any of numerous tropical American flycatchers of the genus Elaenia, having short crests and small bills.

< Neo-Latin (1835), orig. Elaïnia < Greek elaïnéa, feminine of elaḯneos pertaining to the olive, derivative of elaía olive; so named from the birds' color

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(genus Elaenia), any of about 20 species of plain-coloured New World flycatchers, family Tyrannidae (order Passeriformes), with a short bill and modest, ragged crest, usually concealing a white or yellow crown patch. Found in Central America, South America, and the West Indies, most species are olive above and have yellowish underparts. Field identification of species must often be based on distinctive vocal patterns. Some taxonomists place the yellow-crowned species in the genus Myiopagis.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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