Migratory species mainly, with a few birds breeding on the island and the Akamas area. It overwinters in almost all sub-Saharan Africa and migrates – breeds in NW Africa, almost all of Europe and large part of western to central Asia.
It prefers forested areas, especially along river valleys, or areas with plenty of trees (e.g., orchards, parks) with open places nearby. It chases insects from a lookout point where it’s perched. When it spots prey it attacks, either on air or on the ground. It often returns to the same perching point (e.g., a branch) after the attack.
It’s a small bird, greyish above (back, head), paler whitish underside with greyish spots in vertical lines on the chest. Head relatively large in relation to the body, black beak, slender but strong.