|Family: Muscicapidae (Old World Flycatchers)
This stunning bird nests in Europe and across Asia, wintering in northern Africa and the Indian subcontinent. Some Bluethroats also nest in tussocks and low scrub thickets on the tundra in Alaska and the Yukon; no one knows where these North American birds winter. Male Bluethroats breeding from the Yukon and Alaska through northern Asia and Europe have red centers to the blue throat (like the Alaskan bird I photographed) while those breeding in central and southern Europe have white throat centers or entirely blue throats. DNA studies suggest they’re all the same species.
Bluethroats were once considered thrushes, but more recent work places them in Muscicapidae, the “Old World Flycatchers,” along with the European Robin and the Wheatear.