California Gnatcatcher

A bird with a dark gray head and wings, and a light gray body sits on a branch. The bird looks left. The bird has a short stubby beak, long tail with a black eye.

NPS Photo

California Gnatcatcher (Polioptila californica)

Length 4.3" Wingspan 5.5"
Dark gray overall with paler gray underparts and a black tail, very narrowly edged in white. Males have a black cap. Females have a thin white eyering and a brownish wash on the sides, wings, and undertail.

This endangered bird’s call sounds like the mew of a newborn kitten – raspy, with a crescendo in the middle.


Last updated: August 29, 2020

Park footer

Contact Info

Mailing Address:

1800 Cabrillo Memorial Drive
San Diego, CA 92106


619 523-4285

Contact Us