 1990s protections for the gnatcatcher, a threatened bird species native to Southern California, and many other kinds of development restrictions, other large areas have been set aside to protect what are ostensibly places to experience the inspiration of wild nature -- all this amid 20 million people.

    Man vs. Wild

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